New home owner has questions...

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by jaytee, Sep 24, 2003.

  1. jaytee

    jaytee LawnSite Member
    Messages: 26

    greetings people...I am finally able to post on (with the help of Sean) apparently I didn't finalize my registration, so I couldn't post..anyway, I have some questions. The wife and I just purchased a home in Columbia, SC. The builders sodded the front yard, but the sides strips and the backyard is 98% sand and 2% rock and left over wood remnants :( . My question what would be the easiest route to take in order to get the unsodded areas full of the green stuff? I will have more pics coming soon, as the picture posted here was taken within the first couple of days of taking the keys. Also any suggestions on fertilization, aeration etc would be appreciated. I have absorbed alot of info since browing this site and the forums...//JT

  2. jaytee

    jaytee LawnSite Member
    Messages: 26

  3. dvmcmrhp52

    dvmcmrhp52 LawnSite Platinum Member
    from Pa.
    Messages: 4,205

    If the rest of the unsodded area is truly that sandy then you need to get some top soil put down.Then it is either seeding or sodding the area.Sodding is much more expensive but obviously gives quicker results.Seeding a new lawn will take about two years to get what you could consider turf established.As for the existing lawn just go with scotts fertilizer,it is pretty good for homeowner use.
  4. LawnJohn

    LawnJohn LawnSite Member
    from Atlanta
    Messages: 147

    Jaytee - I recommend clearing the rocks and wood remenants first. Typicaly fescue is planted in the back and side of most homes.. It's cheaper and germinates rapidly if you provide the right conditions (i.e. good soil contact, starter fert and persistent watering). You notice results in 2-3 weeks (with fescue).

    The disadvantage of fescue is it performs poorly if the seeded area gets a lot of sun.. Don't pay attention to the bags of seeds that mention "Does great in full sun.." Trust me on this one. I'll shed more detail on that if you want.

    You're other option would be Sod. More expensive, but the results are instant. Here in the ATL, one palet covers ~500+/- sqft and costs $110 to $120 delivered.

    Now here's my personal recommendation. :) Since your home is new, I'd observe the water drainage BEFORE doing anything.. I too bought a new home recently. The one thing I've noticed from ALL but one builder in ATL and the metro area is poor grading and water pooling. Seeding would be useless if you have those problems and you sod would be dead quicker than the new smell in your home. :)

    Another thing...if you plan to plant ornamentals, get ready to dig up rocks. Rock are covered during the grading process.

    I have tons of pics if you need examples or poor grading and I may post before and after pics of my yard later today along with a dissertation on grading.....

    .....feel free to email me anytime.

  5. GeorgiaGrassMan

    GeorgiaGrassMan LawnSite Member
    Messages: 147

    Having lived in Columbia for half of my 40 years, I can give you a pointer or two. Don't even consider wasting money on Fescue seed for Columbia. It's too hot there (yes - much hotter than Atlanta) and Fescue won't like the sand anyway. Centipede grows like mad in sandy South Carolina soil. I'd sprig the back, fertilize it, water it and you will be amazed at how fast it will establish itself - one season is typical. You need to be very careful how you fertilize Centipede. It has a very low nitrogen requirement as compared to almost anything else. I have even seen recommendations to only fertilize it once every two years. Too much nitrogen will actually harm it. Watering in sandy soil is also a little different than with other types of soil. I'm not really trying to give you specific advise because I have been away from Centipede for a few years and I'm not really up to date on it. What you really need to know is that about 80% of what you read on this site is geared towards cool season grasses like Fescue and Kentucky Blue Grass. The care of Centipede is so entirely different from those types of grass that there is a real danger of you picking up bad info here. Your best bet is your local cooperative extension office. Clemson University runs these programs all over the state and they are very helpful people. Most of the big nurseries (not Home Depot or Lowes) in Columbia are also very good sources of information. I hope this helps and good luck. My parents live in Blythewood by the way and my mother is into roses in a big way. Gardening of all kinds is really big in SC.
  6. jaytee

    jaytee LawnSite Member
    Messages: 26

    LawnJohn and GeorgiaGrassMan..thanks a lot for the yall do not know how much I appreciate guys like you that help newbies like me..i will check out clemson for info on that...once again..thanks..//JT this site friggin rules................................................................................................................................................................

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