It just won't Grow!

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by Hamons, Oct 4, 2003.

  1. Hamons

    Hamons LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    Hoping that maybe some of the experts on here will be able to help me out.

    I have one yard which I seeded this Fall that just is not growing in well at all.

    It was seeded on September 7 with 80% fesuce and 20% Rye mixture from SRO Seed. The germination has been terrible and the grass is still very spindly and weak looking. Other yards seeded that smae time are tall and lush. Same process -- same seed blend -- same amount.

    This is what I did. First, sprayed with drive 75 and primo maxx. Waited a week and then aerated, spread seed and fertilizer and then verticut it in.

    One possible x factor is that the cutomer lives in a maintenace free community and another large lawn care company takes care of all the weed control and fertilizer. I called and checked because I was afraid they might have sprayed something just prior to seeding that would have messed it up. They said it didn't look like they had done anything out there for a few months -- and then it was a threeway with quicksilver. Did not seem real sure of himself however.

    The soil is very poor -- hard clay mostly with lots of submerged rocks. Also, although I have tried to get the homeowner to keep mowers off the yard -- I was over there and it ahd been mowed atleast twicew judging by the stripes inthe lawn.

    I feel bad about this lawn because it does not look like I expect it to. Has this ever happened to anyone else -- if so -- what did you do?

    Thanks for your input guys!
  2. KenH

    KenH LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Messages: 1,622

    Take a soil test. Your pH may be so out of whack, nutrients are unavailable to the grass plant.
  3. paponte

    paponte LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,366

    I will 2nd that. :cool:
  4. qualitylandscaping

    qualitylandscaping LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,581

    I would say either soil PH or a difference in the environment (shade, sun, pets on the lawn, wind blowing seed away, mowing too early, etc)..
  5. brucec32

    brucec32 LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,403

    Perhaps they put a fall app of preemergent on it and either didn't record it properly or put it on after you called and before you seeded. That would but the kibosh on the new seedlings.
  6. mtdman

    mtdman LawnSite Gold Member
    Messages: 3,143

    From the sounds of it, it could be any number of things. Unfortunately, you cannot control the conditions once you leave the yard. It's a difficult spot to be in.

    I'd test the soil for pH. Sounds like the soil sucks anyway with that clay.

    Good luck.

  7. Hamons

    Hamons LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 706

    Got the soil test results back.

    Soil pH 7.4 6.0-6.8
    Buffer pH
    Organic Matter 3.3 %
    Phosphorus 20 ppm 29-48
    Potassium 295 ppm 162-251
    Magnesium 274 ppm 227-377
    Calcium 5577 ppm 1804-2525
    CEC 18
    K Saturation 4.2 %
    Mg Saturation 12.7 %
    Ca Saturation 83.2 %

    Fertilizer Recommendations for #375 Fescue, Turf Blend, Seeding
    Nutrient Amount Unit
    Lime [CaCO3] 0.0 lbs/1000 sqft
    Nitrogen 0.0 lbs/1000 sqft
    Magnesium 0.2 lbs/1000 sqft
    Calcium 0.0 lbs/1000 sqft
    Sulfur 8.8 lbs/1000 sqft

    Have always thought of the CA saturation as important if adding lime -- calcitic or dolomitic. But what effect does super high CA ratios have on the soil?

    I'm thinking baout adding a layer of compost over the lawn thisfall and dormant seeding. I'm still alittle in the air though.

    - jeff
  8. crazygator

    crazygator LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,048

    Did your customer water it daily after your seeding it? Do you mow this customers lawn?
  9. Green in Idaho

    Green in Idaho LawnSite Senior Member
    from Idaho
    Messages: 833

    Are there seeds on the surface that did not germinate?

    If no,
    perhaps the quantity/distribution of seeds was not enough. Since they mowed, whatever grass was there was at least tall enough to mow, so if the 'thickness' of the grass is the concern it may be related to qty of seeds.
  10. KenH

    KenH LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Messages: 1,622

    Is 5% OM the norm???

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