N C state has lots of good information. Get in touch. and check out their Turffiles site. And talk to your local fert dealers. You may have to buy a few bags of something or pretend you will become their best customer. Buy the salesman a beer during one of the winter turf conferences.
Around here we begin when the snow melts. Just keep track of the soil temperature and Growing Degree Days. And know that up north we have to have all our pre emergents done by the time the air temp hits 80 degrees--about May 10th.
Just don't be a low-baller--nobody likes extreme competition.