Best technique for growing grass in shade?

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by NJlandscaper908, Apr 8, 2011.

  1. NJlandscaper908

    NJlandscaper908 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 37

    What have you guys found to be the best technique for growing grass in shady areas in zone 6? I've always spread the topsoil then thrown shade seed down and raking it in then topdressing it with more seed, apply penn-mulch then a little salt hay. This has been hit or miss for me, sometimes it comes in strong then some dies and it thins out and i have to re-seed or it never comes in strong to begin with. I always put the customer on a watering schedule but it still sometimes doesn't work.

    Are there any tricks you guys use or seed you use to get the same perfect results every time?
  2. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

    Till, Till well.

    Then Landscape the area.....
  3. Mark Oomkes

    Mark Oomkes LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 15,290


    Hostas and ferns. Maybe some rhodies and azaleas.
  4. Don't grow it
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  5. indplstim

    indplstim LawnSite Member
    Messages: 69

    Cut down the trees!
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  6. NJlandscaper908

    NJlandscaper908 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 37

    I do till it...hahaha thanks guys
  7. bigslick7878

    bigslick7878 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 809

    Use creeping red fescue, the proper seed. Most "shade mixes" don't contain enough, look at the back of the bag and if it is near 50% you are good to go. Most are only around 20%.
  8. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    What kind of shade is it? Buildings or trees... Tree are competing with the turf for everything and will need to have their own little eco-system in place to survive. The sun is already shining on the north side of buildings now so there is a chance to grow around those too.

    Are you fertilizing too much? Mulch mowing? Proper cultural practices become even more critical in the shade...
  9. NJlandscaper908

    NJlandscaper908 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 37

    Depends on the job, mostly trees, sometimes houses. I usually hit it with nitrogen in the beginning to get it going then put it on a regular program when it gets established.

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