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View Full Version : Planted K-31 fescue


jstutzman
08-28-2012, 05:18 PM
Against most peoples advice, I have just spent the last few days tilling and seeding Kentucky 31 fescue. I have tried several times to grow a decent TTTF such as Lescos Transition Blend. It does great until June then starts falling apart and most dont recover. After this year I have crabgrass and dirt(if you could call it that).I have two boys and we are fairly hard on our lawn. Im not looking for a picture quality lawn. I just want something green that i dont have to fuss with.

Anyone actually like there K-31 lawn. I think of all the reading i have done, I seen two people that like there K31 lawn. Most hate the wide blades and medium green color. I actually like the thick heavy duty type grass.

I think if i can keep the clumping down, i will actually like it. Even if its not perfect, it will be better than the dirt and crab grass i have now.

agrostis
08-28-2012, 09:11 PM
"Heavy duty type grass" - I guess a grass that was selected because of it's ability to withstand a cow count's as heavy duty. Can you tell i'm not a K-31 fan ? When you want to try something else, i will help you out. Good luck.

jstutzman
08-28-2012, 10:34 PM
"Heavy duty type grass" - I guess a grass that was selected because of it's ability to withstand a cow count's as heavy duty. Can you tell i'm not a K-31 fan ? When you want to try something else, i will help you out. Good luck.

Thanks for the response. I have spent a lot of time and money trying to make TTTF grow. It does okay in area that get some shade thru out the day but in direct sun, heavy traffic areas and on my hillside, it dies off. I have been planting Lescos Transition Blend and to me it is just too fine and soft. We destroy it pretty quickly with the little ATV's. I have seen some TTTF grasses that look pretty durable while having a great look but I dont know what they are. My good buddy runs a lawn care business on the side and uses the Lesco i think exclusively and has happy customers. Maybe we have different needs or maybe i just have terrible ground for growing grass but i have not had much luck with it.

Forgot to ask, why dont you like it? Color, texture, disease tolerance. I just ask because from all the reading it is the most drought resistant and most tolerant to traffic. If you like the dark green carpet look I can understand why you would not like it but just wondering if there's a reason you don't other than visual appeal. Im also from around Winston Salem so im interested in what you would have recommend.

jstutzman
08-29-2012, 11:53 AM
Also, i still have to do part of the front yard that has lesco in it now. 50% of it is thinned out to nothing. I love the look of the TTTF blends during fall and spring but the summer kills it. Is there a more drought resistant TTTF available besides the lesco transition blend that i could use in the front? I wont be planting it for another two weeks.

White Gardens
08-29-2012, 12:01 PM
When you say "die off" is it actually dieing or is it just going dormant?

With our drought this year, most un-watered lawns went dormant. The turf that survived the best seems like the TTF varieties. Some even held a light green color through the roughest stretches of weather.

That and being NC, you might want to think of something hardier in the warm season grass varieties and Buffalo Grass usually does the trick.


......

Florida Gardener
08-29-2012, 02:10 PM
I would go with st Augustine....can take full sun and some shade.
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jstutzman
08-29-2012, 02:43 PM
When you say "die off" is it actually dieing or is it just going dormant?

With our drought this year, most un-watered lawns went dormant. The turf that survived the best seems like the TTF varieties. Some even held a light green color through the roughest stretches of weather.

That and being NC, you might want to think of something hardier in the warm season grass varieties and Buffalo Grass usually does the trick.


......

I am meaning dead as dead can be. There are places, where plugged, that grass has come back but between all the plugs is just crispy dead straw. I will look into the buffalo grass. I did not realize that it was a hot season grass.

agrostis
08-29-2012, 09:49 PM
Thanks for the response. I have spent a lot of time and money trying to make TTTF grow. It does okay in area that get some shade thru out the day but in direct sun, heavy traffic areas and on my hillside, it dies off. I have been planting Lescos Transition Blend and to me it is just too fine and soft. We destroy it pretty quickly with the little ATV's. I have seen some TTTF grasses that look pretty durable while having a great look but I dont know what they are. My good buddy runs a lawn care business on the side and uses the Lesco i think exclusively and has happy customers. Maybe we have different needs or maybe i just have terrible ground for growing grass but i have not had much luck with it.

