Is there any way to "Jump Start" grass seed?

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by Bob E, Mar 30, 2005.

  1. Bob E

    Bob E LawnSite Member
    Posts: 60

    In what seems a never ending battle against a drainage problem, I brought in 15 tons of topsoil and moved it around with a dingo last weekend. I have not been able to seed it yet because of recent rains. However the rains did show me that I may have drainage problem solved (fingers crossed).

    This weekend looks good though. This dirt went into different areas of the back yard I'd guess to say maybe 2,000 to 3,000 ft2, everything else is fine.

    We have a little thing here in Louisville, KY called the Kentucky Derby and every year we have a derby party. Is there any way that I can "jump start" the tri-glod transition blend seed I bought from Lesco to have it looking good in 5 weeks?

    I also have the lesco starter fertilizer and the Lesco seed starter (i think that is what it was called) that acts as a mulch to keep the seed moist.

    Is there anything else that I can do other than water the heck out of it? What about compost tea?
  2. wally world III

    wally world III LawnSite Member
    Posts: 128

    starter fertilizer 20-10-10
    this time of year should be fine
  3. DLS1

    DLS1 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,619

    Wally World that is fertilizer more for greening up existing grass since the first number is higher than the other two. I will let you figure out what the 3 numbers represent.

    A starter fertilizer is where the middle number is bigger than the other two numbers. A starter fertilizer would be something like 8-22-15.
  4. Bob E

    Bob E LawnSite Member
    Posts: 60

    I already have the Lesco 18-24-12 fertilizer.

    I'm thinking about seeding some annual ryegrass with the tri-gold fescue to try to get it green quick...does this make sense?
  5. DLS1

    DLS1 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,619

    I am not sure what that blend is for but Lesco people are usually pretty good at selling you what works for your situation.

    Have you had a landscape company look at your drainage problem? French drains might help resolve all or most of your problem.

    Wait until the grass gets 2 or 3" tall before mowing it.
  6. sodgod

    sodgod LawnSite Member
    Posts: 107

    I've put the bag of seed in a trash bucket full of water. I heard that doing this for like 24-48 hours jump starts them. Like i said i've tried it once before and it does seem to grow in the ground faster. It gives the seeds a head start with lots of water. Give it a try maybe? has anyone else heard of this before?
  7. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,342

    Try seeding without using any fertilizer, this will speed up germination. Keep ground moist not sopping wet. fertilize two weeks after planting. Go to the drug store and buy one of those products that is supposed to grow hair on bald men. Read the lable and if it contains a enzyme called cellolase you can soak your seed in it for a couple of hours before planting and that will help also. The cellolase wont grow hair but the enzyme will help remove the husk from the seed by breaking down the cellose fiber, this will allow moisture into the seed flushing out the preemergent chemical that are contained inside the seed. If you are using Kentucky blue grass, place the seed in the refridgerator for a couple of days before planting. KBG is one of the few grass seeds that will benefit from this procedure.
  8. Bob E

    Bob E LawnSite Member
    Posts: 60


    To seed without starter fertilizer seems counterproductive to me... but I'm game for anything.... I assume the starter fert is what you would put down two weeks later....

    The Tri-Gold blend from Lesco is a blend of three different turf type tall fescues (Larime, Laredo and Bravo if I remeber right).
  9. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,342

    How much fertilizer can a seed consume. The answer is none. The seed wont use any of the fertilizer until after it has germinated. Also fertilizer is a salt. Salt will compete with the seed for the available moisture. It takes moisture to make a seed germinate. All seeds contain a pre emergent chemical to prevent premature germination. It takes moisture to flush these chemicals from the seed. Once the chemicals are flushed from the seed the seedling will emerge from the seed hull and start putting down roots, at this time fertilizer will benefit the new seedling and produce a flush of growth. Your fescue blend of seeds should germinate in approx two weeks and at this time you can use a good starter fertilizer.
  10. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Posts: 4,900

    Place your seed in the freezer overnite and then take it out and seed it when the ground is warm. And keep it moist, going from the cold to warm "wakes " the seed up and gets it to germinate in a couple of days If it Rye, Fescue will take 5-7 days to germinate

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