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williams lcm
12-18-2012, 09:16 PM
I have been noticing more and more around here that large areas are being pluged rather than sodded. Is there a machine that does this and how well does it work for different grasses? I was thinking about getting one to rent if possible and plug my fathers 3 acres of land. Anyone suggestions?

Landscape Poet
12-18-2012, 09:36 PM
I have been noticing more and more around here that large areas are being pluged rather than sodded. Is there a machine that does this and how well does it work for different grasses? I was thinking about getting one to rent if possible and plug my fathers 3 acres of land. Anyone suggestions?

If you are referring to a machine that installs the plugs....then not that I am aware of however you can pick one of these (http://www.shop.com/Sod_Plugger_Yard_Butler_SP_33-468230006-516499666-p+.xhtml?sourceid=298&gclid=CIOj9sSppbQCFQcHnQodkgIApA) up at home depot or lowes generally.

I own one because it is a quick sale to the customer that is to impatient to allow a area that experienced damage and really does not justify a sod installation (Pallet). They are simple to install as you might gather, you just stomp on the plugger, pull the handle up and it cuts out a perfect little 4 inch square...the same size as a plug.

It comes in handy when installing lots of asiatic jasmine as they are generally plugs in the same 4 in square when sold in flats.

Keith
12-19-2012, 12:40 AM
Hmmm, 3 acres of plugs is going to be a bit more than you want to tackle, I do believe.

A tray of plugs will cover about 18 sq ft. Spaced at an extremely wide 2 ft you are still talking a huge number of plugs. Even if only half of the 3 acres were plugged, you'd be looking at at nearly 2000 trays. And I don't even know if you can buy them wholesale. It would be a pricey venture at $4+ dollars a tray, then still you'd only have a piece of grass stuck in a hole every two feet. I'd definitely call Bethel and ask them if they sell the pallets of plugs wholesale. You then will likely have to arrange transport of them. Then you have to figure out how to keep them alive because you probably won't be doing them in a weekend :laugh: You would want to use a power auger to do the holes, but you will still be talking about one heck of a lot of work.

williams lcm
12-19-2012, 06:08 PM
It has got to be a machine. I just wish I could see it in action. The plugs are all spaced equally and about 2 acres worth of plugs. It is just to perfect for someone to do. This is the second large area that I have seen plugged in the last 3 months. Nobody knows of a machine or tractor that does this?

Patriot Services
12-20-2012, 08:01 PM
Never seen a machine that does this. My new house has some sparse areas I intend to plug in Feb. I already put down an app of Freehand. The thought being it will knock out any remaining weeds, prevent CG (2nd app after plugs take further CG control, and control the largest list of weeds i could find. Also I dont expect the freehand to intefere with root develpoment in the plugs. Temps have also been high here with some rain so i added an app of Milorganite.Springtime will get the micro/fe package i love so much from Lesco. The plugs will be spaced 9". I could sod these areas just as easily but I want to see what i can do with plugs. Its a full acre of decent SA that just hasnt had much care in the last two years. :usflag:

greendoctor
12-20-2012, 08:36 PM
Freehand contains pendimethalin. Not really a good idea to apply on plugged lawns. The pendimethalin will cause the stolons to float on the soil rather than tack down and take root. The idea of using a preemergent to kill seeds before attempting establishment is something I have tried. EPTC(Eptam) was good for this due to its effect on nutsedge and grasses.

I have used Celsius and Dismiss on recently plugged areas without that effect. Simazine or Atrazine is also free from that effect, but it may be hard to use in Florida.

Patriot Services
12-20-2012, 08:53 PM
Freehand contains pendimethalin. Not really a good idea to apply on plugged lawns. The pendimethalin will cause the stolons to float on the soil rather than tack down and take root. The idea of using a preemergent to kill seeds before attempting establishment is something I have tried. EPTC(Eptam) was good for this due to its effect on nutsedge and grasses.

I have used Celsius and Dismiss on recently plugged areas without that effect. Simazine or Atrazine is also free from that effect, but it may be hard to use in Florida.

I thought the benefit of FH was it is easier on the roots, I also planned on 2 months before plugging and a second app 2 amonths after? It just seems to be a broader spectrum without affection root action. Wouldn't the stolons eventually tack down? Would a better paln be to plug early and establish then worry about the weeds? these area are going to be raked out prior to plugging.:usflag:

greendoctor
12-20-2012, 09:11 PM
FH is very hard on roots. University trials on fairway bermuda show negative effects on fill in and recovery if used on turf that is not totally established at time of application. From what I have seen, if grass is root pruned with something like pendimethalin or any other orange herbicide, those nodes affected are permanently damaged. New roots have to come from new nodes. I would look at using the rate of Barricade labeled for use over newly sprigged bermuda if grassy weeds are a concern. Gallery is useful for broadleaf weed control.

Of course, there is nothing wrong with keeping the area mowed low until the plugs have achieved >75% coverage and doing what you have to do. Starting low mowing soon during the grow in tends to make weed control much easier. Many weeds seen during the grow in are not normally a problem in bermuda mowed low.

9773
12-20-2012, 09:53 PM
Not sure how friendly it is to SA, but Ronstar is commonly used as a pre-emergent when sprigging bermuda. No root pruning at all.

greendoctor
12-20-2012, 10:09 PM
I deliberately left out Ronstar because it is for commercial/industrial, golf, sod production and sports turf only. Not for use on residential/home lawns. Otherwise it is a great herbicide for newly plugged, sprigged lawns. Sulfentrazone has a similar MOA to Ronstar.

Ric
12-20-2012, 10:19 PM
Not sure how friendly it is to SA, but Ronstar is commonly used as a pre-emergent when sprigging bermuda. No root pruning at all.

Ronstar is not labeled for residential turf.