Forgot to ask, why dont you like it? Color, texture, disease tolerance. I just ask because from all the reading it is the most drought resistant and most tolerant to traffic. If you like the dark green carpet look I can understand why you would not like it but just wondering if there's a reason you don't other than visual appeal. Im also from around Winston Salem so im interested in what you would have recommend.

I don't like K-31's color at all, or it's wide leaf, sparse growth, disease susceptibility and a crown that grow's 3/4 of an inch off the ground. I do like that dark green carpet look of TTTF.

If you have kid's and ATV's then there is no fescue that can take that abuse. You probably need a warm season grass like bermuda, and since we are a little north of prime bermuda country you need to sod. You can get the same grass (Tifway 419) as sod that grow's in every golf course fairway in this area for 60-75$ for 512 sq. ft. If you don't have irrigation (and i will bet you don't) then a hose is in your future, but you will have much better luck with bermuda.

jstutzman
08-30-2012, 08:40 AM
I don't like K-31's color at all, or it's wide leaf, sparse growth, disease susceptibility and a crown that grow's 3/4 of an inch off the ground. I do like that dark green carpet look of TTTF.

If you have kid's and ATV's then there is no fescue that can take that abuse. You probably need a warm season grass like bermuda, and since we are a little north of prime bermuda country you need to sod. You can get the same grass (Tifway 419) as sod that grow's in every golf course fairway in this area for 60-75$ for 512 sq. ft. If you don't have irrigation (and i will bet you don't) then a hose is in your future, but you will have much better luck with bermuda.

Thanks, couple of questions for you. I was under the impression that TTTF grasses were more suseptable to disease. Also, what is the crown? I tried to google this and dont understand what this is.

agrostis
08-30-2012, 05:06 PM
Thanks, couple of questions for you. I was under the impression that TTTF grasses were more suseptable to disease. Also, what is the crown? I tried to google this and dont understand what this is.

Look at this site. This is the last word as far as seed go's. Look at the fescue trial's for this area. (Raleigh) Drill down to the last page, there's K-31, in last place in every category.

http://www.ntep.org/

Look at this drawing. If the plant is the center of a clock, then the crown is indicated at about 4:00. Google "grass plant drawing"

http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.fsl.orst.edu/forages/projects/regrowth/grass_diagram.gif&imgrefurl=http://www.fsl.orst.edu/forages/projects/regrowth/print.cfm?PageID%3D11&h=487&w=350&sz=10&tbnid=M27Vdn-Bp5M_CM:&tbnh=90&tbnw=65&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dgrass%2Bplant%2Bdrawing%26tbm%3Disch%26tbo%3Du&zoom=1&q=grass+plant+drawing&usg=__p6T1sLTjBZt-750GByD_lfobMOI=&sa=X&ei=atU_UJC1BISp0AGv4oHoDA&ved=0CCUQ9QEwAQ&dur=266

jstutzman
08-31-2012, 11:22 AM
Look at this site. This is the last word as far as seed go's. Look at the fescue trial's for this area. (Raleigh) Drill down to the last page, there's K-31, in last place in every category.

http://www.ntep.org/

Look at this drawing. If the plant is the center of a clock, then the crown is indicated at about 4:00. Google "grass plant drawing"

http://www.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.fsl.orst.edu/forages/projects/regrowth/grass_diagram.gif&imgrefurl=http://www.fsl.orst.edu/forages/projects/regrowth/print.cfm?PageID%3D11&h=487&w=350&sz=10&tbnid=M27Vdn-Bp5M_CM:&tbnh=90&tbnw=65&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dgrass%2Bplant%2Bdrawing%26tbm%3Disch%26tbo%3Du&zoom=1&q=grass+plant+drawing&usg=__p6T1sLTjBZt-750GByD_lfobMOI=&sa=X&ei=atU_UJC1BISp0AGv4oHoDA&ved=0CCUQ9QEwAQ&dur=266

Will look over the sheet. Thanks for posting a picture of the grass. That was helpful for me. What is wrong with the crown being an inch off the ground. Does this mean higher cutting?

jstutzman
08-31-2012, 11:37 AM
Man, for all the references of KY-31 being very hardy and tough, it absolutely does not do well in any of the categories that i saw in the NTEP studys. Well i will share my experience when spring rolls around.

agrostis
08-31-2012, 04:46 PM
Sharing your experience next spring won't give you a proper baseline. Next Aug 15 will be much more accurate. Good luck.