Looking at Organic Options

Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by MarcSmith, Jan 29, 2008.

  1. MarcSmith

    MarcSmith LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,157

    OK I'm lazy, I knwo I could have searched the organic are for options....

    With all the green talk going around campus....id like to start exploring options on organic ferts. That way if we get pressured into making the switch, the research has been done and we are ready to pull the trigger..so to speak...

    I'll still stick with chemicals for now for my insect and weed control.

    my current program is 4 apps of granular fert with fall aeration and overseed. with some spring overseed and aeration in the trouble spots.

    24-0-11 50% PPscu 2 FE 1 MN @ .75 lbs N per 1000sqft in april

    18-24-12 25% ppscu @ 1 lb N per 1000- sqft in Septemeber

    24-0-11 50% PPscu 2 FE 1 MN @ 1.b N per 100sqft late oct, early Nov

    32-5-7 50% ppscu @ 1lb N per 1000 sq ft in December
     
  2. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,298

    IMHO, the goal is to get the soil to a place where inputs are rare. So to that end, don't focus on finding organic replacements for chem ferts, but instead look to move the entire system in a sustainable direction.

    That being said, the ATTR list.

    http://attra.ncat.org/attra-pub/orgfert.php
     
  3. lawncuttinfoo

    lawncuttinfoo LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,010

    That site is having problems allowing search by state or search by product category.

    And I can't find any info on turf grass there only farming.
     
  4. MarcSmith

    MarcSmith LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,157

    but the problem is I don't think that the soil will ever be "self sustaining. we already don't pick up grass, unless ist right before a big event like graduation or it clumps really bad. Too many trees to mulch up the leaves and let em lie.

    We are looking at a shredder such that I can start making my own mulch/compost. to eliminate trips to the dump and save a few hundred yards of mulch/compost a year but thats probably a few years away.
     
  5. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,298

    :confused: Just tried it, by state works for me. What state are you looking for?
     
  6. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,298

    I would agree as long as your trying to maintain a system that is removing water and nutrients faster than the soil can naturally supply. It is a delicate balancing act that requires keeping a sufficient amount of organic material and biological populations present to keep nutrient cycling active.
     
  7. ICT Bill

    ICT Bill LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,115

    Hey Marc
    The national park service started last fall with an organic program for the national mall right in front of the capitol.
    They have done 3 panels (large rectangles that are surrounded by sidewalks) the first panel is the way they have always done business, the second is replacing synthetic ferts with organic ones and the third is using only compost and compost teas.
    The results so far are a stunning constrast with the third panel thick and rich with new turf (they overseeded all three panels), the second one not as nice but OK and the first...... well..... no comparison to the others.

    You should walk by one day and check it out. They will be doing this for 3 years to see what the long term implications are.
    Right now all 3 areas are roped off so that the turf can get going before they let people on it.
    If the campus is really serious about going "green" they need to look at all of the food waste that is being thrown away and should be composted. They should also send you to the National Composting Cousils expo in February so that you can learn how to compost correctly with no smell. and get you an attachment for your new bob cat to shred limbs and leaves
     
  8. lawncuttinfoo

    lawncuttinfoo LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,010

    It's working now for me too, must have been a glitch.

    But I still can't find any info on turfgrass soils there.
     
  9. quiet

    quiet LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 720

    A small university here in our town switched to strictly activated sewage sludge for all their fertilizing requirements several years ago. They have kept the soccer fields in beautiful condition, and a small 9-hole public golf course where the greens are also very good.

    The campus grounds and fairways of the golf course are usually acceptable looking, but they suffer during the summer as they are not irrigated.

    I think that's a great place to start.
     
  10. DUSTYCEDAR

    DUSTYCEDAR LawnSite Fanatic
    from PA
    Posts: 5,137

    is there pics of the mall on line anywhere to see the progress
     

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