Southern guys, Bermuda discussion thread

Discussion in 'Pesticide & Herbicide Application' started by macgyver_GA, May 18, 2013.

  1. macgyver_GA

    macgyver_GA LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 826

    Oh ok cool. Yeah it's storming pretty good here in Canton. The thunder is such a deep long rumble, it's rattling everything in my house.
     
  2. greendoctor

    greendoctor LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,938

    Tifgrand is a lot greener and denser under less than ideal mowing conditions. Even common looks better under low fertility conditions. I consider Tifway an inferior grass. Color is terrible. Tendency is for it to be fine leaved, but leggy. Cannot take any shading. Needs too much nitrogen and iron to stay green. Also has to be reel mowed EOD at those high fertility rates. I think the best place for it is on sports fields with the maintenance budget or golf fairways. Not home or commercial landscapes.
     
  3. greendoctor

    greendoctor LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,938

    You might also consider Celebration. It too, stays greener on lower rates of N and does not stretch that much. For lawns that cannot be mowed EOD, Tifgreen works well in Hawaii. Tifway 419 is fast growing and leggy. Tifgreen is rather slow growing. A lot of homeowners had Tifdwarf as their home lawn. That changed when the Take All plague hit in the 1990's. Most home lawns are now either El Toro or Emerald zoysia, with some seashore paspalum. Seashore paspalum is another grass that does not belong outside of a golf course or high budget sports field.
     
  4. IRRITECH

    IRRITECH LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 931

    It's not what we want to put down, it's what is there and what the builders install. $1M+ homes are sodded with 419. At $85/pallet it is the grass of choice in the Atlanta metro area, even newly sodded, non irrigated turf will survive. Very few people will pay for an upgrade. Sad but true.
     
  5. IRRITECH

    IRRITECH LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 931

    Tif Grand is not a cure all. If you research it, it still needs 6 hours of direct sunlight to perform well. Yep, thats a 25% decrease in the amount of sun needed. But 6 hours is still 6 hours.
     
  6. macgyver_GA

    macgyver_GA LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 826

    Yeah, that's what I read about it. I'm curious to see if it lives up to those claims for anyone who has experience with it. We'll see how it holds up in his backyard.
     
  7. TCW

    TCW LawnSite Member
    Posts: 35

    Here in Texas, sod choices are either 419 or St. Augustine for new home construction. Some retailers around her offer Zoysia or Celebration, but charge way too much- upwards of $300 per pallet picked up at their store. I've got 419 in my lawn and I reel mow every other day with a 10 blade Mcclane, but I know that we have the luxury to care for our own lawns much more than our clients'! I just put out an app of Scotts GreenMax (22-2-2 with 5.75% Iron) that has my lawn growing like crazy, and as green as I've ever seen.

    All of the residential properties we service have Tif419, and we mow them weekly. We chose to tailor our residential client list to only hybrid Bermuda, mainly because only the newer, larger homes are sodded with it. We differentiate ourselves from the competition by offering full service "golf course look" packages, and we aren't cheap- we don't bother with customers who want the cheapest price. All of our properties are set up at a monthly, 12 month price, which includes spring scalping, leveling, fertilization, and all mowing.

    We are the only company in our area that utilizes reel mowers to mow hybrid Bermuda, and our 2 John Deere triplex reel mowers (purchased from the local Country Club where they were used to mow tees and fairways) are bench set at 1/2". As the temps climb to the upper 90s and into the 100s, I'll raise the height to 9/16" or even 5/8", depending on how much rain we get. All of the turf is thriving right now at this height, and we really aren't seeing many weeds with the combination of height and pre-emergent we put on in February.

    Our program includes A-Vert pre-emergent twice yearly (February and October), and up to 4 fertilizations (13-0-13 in Feb, May, August, October) depending on temps and rainfall. We offer other services on a client-by-client basis like soil samples, iron applications, and spot weed control. We've been hit really hard with a drought lately so watering restrictions are pretty tight and we can only water once per week inside the city limits. We recommend a deep infrequent watering to establish a strong root system that can withstand drought better, and so far we are seeing great results. Changing out a sprinkler head the other day, I measured 7" deep roots on the turf I dug out at a property we've had on our program for 4 years.

    Our next growth area may be into smaller new construction with hybrid Bermuda. I really believe that, in the cookie cutter neighborhoods, if one lawn looks immaculate then the neighbors will start to want theirs to look the same, and we can build a large clientele within a very small area to maximize our time. A 3 man crew with a 25" Tru-Cut, weedeater, and edger can knock out 4 properties in an hour if they are all on the same block. Gone are the days of common Bermuda and mowing at 3", we all know 419 and other hybrids look terrible when they get that tall. Once homeowners start to realize the stark difference in aesthetics and overall turf health, reel mowing might see a huge increase, whether that be homeowner's purchasing their own, or hiring a professional.
     
  8. greendoctor

    greendoctor LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,938

    Want to kick it up a notch higher? Stop using string for horizontal trimming. Use a Maruyama Landscape blade instead. No point in reel cutting a lawn and leaving the trim areas frayed and/or cut crooked.
     
  9. greendoctor

    greendoctor LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 8,938

    The local sod grower tells people not to use Tifgrand in less than 6 hours of sun. He would prefer you use St Augustine in that situation instead.
     
  10. Amen.
    Posted via Mobile Device
     

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