Overseeding

Discussion in 'Sports Field Management' started by jonthepain, Aug 3, 2010.

  1. jonthepain

    jonthepain LawnSite Senior Member
    from Raleigh
    Posts: 522

    I am an assistant city league football coach, (high school age kids,) and our league president told me the other day that he would like to overseed one of the fields that we play on.

    I own a couple of aerators and told him that I'd be glad to aerate it for him but expressed doubts as to whether it would be worth putting seed out now, considering the time of year, the fact that games will be starting in a few weeks, and especially considering that the field is not irrigated.

    I'll post some photos of the field when I get the camera back from my wife :eek:

    I haven't seen it since last season but it was typically compacted between the 40's and hash marks last fall.

    Do you all have any suggestions?

    Thanks!
    jon
     
  2. fl-landscapes

    fl-landscapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,542

    probably not a good time of year to seed. the weather and the fact that they will be playing on it soon. Aerating might help but it might also expose roots to the heat which wouldnt be good so I wouldnt do that unless you top dress as well. Hopefully someone closer to your area with sports field experience will chime in
     
  3. jonthepain

    jonthepain LawnSite Senior Member
    from Raleigh
    Posts: 522

    Thanks fl. Those were my thoughts also, but it always helps to get some other opinions.
     
  4. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,298

    What is the turf type and cost of your seed?
     
  5. jonthepain

    jonthepain LawnSite Senior Member
    from Raleigh
    Posts: 522

    Haven't been out there in a year, so the best I can say is that it's fescue.

    Have not priced seed, but the league would provide it. (This would be a community service type thing for me.)

    Sorry for the sketchy details, K. I'd run up there and take some photos for you all but my wife has the camera and she's up in the mountains on a mother / daughter rafting trip.
     
  6. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,298

    With fescue, I will recommend throwing out a generic seed mix multiple times in the fall and spring (beyond a planned overseed), just to get seed out there. Some of it will germinate and grow, some won't. Helps to keep the turf thick and if you can get seed in bulk, it won't be that expensive either.
     
  7. jonthepain

    jonthepain LawnSite Senior Member
    from Raleigh
    Posts: 522

    Thanks, K. I'm not sure if it will make sense to overseed during football season. They literally play four games on that field every Saturday in September and October. (There are four age groups in the league.)
     
  8. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,298

    Throwing some seed out is not really like a one time planned overseed. If you are fighting general thinning, then I feel it is a good idea to get seed out there. It might be worth it to try an aggressive overseeding program for a season just to see what results you get. You might also pre-soak the seeds in order to get quicker germination and establishment which might lead to better results ... however that obviously increases your labor input.
     
  9. jonthepain

    jonthepain LawnSite Senior Member
    from Raleigh
    Posts: 522

    would you recommend rye for it's quick germination? and wait till sept., or throw some out now?
     
  10. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,298

    That is your choice. There is some research being done on rye overseed with bluegrass for sports turf (David Minner out of Iowa State I believe), which I imagine is what prompted the question.

    I personally don't like rye, nor do I feel it is the best choice for a non-irrigated field.
     

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