Register free!
Search
 
     

Click for Weather
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 10-15-2013, 04:41 PM
Smallaxe Smallaxe is offline
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Central Wisconsin
Posts: 9,820
Adding/Replacing Organics to Current Practices

What are some ways that Organics can be implemented to current application schedule that benefit the turf,,, w/out losing credibility with the customer???

It is always said that the client will have to lower expectations to go Organic,,, but I don't believe that this is an "All or Nothing" proposition...
I mulch mow, use more Milorganite than synfert, don't use any pre-M and only spot spray broadleaf...

Is there anything more that can be added to the system???
__________________
*
Now that I know that clay's texture(platelets) has nothing to do with water infiltration, percolation, or drainage
,,, I wonder what does...
*
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 10-17-2013, 11:14 AM
Smallaxe Smallaxe is offline
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Central Wisconsin
Posts: 9,820
For our common clay-loam topsoils, it seems the first important step is to increase water infiltration(soaking in) rather than puddling or washing away over the surface...
I believe that grass clippings provide some of that physical characteristic necessary to help that happen...
What else would add mass to the topsoil that would aid in the water soaking in???
Would corn/soy meal be needed IF there were already plenty of grass clippings on the soil, in the turf???
__________________
*
Now that I know that clay's texture(platelets) has nothing to do with water infiltration, percolation, or drainage
,,, I wonder what does...
*
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 10-19-2013, 11:43 PM
foreplease's Avatar
foreplease foreplease is offline
LawnSite Bronze Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: St. Joseph, MI
Posts: 1,205
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallaxe View Post
What else would add mass to the topsoil that would aid in the water soaking in???
Granular wetting agent followed by water

5% OM is what is commonly recognized as adequate in good soil mixes; also a number you don't want to surpass by much. Sometimes we add 100% OM to get to that number. I worked an entire growing season with my soil and compost provider and a soil testing lab to come up with a sand-compost topdressing mix that is suitable for most of my fields. Initially the supplier got kind of a laugh out of it as most folks around here just want "a load of black dirt." Once they saw the first series of lab results and the adjustments that were being recommended it became a matter of pride for them to hit my ranges. They have been making it for me now for almost ten years and it has been very dependale. I have shown them lots of before, during, and after photos. They are now recommending and providing this mix to others.

It's difficult to get any of it into the root zone unless you're starting from scratch and amending the soil. Otherwise several years of aerating followed by topdressing can make a difference. Around here not many homeowners would pay to see that through. If I have to turn a stand around and there are not any huge grading problems, I prefer to killl, slit seed, and topdress. There have been a few I have torn into, though, and I mean deep: 14-18". I have incorporated as much as 100 cubic yards of sand into a baseball infield (elevation needed help too) that had too much silt and OM. And I have tilled OM and soil into sandy fields.

Annual ryes have come a long way from the forage and paddock types like 'Gulf' to turf types such as 'Pantera.' You're still well advised to whisper if you want to mention annual rye in cool season turf. I sought opinions on using it from everyone from Riggle (thank you) to a golf course superintendent in Georgia. My sales rep liked it.The company had research on germination under traffic, such as on the football field where I used it as part of the overall mx. A couple colleges on the west sie of MI are using it on their athletic fields. In the end, I took a chance and have been pleased with the results. It was 20-25% of the overall mix. I am somewhat apprehensive about what the transition may look like but I know now that it's not going to occur in-season so it should be fine. There is also the argument that annual ryes just take food and water the permanent grass could be using. It was a matter of quick establishment and color under a lot of stress.

Axe, I'd say give it a try carefully - and I am sure I am in the minority, but I have just done it with good results. Do it as part of a mix though IMHO. I don't know that there will be quite as much benefit happening underground as you expect. You may need to regularly core aerate too.
__________________
Michigan PABL
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 10-17-2013, 02:15 PM
greendoctor greendoctor is online now
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Honolulu, Hawaii
Posts: 7,342
NOOOOOO! A common mistake I see is adding more organic matter to a soil that already has 5% or more organic matter. I do believe in the soluble humic acid supplements for soil aggregation and chelation of nutrients. However, my talk with most people centers around how compost is not a magic powder. Any greening they see from that is from the 0.5% N. That lasts all of 30-60 days. Then it has to be done again. Compost is also high in salts. Something else, that I already have plenty of. GIGO(garbage in, garbage out).

