Getting Rid of Straw

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by SteveG66, May 8, 2004.

  1. SteveG66

    SteveG66 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 39

    Hey guys (and ladies), I found this site a couple days ago and can't keep myself away...I haven't found this subject before so I thought I'd ask.

    At the suggestion of my father-in-law (farmer), we seeded our new yard, 1/2 acre last summer. We used, with help, copius amounts of straw after seeding. The straw is heaviest in the backyard, so much that I think it has impeded the growth of a lot of the seed. Well this year, we are going to over seed most of the lawn to fill in some of the bare spots, filling in sink holes, etc.

    Is there anything that I can use to get rid of the straw? I know, I will not use straw again, learned my lesson.

    Thanks for all of the great replies.

    Have a great spring.
    SteveG
     
  2. Hawkeye5

    Hawkeye5 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 295

    Sounds as though you may have used to much straw and sowed the seed at the wrong time. You should be able to see around 50% of the ground after spreading the straw. The real purpose of using straw is to hold moisture for the seed. I overseeded some large bare and thin spots for a customer last fall with tall fescue in the sunny areas and creeping fescue in the shade. I can no longer see any straw in the yard. Use a mulching mower to help clean it up. Cool season grasses should be sown in the fall, warm season grasses in late spring/early summer. In your area I gather you used bluegrass or tall fescue? If so, do your overseeding in the fall so the roots have established themselves before hot weather sets in. Also, use certified seed and a cultivar that works with the enviromental situation of your yard.
     
  3. SteveG66

    SteveG66 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 39

    Hawkeye, Thanks for the reply, You are certainly correct. We planted the seed in July...Had to for the Mortgage Co., Didn't know what to expect from it. Actually, got pretty lucky, it turned out pretty well.

    What are considered warm season grasses and cool season grasses?

    Thanks for the help.

    BTW- I figured I'd seed slice the new seed in, I may end up using a dethatcher first to clean up the straw.

    Thanks again,
    SteveG
     
  4. Hawkeye5

    Hawkeye5 LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 295

    Bluegrass and Tall Fescues are cool season grasses. Bermuda is an example of warm season grass. You should not have much if any warm season grasses in your area as you are to far north.
    Slit seeders will do a much better job of providing seed/soil contact and increase germination rates. Clausen now makes a self-propelled slit-seeder that is much less work than pushing the manual units. I saw one at the Expo last year. You may be able to rent them by now. Make sure the ground is dry. Using a slit seeder when the ground is wet is a super pain in the neck and other body parts. Personally, I would still use some straw as cover to hold in moisture, just don't use to much.
     

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