Attention Rhode Island Landscapers/LCO's

Discussion in 'Network: North' started by FerrisDiesel, Dec 29, 2011.

  1. lawnsbysteveRI

    lawnsbysteveRI LawnSite Member
    Posts: 37

    Hey guys, got a question. I have a new customer this year who just bought a house that is almost entirely crabgrass. If they don't want the expense of sod, I'm curious what you guys think I should do. I have a dethatcher and a slice seeder. Should I dethatch and slice seed, and if I do how long do I have to wait after the grass is germinated before I can put down a crabgrass preemergent. I know you can't do both since the preemergent will kill the grass seed. I've used Tupersan in the past and haven't been that impressed. The other option besides slice seeding and starter fertilizer would be to hit it with crabgrass preemergent 3X (4/1, 5/1, and 6/1) like I usually do with my customers. But if I do that will the good grass fill in when it's all crabgrass right now? What are your thoughts
     
  2. ralph02813

    ralph02813 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from Charlestown, RI
    Posts: 1,041

    I will probably answer differently from everyone else, so here goes -
    1.) have the soil tested - this time of year you should be able to get it back in a week
    2.) dethatch and over seed with a rye perennial, wait until the soil is regularly above 55 degrees. Use rye in the spring so you will get really cuttable grass in a few weeks - remember crab grass really doesn't start growing till it gets hot and it doesn't like competition.
    3. fertilize with the appropriate mix. I would prefer organic
    4.) come fall get out aerator and over-seed with a nice perennial mix and top dress with some nice organic compost from Merner and next year you won't recognize the lawn.
     
  3. lawnsbysteveRI

    lawnsbysteveRI LawnSite Member
    Posts: 37

    Thanks for the thoughts ralph. I'm curious what it will look like around June and July. The house is on the water and I'm assuming they will want it to look nice for this summer. Will enough grass seed germinate? My thought was to dethatch and slice seed at the beginning of April. Will it be safe to put an application down of preemergent at the beginning of June and July?
     
  4. lawnsbysteveRI

    lawnsbysteveRI LawnSite Member
    Posts: 37

    sorry. I meant an application at the beginning of May and June, so 1 month after slice seeding.
     
  5. ralph02813

    ralph02813 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from Charlestown, RI
    Posts: 1,041

    Steve the reason I suggest a perennial rye is that you should be mowing in just a few weeks. Rye germinates fast in 5 days you should have baby grass - forget the preemergent the only thing it will do is year the good stuff. Crab grass hates good grass, it grow where there is no good grass, If you want try putting down a 19-19-19 Allens'. I have gone entirely organic this year so no killers just healthy soil :)
     
  6. Thanksman

    Thanksman LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,695

    Hows it going gentleman? Havent been hete in a while.Im steve if anyone remembers me.
    Posted via Mobile Device
     
  7. rlmlandscape

    rlmlandscape LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 395

    Look into renting skidsteer with a harley rake on it. Go over the lawn with the harley rake which will till the soil and remove and rocks from it. Add soil in the areas needed to level off the lawn or to help incorporate good soil into the existing soil if it is poor soil and create a finish grade. Then look into getting someone in to hydroseed the lawn. This would be more costly then what ralph has suggested but would give a quicker result.
     
  8. lawnsbysteveRI

    lawnsbysteveRI LawnSite Member
    Posts: 37

    Thanks for the responses Ralph and Ryan. If I were to put a quick germinating Rye down in the spring, how would it look in the fall and next year if in the fall I put down an endophyte grass seed. Will it eventually turn into the endophyte that I want or will it be mostly just rye? And on the same note, my mom has a large section in her backyard of zosiagrass. If I were to slice seed with Endophyte, will the endophyte eventually take over and the zosiagrass eventually disappear?
     
  9. ralph02813

    ralph02813 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Male, from Charlestown, RI
    Posts: 1,041

    Ryan, the idea for using the rye is that it germinates very quickly, it will look the same next fall and spring. The purpose for using rye is to quickly crowd out the crab grass don't forget come late June and July, the hot months you want to be cutting as close to 4" as possible to provide shade for the grass, crab grass hates shade and it loves open spaces to grow. Come fall aerate and do a mixed over-seeding with a mixture that includes a tall and red fecus, top dress if you can with a non animal waste compost. Not that familiar with the use of endophytes I know they have a mutual relationship with plants and that attach them selves to seed, but I am not sure if that seed is best from plants that have seeded;. if so it might impact germination of fresh seeded property.
     
  10. Thanksman

    Thanksman LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,695

    Everyone ready for this season. ... My equipment is now prepped.
    Posted via Mobile Device
     

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