On grass clippings: I do not collect clippings. On a well fertilized lawn that is mowed to the correct height for the species of grass, they decompose rapidly on contact with the soil. GIGO. This does not work if this is attempted with a starved lawn. When I get such a lawn to tend, the clippings are collected until nutritional status is corrected.
__________________
They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety.
Benjamin Franklin 1775

Sell not virtue to purchase wealth, nor Liberty to purchase power.
Benjamin Franklin Poor Richard's Almanac1738
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 10-17-2013, 08:52 PM
Smallaxe Smallaxe is offline
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Central Wisconsin
Posts: 9,820
What gives you the idea that this topsoil has 5% OM??? Why would compost have so much salt when it comes from composted leaves and chipped branches??? The soil is not nutritionally starved,,, I'm just talking about transitioning to Organics...
__________________
*
Now that I know that clay's texture(platelets) has nothing to do with water infiltration, percolation, or drainage
,,, I wonder what does...
*
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 10-17-2013, 08:54 PM
foreplease's Avatar
foreplease foreplease is offline
LawnSite Bronze Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: St. Joseph, MI
Posts: 1,205
Topdressing has its place but I can't imagine it changing anything beneath the existing soil line. Chemical adjustments, possibly yes, and core aerating followed by topdressing may help with that.

I am uneducated about meals and glutens but from what I have read on the forums here their use does not pass the smell test with me. Same with molasses. Even if they were incredibly effective I do not believe it would change anything below the soil line.
__________________
Michigan PABL
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 10-17-2013, 09:04 PM
Smallaxe Smallaxe is offline
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Central Wisconsin
Posts: 9,820
Quote:
Originally Posted by foreplease View Post
Topdressing has its place but I can't imagine it changing anything beneath the existing soil line. Chemical adjustments, possibly yes, and core aerating followed by topdressing may help with that.

I am uneducated about meals and glutens but from what I have read on the forums here their use does not pass the smell test with me. Same with molasses. Even if they were incredibly effective I do not believe it would change anything below the soil line.
So you don't believe that organics has any real value for CEC in the root zone, or the structure change for infiltration improvement???
__________________
*
Now that I know that clay's texture(platelets) has nothing to do with water infiltration, percolation, or drainage
,,, I wonder what does...
*
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 10-17-2013, 09:23 PM
foreplease's Avatar
foreplease foreplease is offline
LawnSite Bronze Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: St. Joseph, MI
Posts: 1,205
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smallaxe View Post
So you don't believe that organics has any real value for CEC in the root zone, or the structure change for infiltration improvement???
Yes, if it is placed there and well mixed in. I do not believe it will magically migrate to the root zone.
__________________
Michigan PABL

Last edited by foreplease; 10-17-2013 at 09:24 PM. Reason: Annoying auto correct typo
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 10-17-2013, 09:31 PM
Smallaxe Smallaxe is offline
LawnSite Fanatic
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Central Wisconsin
Posts: 9,820
Quote:
Originally Posted by foreplease View Post
Yes, if it is placed there and well mixed in. I do not believe it will magically migrate to the root zone.
Fungal activity along with other soil critters, including earthworms may be able to build the soil structure if the moisture/air ratio is maintained in reasonable fashion, along with an adequate food supply... At least that is how the theories go...
__________________
*
Now that I know that clay's texture(platelets) has nothing to do with water infiltration, percolation, or drainage
,,, I wonder what does...
*
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 10-17-2013, 10:07 PM
foreplease's Avatar
foreplease foreplease is offline
LawnSite Bronze Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: St. Joseph, MI
Posts: 1,205
I respect that for the true organics folks it is an all or nothing proposition. I occasionally use orgnic products in the heat of the summer and good cultural practices throughout the year but I am not an organics LCO or even a bridge program guy. I did not come to the organics forum to bash organics. Having recently topdressed afoot all field with around 30 tons of compost I was interested in this thread.
__________________
Michigan PABL
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump





Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.6
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ©1998 - 2012, LawnSite.comô - Moose River Media
All times are GMT -4. The time now is 01:33 PM.

Page generated in 0.09534 seconds with 8 queries