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Old 09-06-2013, 12:39 PM
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BlazersandWildcats2009 BlazersandWildcats2009 is offline
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New Sod- Upkeep and Maintenance?

For those of you that weren't following my last thread feel free to chime in with your wonderful advice! If you were following my last thread, I look forward to hearing your advice also! To update the new people;

I'm far from a landscaper, however I recently decided to sod my lawn. Being that we have a shade tree which I pruned majorly so our lawn now receives sunlight. I'm in Texas (Hot Weather). We winded up planting Palisades Zoysia.

Here are the pictures following the laying of the sod. Note* these photo's are about six days following the laying of the sod.






The sod looks excellent, watering 2-3 times a day, morning, early noon, and late afternoon. Note* I did not have the money to install an irrigation system, so we started with some cheap sprinklers then went for some better sprinklers. After getting the second set of sprinklers I realized I was having to put my feet on the new lawn, so I went and scooped up a third set of sprinklers. I now have impulse sprinklers that cover the entire area. I applied half the recommended rate of Scott's Turf Builder before laying the sod. Soil was a little high on the alkaline side. I'm hoping over time I can get the PH of the soil down by composting and natural organics.

Questions:

Can I purchase anything to mix in a spray bottle-water hose to bring the PH down overtime safely?

I'm very satisfied with the outcome of the sod, excellent in green for most parts of the yard. However, I have noticed yellow or browning around the edges of the sod. (Almost appears as thatch or something that should be raked up.)

Would anyone know what would cause this around the edges? Too much water? Not enough? It almost seems as if the edges of the sod are drying out? However, in the center of the sod it remains green. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

I'm also looking for any advice for the upkeep of my newly laid sod? When to fertilize? What's the best fertilizer to use for the first time on Warm season grass?

Thanks for all the input!
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  #2  
Old 09-06-2013, 01:11 PM
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BlazersandWildcats2009 BlazersandWildcats2009 is offline
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Also, I would like to add two more questions for you guys.

I talked to the guy that owns the Grass Farm and he ran into the same problem last spring with the edges as it was first establishing? Is this normal? He also mentioned after the roots established and the weather cools below 80 degrees to add a dose of ironite? Has anyone heard of this?

My other question is, who has used root stimulator on their new sod? I've read mixed articles some saying it worked excellent, while other reviews contradicted using root stimulator. Does anyone have any hands on experience with root stimulator on new sod establishing?
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Old 09-06-2013, 08:21 PM
agrostis agrostis is offline
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To answer some of your question's -

There isn't anything in a bottle that you can spray on the sod to lower the pH. What's the number? You may not need to do anything.

http://www.google.com/search?q=lower...I7GPCK_enUS320

Those line's of dead grass in the picture are caused by the knive's cutting the sod, don't worry about that. I see (in the picture) that you didn't cover the edge's of the sod with sand, i would have done that, that keep's those edge's from drying out.

Your not using anything with weed control are you? If you are, stop. The herbicide in that stuff will affect the sod just like it affect's weed's. You only use weed control on established, rooted grass. Use straight fertilizer only. Don't start thinking weed control until next summer, this is standard for new sod.

Since it's so late in the year, you only need one pound of nitrogen per 1000 sq. ft. split into two application's over the next four week's. Alway's water fertilizer in with 1/2" of water. Do not put anything (including ironite or fertilizer) within a month of the first frost. Warm season grass goes dormant and turn's brown in the winter, that's normal. Don't put anything on the grass during dormancy, it's resting and doesn't need your help. It can dry out, especially new sod, but it probably won't with normal rainfall but you need to keep that in mind.

When spring roll's around (for you that will be March 15) shoot for 3/4 - 1 Lb. of nitrogen per 1000 sq. ft. per month from April to October. This will make you appreciate a good rotary spreader. Use this link to guide you.

http://austintexas.gov/sites/default...3_Chalmers.pdf

Start cutting back on the water gradually in about 10 - 14 day's. Anything that is in the shade cut back the water in 7 day's or so. Established grass in the shade only need's about 25% of the water and fertilizer that grass in full sun does. This is important, it can mean the difference between the grass surviving or not.

I know you probably only have a rotary mower, so mow as low as possible (for a rotary, that mean's 1 1/2 - 2") Mow when it's dry (late afternoon) and keep the blade's sharp.

Last edited by agrostis; 09-06-2013 at 08:26 PM.
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Old 09-06-2013, 09:35 PM
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BlazersandWildcats2009 BlazersandWildcats2009 is offline
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Agrostics,

I have a quick question. You just brought a whole new perspective to me. As I was using a knife to cut each piece of sod and I can clearly understand how this could have damaged the edge of the sod.

While I was researching the browning around the edges, I was thinking it could have been a Fungal problem. From possibly me watering and the weather has been really humid lately with a tropical storm that has been moving through. We've been having hot, dry, and rainy days, where the humidity was 46% the other day. I was thinking with the watering I may have ran into a fungi problem? If this was the case I would consider using corn meal, but now you are making me think it is from just cutting the sod around the edges.

Also when I was lifting the sod to check if roots were establishing, I noticed a couple of grubs. Could this be from the Alkaline soil 9.0? I also did some more research and found nematodes is a natural or organic cure for this problem?

Would either of the described situations seem correct to you? Are you affirmative on that browning around the edging is from the knife? How long will this take to recover?

As for the fertilization, what would you personally recommend for fertilization as in x-x-x over the next four weeks? Or would Ironite be a good substitute for the fertilizer?