Chemical root pruning by pre emergent herbicides has long been a converse among the agronomic community. There are two very distinct schools of thought. one which believe the benefits out weight the faults. The other which I follow, believes Pre emergents do more damage than good. Now let me qualify my believes by pointing out I work mostly with St Augustine a solomatic turf. Pre Emergent do not effect Rhizomes because they are below the surface which has the Pre emerge barrier. Therefore Pre emerge doesn't effect C 3 rhizome turf like it does C 4 solomatic turf.

Successful plugging of St Augustine should include both organic fertilizer like Milorganite and synthetic starter fertilizer like a 20-20-20. Of Course lots of water and Post Emerge Herbicides for weed control. But most important is the application of a PGR herbicide like Primo that redirect growth to decrease grow in time by redirecting growth in a lateral direction.

.

Patriot Services
12-21-2012, 02:58 PM
http://www.cdms.net/ldat/ld8LE007.pdf

So after reading the supp I figure I have one more month before I can plug the SA. I have to admit the Freehand has done a really good job on the weeds that were present and I haven't seen any winter weeds yet. I'm going to borrow Ric's trick of using the PGR to encourage the lateral growth. :usflag:

fl-landscapes
12-22-2012, 03:49 PM
http://www.cdms.net/ldat/ld8LE007.pdf

So after reading the supp I figure I have one more month before I can plug the SA. I have to admit the Freehand has done a really good job on the weeds that were present and I haven't seen any winter weeds yet. I'm going to borrow Ric's trick of using the PGR to encourage the lateral growth. :usflag:

Here is an interesting read for you

http://turf.ufl.edu/research_stauggro.shtml

Patriot Services
12-22-2012, 04:27 PM
Here is an interesting read for you

http://turf.ufl.edu/research_stauggro.shtml

Hmmm, what to do, what to do. I think I will try a small test plot at corner of the driveway with the PGR. The small side of yard by the driveway is going to be plugged. Heavy fert alternating between trip 13 (because I have it) and Milorganite. Water and see how long it takes each to fill in.
No pre-em was put on that side so I can do this now.
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Ric
12-23-2012, 07:06 PM
Here is an interesting read for you

http://turf.ufl.edu/research_stauggro.shtml

This is only one research example and the opinion of one result. It has been my experience if you ask one question of two PhD who share the same office. You get 3 answers. They each have their own opinion and a mutual opinion.

Unfortunate this Study doesn't take into account the SPRING BACK EFFECT. True PGR slow down top growth and some lateral growth. However as the PGR wear off the Plant grows extra fast. Thus the SPRING BACK EFFECT. Plus while the PGR is working it creates a thicker stronger plant and that is why there is a boom in growth as the PGR wears off. Therefore proper timing of application and non application of a PGR will decrease grow in time for plugs.

.

fl-landscapes
12-23-2012, 08:45 PM
That's all true. I have always felt the more information on a subject someone can gather the better they will be able to make a decision, so this was one more study. The question is, will the spring back effect outweigh the 55% loss of lateral growth during the first month? Thats for others to decide, as I have always felt plugs are a pain in the ass for many reasons and sod is usually more practical and usually cheaper when you figure all the care that is needed babysitting it to fill in. Just my opinion, too each their own.

This is only one research example and the opinion of one result. It has been my experience if you ask one question of two PhD who share the same office. You get 3 answers. They each have their own opinion and a mutual opinion.

Unfortunate this Study doesn't take into account the SPRING BACK EFFECT. True PGR slow down top growth and some lateral growth. However as the PGR wear off the Plant grows extra fast. Thus the SPRING BACK EFFECT. Plus while the PGR is working it creates a thicker stronger plant and that is why there is a boom in growth as the PGR wears off. Therefore proper timing of application and non application of a PGR will decrease grow in time for plugs.

.

Ric
12-23-2012, 09:12 PM
.

IMHO Plugging is not practical on large areas. However it has it's place when dealing with small burn outs.

Strip sodding is an other choice for larger areas. But once again you are dealing with a grow in and weeds.

.

fl-landscapes
12-23-2012, 09:27 PM
Yup, small repair jobs especially are good plug jobs if you don't do a lot of sod and have extra pieces readily available that is. The spring back effect is very interesting, I remember I learned about it in the Georgia turf management course I took and felt it was interesting enough to share with a couple friends, who had never heard of it either but thought it was also interesting. Just another tool in the bag if used properly. I'm just not a plug guy.

fl-landscapes
12-23-2012, 09:37 PM
I actually think it would have been worthy of your advanced agronomy section. When you think about it, it takes a certain amount of carbohydrates and other nutrients to grow a plant x amount, so when these nutrients are stored due to a pgr being applied, would the spring back be greater than the growth of what would have happened if pgr wasn't applied? Or is it equal growth only at a faster (surge rate)? Or is it actually less growth during the spring effect because although the nutrients stored, some must be used elsewhere in the plant like the roots, no?

Ric
12-24-2012, 09:45 AM
I actually think it would have been worthy of your advanced agronomy section. When you think about it, it takes a certain amount of carbohydrates and other nutrients to grow a plant x amount, so when these nutrients are stored due to a pgr being applied, would the spring back be greater than the growth of what would have happened if pgr wasn't applied? Or is it equal growth only at a faster (surge rate)? Or is it actually less growth during the spring effect because although the nutrients stored, some must be used elsewhere in the plant like the roots, no?

Two points of order.

1. An advanced agronomy forum is not considered Politically Correct by the management of Lawnsite. However a Organic forum is.

2. There are not longer 10 active members on Lawnsite who could contribute to an advanced agronomy forum. Myself included since I now have forgotten more than I learned about L&O. I only do Fire Ant and Structural Pest Control now.

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