View Full Version : Complete lawn renovation

08-04-2004, 11:59 AM
My lawn needs to be redone completely....cannot get rid of crab grass and want a thicker plush lawn. I'm in VA. I've heard of people here claiming they killed lawn(Roundup) and thatched the lawn(removed thatch) and seeded/fertilized. This true? Will I have a problem with the old dead lawn coming back thru the nice new lawn? Gimme the details. I have a tiller and could easily do this but that is lots of work. However, if thats what is best I'll go that route. The yard is full sun....no trees....red fescue???

08-04-2004, 01:00 PM
I would imagine you want to sprig a hybride bermunda, not a cool season grass of red fescue!
Why not fert and treat the lawn for crab and goose grass.

Don't tear up the lawn because you have crabgrass, it is an annual!

D Felix
08-04-2004, 04:57 PM
Red fescue is a shade grass. If you want a cool season grass, go with a 60/40 or a 70/30 mix of Kentucky Bluegrass/Perennial Rye.

My advice would be to treat the lawn with a pre-emergent for crabgrass next spring, then slit-seed new seed into the lawn when it is safe to do so. The fertilizer bag (with the pre-emergent) should say when you can safely seed after applying.

It'll be a lot easier to work with what you have now, as opposed to trying to do it completely over. It may take a little longer, but it'll be a lot less work....


08-05-2004, 03:26 PM
The other problem is I don't care for the mixed types of grass I have....so will the new fescue mix eventually take over the aweful looking mixture of grasses I have. Maybe I should test the soil first.....then decide. But I want results this season. I was thinking of mowing very short and then thatching and aerating, removing thatch and then seeding??? Slit seeding or what?
Thanks again.

D Felix
08-05-2004, 07:31 PM
If the yard is full sun as you previously stated, do NOT use red fescue. It is a shady area grass....

The KYBG should eventually take over and outcompete the grass that you have, given proper care. The perennial rye that I mentioned germinates faster, which is the only reason to include it. On second thought, just slit seed in straight KYBG, in an established lawn, you shouldn't need any rye.

If anything, I'd mow it a little shorter than normal, aerate, then slit seed. The slit seeder is basically a de-thatcher with a seed drill attached. Don't worry about trying to remove the thatch either, you'll invariably end up with seed mixed in.

A good fertilizer program will help once the KYBG has germinated. Remember it takes 3-4 weeks to germinate, so be patient!

Best time to do this type of work (around here anyway) is toward the end of August, into the beginning of September.



08-09-2004, 10:33 AM
Okay thanks for the info....I'll let you know how it turns out. You sure that this will give me a deep green weed free lawn? I don't want any of the grass I have now.

Thanks again.

08-10-2004, 02:33 PM
get a soil test

D Felix
08-10-2004, 07:57 PM
Just be patient. Talk nicely to it.

I won't gaurantee anything when it comes to lawns, but that is how I would approach it.

While not typically something we do, go ahead and do as timturf suggested and get a soil test too. It'll tell you what you are lacking (in the soil, that is....).


Strawbridge Lawn
08-18-2004, 06:22 PM
1. Kill off what you have with Roundup Pro
2. Cut as low as possible and bag once all is dead
3. Aerate 2-3 times
4 Seed at half rate (5lbs p/1000 SQR FT
5. Apply 1" Compost across entire area
6. Seed 5lb p/1,00 SQR Ft
Try Lesco Transition Blend (Home Depot)
7. Rake in.
WATER... This is a Fescue and needs water.. 2-3 times a day for 2-3 weeks for 5-10 minutes each cycle.

This and any other fescue in direct sun will die in Va. Summer heat unless watered daily when temps ara above 88F.


08-19-2004, 09:28 AM
Can't I just kill with roundup, aerate, slit seed, water daily?

trying 2b organic
08-20-2004, 07:15 PM
Yes you can but you will get better germination and thicker turf if you use compost like he said.

08-24-2004, 02:00 PM
Originally posted by Strawbridge Lawn

This and any other fescue in direct sun will die in Va. Summer heat unless watered daily when temps ara above 88F.


Then why recommend it?????;) ;)

08-24-2004, 03:47 PM
Thanks for all the info....I called the two rental places to check on availability of slitseeder, and they do not carry them. I'll try contracting Lesco to see if I can rent one from them. If not,
what about aerate, thatch, mow over thatch to pick up with bagger, thatch it again and overseed and keep water until seed germinates. Should I use compost or straw this way.

08-24-2004, 09:38 PM
In Hampton you should wait until at least last week of Sept.

08-25-2004, 11:31 AM
Planning on it...just trying to get the best results and line up the correct equipment for the job....thanks.