I definitely did not cover the edges, I was totally clueless on that one. You may have mentioned earlier and it slipped my mind. If so, I apologize it's been a tiring few weeks.

As for mowing, I will be using a rotary lawn mower. I'm putting a brand new blade on before the first cutting. Are you saying to cut it this low because of the type of grass? I've always heard in areas around tree's to cut higher. Even though I'm getting sunlight to both sides of the lawn now, it's only a half a day on each side. So if you could help me understand why to cut it so low?

As for the frost, I doubt we'll see that anytime soon. Were still breaking 100's. Been lucky to get a few 90 days with a storm scattering around. Somehow, we manage to keep getting the thunder and lightning and little rain. I will definitely cut back on the water (more in the shaded areas.) I was thinking about on the second week going to one good watering right before sun-up, and a light water in the evening. Or would you suggest one watering in the early morning on the second-third week? After a month or two, I've read this type of grass should only need water one-time a week in normal conditions, possibly two, under these heat conditions?

Thank you for your time and diligence to guiding me through this, if you don't mind me sending me your email I would like to discuss something with you!


Also ignore any of my questions earlier about the Fungi, if I was completely inaccurate, it was just something I had read lots about with this type of grass and thought I shouldn't rule it out yet.

Thanks again!
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Old 09-06-2013, 10:20 PM
agrostis agrostis is offline
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It's not uncommon to worry about fungus but with a warm season grass you don't have to worry much at all. Warm season grass' just don't have much disease pressure.

It's totally normal to have a few grub's in the soil, you only have to be concerned when you have more than a certain number in a square foot. This is called the threshold number and is regionally dependent. Check with your local ag. extension service for this number and how to test accurately for it.

It doesn't apply here but i am not a fan of corn gluten meal or nematode's as a curative for turfgrass disease.

I would use starter fertilizer, 18-24-12 or 20-20-20, whatever you use think of this fertilizer in term's of pound's of nitrogen per 1000 sq. ft.

If your pH is at 9.0 then you need to use use elemental powdered sulfur to get the pH down to around 7. Don't drag your feet on this, it affect's the grass' ability to grow and take's a couple of month's to be effective. But be aware that it stink's, a lot.
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Old 09-06-2013, 10:40 PM
agrostis agrostis is offline
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As far as cutting low, zoysia need's to be cut as low as that mower will go, if you had a reel mower then 1" would be ideal. But you don't so shoot for 1 1/2". It look's so much better at that height. If you are watering and fertilizing properly for shaded area's then mowing zoysia low shouldn't be a problem.

When you cut back on the water, water twice a day for 1 week then water once a day, early in the morning, the week after that that. Then once a day every 2 day's then once a day every 3rd day, then as needed. You want to make the root's hunt water, if you watered every day the root's would never grow, they wouldn't have to with the water coming to them.
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Old 09-07-2013, 08:52 AM
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BlazersandWildcats2009 BlazersandWildcats2009 is offline
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Agrostics,

Thanks for clearing all that information up. So for the fertilizer does this appear to be the correct choice seeing that it is suited for zoysia lawns? https://www1.zoysiafarms.com/prodspe...id=DAE5#ordnow

And as you stated in your first post two split applications? So I should apply 1/2 lb. for 1,000 sq. feet, then two weeks later apply another 1/2 lb.? And is this 20/20/20 a slow release or fast release? Thanks again for so much help man!

Edit* I am not using herbicides, but I had called and got some quotes for two initial spraying. One in November, and one in the Spring. So according to your post, I'm going to push the spray off until spring time, correct? And in the spring should I apply both sprayings next spring? Or one next spring and one next fall?

Thanks!
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Old 09-07-2013, 09:08 AM
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BlazersandWildcats2009 BlazersandWildcats2009 is offline
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Thank you for the information about the elemental sulphur also! I will get to work on that. I completely understand your watering schedule and how it would make the roots search for water and cause them to grow deeper. Valuable information!
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Old 09-07-2013, 09:39 AM
agrostis agrostis is offline
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Are you sure that you want to use a soluble fertilizer? It's a better way to apply but if your using a hose end sprayer it's a lot harder to get a even application, you can wind up with a tiger stripe effect pretty easily. It's also a lot more expensive. I would go with a cheaper, large prill, fast release, 50 pound bag of granular fertilizer from the hardware store, but you need a good rotary spreader for this, this is a sound investment, i would consider it.

Yes, you should split 1 pound of nitrogen into 2 application's, it's easier on the sod is the main reason. Alway's water fertilizer in thoroughly.

Personally, i wouldn't put down any pre-emergent herbicide's until next fall to control 2014/15 winter weed's, new sod just mean's weed's for the first year to me. I think a spring of 2014 application is too early for new zoysia sod, it's so delicate at that stage that a pre will set it back and that isn't worth it to me.
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Old 09-07-2013, 09:48 AM
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BlazersandWildcats2009 BlazersandWildcats2009 is offline
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Agrostics,

Thanks for that quick response. I just did a quick google search and that was the fertilizer I came up with. So I will look around at the fertilizers at the big box store today when I make the trip up there. Thanks for the weed advice also. So for the elemental powdered sulfur, is this something I should also be able to locate at the big box store? Any particular brand to look for? Also, I received your pm with your email addy. I'm going to shoot you an email when I get back from taking the daughter to the zoo this evening!

Thanks so much for all this information you have been willing to share with us!

Also, how much powder sulphur would you suggest spreading at 1,000 sq. feet?
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