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Germination of bluegrass and fescue

RigglePLC

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Grand Rapids MI
An indoor test compared germination of Midnight (about 2 years old) and generic Kentucky bluegrass (purchased fall 2020). After 10 days, Midnight germinated on a wet paper towel at about 50 percent; the longest sprout was about 1/2 inch. The blue germinated at about 60%; the longest sprout was 3/4 inch.
Sown into topsoil the longest sprout for Midnight was 3/4 inch. Generic bluegrass about the same. Seeded over a quarter-inch layer of dead grass; there has not been much germination so far.

Tall fescue seeded over soil, and over 1/2 inch of dead grass attained a height of about 3 inches.
 

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RigglePLC

RigglePLC

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Grand Rapids MI
As an indoor test, a pinch or about 50 seeds of Kentucky bluegrass cultivar "Midnight", was sown on topsoil. This was compared when seeds were placed under or secondly over, 1/4 inch dead grass clippings. A third sample was sown between-- under 1/4 inch of dead grass and over a half-inch of dead grass clippings.
After 13 days at 70 F, the Midnight seed on soil was growing best, with the tallest sprout at 2 inches tall. Seeds sown between layers with dead grass both under and over the seed, sprouted almost as well. When seed was sown over, or under 1/4 inch dead grass, germination was about half-as much.
 

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RigglePLC

RigglePLC

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Grand Rapids MI
As a follow-up, at 20 days the Midnight Kentucky bluegrass seeded and grown indoors at a soil temperature of 70 degrees F, attained a maximum height of 2.5 inches. The seed sown on topsoil with a layer of dead grass clippings both under and over the seed germinated and grew about equal to the seed on topsoil (UTC)--or perhaps slightly better.
This was faster than expected. The soil temperature of 70 was probably near ideal.

This brings up the question: how to provide a layer of grass clippings over the seed?
 

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RigglePLC

RigglePLC

LawnSite Fanatic
Location
Grand Rapids MI
At 33 days (indoors) after sowing bluegrass seed (generic and Midnight) and generic turf type tall fescue seed--the new grass seedlings were treated with Drive herbicide--except for untreated controls.
After 3 days there was no sign of injury.

Seed of Midnight and generic bluegrass which had been sown on paper towels indoors at 70 degrees--to test for germination--was later placed in a window for light.
Some of the seed emerged at the top edge of the paper towels. The tallest sprouts were about an inch high at 33 days old.
 
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