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just a thought

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by oneandonlyjojo, Oct 5, 2004.

  1. oneandonlyjojo

    oneandonlyjojo LawnSite Member
    from NY
    Messages: 125

    i was wondering is there any method for lets say grass seeds where u germinate them before you plant them to accelerate the growth or anything. or am i just completely stupid
  2. chris28

    chris28 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 31

    Yep....I think they call it sod. :D
  3. impactlandscaping

    impactlandscaping LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,332

    As far as regular seeding, I don't think pre germination will be vaible, but for hydroseeding, I have soaked seed overnight to split it to expedite germination as recommended by a fellow hydroseeder. I didn't notice a difference in establishment, but it was certainly slower getting it loaded into the machine from buckets without losing any. I get better results from using bio stimulants and surfactants to hold the fertilizer and seed slurry together better.
    NC Scaper likes this.
  4. olderthandirt

    olderthandirt LawnSite Platinum Member
    from here
    Messages: 4,899

    Allright one more secret, throw the bag of seed in the freezer for a couple days before using it. The shock of going from freezing to warm ground temps will make it germinate a little sooner. And I have soaked a a few bags over nite and got a day or two sooner germination.

  5. Liberty Lawncare

    Liberty Lawncare LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 484

    Freezer wow thats a cool idea (no pun intended) how much faster will it germinate?
    The wife would be pizzed if I did that :realmad:
  6. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,497

    Treat it with glyphosate (Roundup). This speeds up the germination rate, as well.
  7. out4now

    out4now LawnSite Bronze Member
    from AZ
    Messages: 1,796

    We used to do it and it germinates a couple of days earlier. Got to pump air into the water though or change it. We just used a fish tank bubbler.
  8. GroundKprs

    GroundKprs LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,969

    Grass seed germinates by absorbing moisture and swelling until the hull cracks open. Pre-soaking can thus accelerate germination after seed application to soil. But seed must be soaked and dried in cycles. I forget the actual numbers, but something like 4-6 cycles of soaking 4-6 hours and drying 10-12 hours. Just soaking seed for a few days will start it rotting.

    Pre-soaking is not usually worth the effort. It is used in special circumstances, like the Super Bowl in the 70s that was played on a field seeded 28 days before the game. In that case, the seed was already germinated when applied, so growth was immediate. There was also intense planning and management that would hardly be economically acceptable on ornamental turf.

    I never wait more than 7 days for germination on my seedings, usually 5-6 days. Had a ryegrass job this summer that I had to start mowing 2 weeks and 1 day after seeding. Of course, this was a client who paid strict attention to irrigation instructions.
  9. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,341

    This is a pretty good secret but, it only works with bluegrass, you will find little effect on ryes and fescues. The process is call scarifieing the seed. Some seeds need to be exposed to cold weather before proper germination. More commonly found with bulb type plants but has shown to work with KBG to a certqain extent. Little effect on other grass types.

    The process of soaking and drying the seed is call priming. Properly primed and dried seed can be stored for several months before planting. The goal is to flush out the pre-emergent chemicals that are contained in all seed types that prevent them from germinating before proper conditions are available. One needs to stop short of the actuall seed germination whenever priming seed. Once the seed has germinated it will quickly die if allowed to dry out.

    Pregeminating seed is similar to priming the seed in that the seed is soaked in water to flush out the pre-emergent chemicals but ones does not stop short of germination. A good way to get quick growth when the conditions are known before planting. For instance, the weather man is calling for heavy rain a few days after your seeding date and you need fast growth to help prevent erosion. Pregerminating the seed will produce a little faster growth but in most cases the amount of time saved is only a coupe of days so one must figure in the time required to pregerminate the seed versus simply planting it and letting mother nature take its course.

    The treating of the seed with chemicals such as glysophate is another method of scarfieing the seed. The chemicals are meant to fracture the seed hull letting moisture seep into the seed and flush the natural pre-emergent chemicals from the seed. This is the exact same method that bio-stimulants use. The bio-stimulant usually contain micro-organisms that attact the seed hull breaking it down a little quicker simply because of the number of micro-organisms that are present.

    I have soaked whole bags of seed in water as well and have noticed what seems like faster emergent of the seed. I have found that the faster germination is usually not worth the extra effort.
    impactlandscaping and work_it like this.
  10. green with envy

    green with envy LawnSite Member
    Messages: 219

    We too hve tried pre-germination. "soaking". it was a bigger pain than it's worth. didn't really see a noticable germination. If I had a big enough freezer I might try that.


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