Installing a New Lawn

Discussion in 'Landscape Maintenance' started by billpiper, Sep 22, 2011.

  1. billpiper

    billpiper LawnSite Member
    Messages: 82

    I'd like some help from you Ga / Southern members.

    I have an owner with a couple of properties that need lawns installed. he wants to do a fall seeding. Both lawns are pretty heavily shaded. The soil is GA. red clay.
    New at this but I think what I need to do is have the soil tested, amend with compost and fertilizer, till, seed, cover with hay to hold moisture, water. Planning to use fescue, probably need to use a slow release nitrogen fertilizer.

    Am I missing anything?
    Any suggestions for specific grass seed? No need to kill weeds, bare dirt.
    How fast are tillers?

    One of the yards has a large oak that provides the shade with the lowest limbs being about 15' up. The other yard has several trees with lims at 5 - 6' (smaller trees - maybe 20' high). one area is about 50' X 100', the other is 30 X 170'.

    Appreciate any help.
  2. Dr.NewEarth

    Dr.NewEarth LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,476

    Use a "starter fertilizer" The nitrogen content will be lower because you want roots to develop in your new lawn first.

    Nitrogen will make the grass blades grow, so use it later after germination is complete.
  3. billpiper

    billpiper LawnSite Member
    Messages: 82

    Dr. New Earth,
    Thanks for the response
  4. agrostis

    agrostis LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,545

    You are too far south to be using fescue. That is a cool season grass that can't handle Georgia summers. I would recommend El Toro zoysia for a shady southern lawn. But that is only available as sod. You can try a seeded variety but you wouldn't seed that until spring.
  5. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 19,635

    Fescue is popular around Atlanta, however it usually has to be overseeded every fall. Lime is very important and is cheap. I would mulch around the trees as wide as possible.

    The keys to fescue in the south are ....
    Lime early fall late fall late winter early spring late spring
    Fertlize late Janurary and 1 time per month until the end of May. Then wait till September to fertlize again
    After the last frost....... BAG all your grass clippings. Do not irragate during the day. Mow as high as you can......Do not mow when wet.
  6. billpiper

    billpiper LawnSite Member
    Messages: 82

    Thanks to Agrostis & Larry in Alabama for the reponses.
    Why bag after the first frost - just curious. These lawns are at rental homes. If the owner doesn't want the expense of a fertilzation program, what grass would you recommend?
  7. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Clay will make good use of grass clippings and they also provide cover for seed... grass under trees also need the clippings for their ecosystem separate from trees...
  8. larryinalabama

    larryinalabama LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 19,635

    Fescue is will get brown spot and mold due to the hummidy and day time rain here in the South. The grass can handle heat and drout and even grown good in Las Vegas. Its the moisture that stays on the grasss that kills it. Bagging eliminates decay of dead or cut grass thus cutting back on mold and or brown spot. Theres spray that helps but most of the time fall overseeding is necessary

    On rental property that no one cares that much about generallly amounts to whatever grows on its own

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