New to overseeding

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by crgstvrs, Feb 6, 2013.

  1. crgstvrs

    crgstvrs LawnSite Member
    Messages: 66

    I was able to buy some seed for overseed my lawn in Kingsport, tn. It is a tall fescue seed consisting of Turnberry tall fescue, Rebel IV tall fescue, and Renovate tall fescue. It shows 0.07 other crop seed and 0 noxious weed seed. Also on label shows a 95% germination rate. I paid 34.00 for each 25 lb. bag just wanting reassurance that i didn't get took. I plan to aerate 3x, overseed at 5 lbs. per 1000sqft, and top dress. any thoughts or help would be appreciated.
  2. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,807

    It should work out fine.
    Not to be negative...however...if you read about Turnberry between the lines at the grower's website, it says something like "a fine texture, medium green turf-type tall fescue..." To me that means "light green"--and run of the mill quality. "Mixes well" probably indicates that it needs improved quality types to produce top-quality turf. What is the percent Turnberry in the blend?

    All the other types are listed as " dark green", "disease resistant" "elite", "heat tolerant", "drought tolerant", "spreading type", "high in endophytes for insect resistance" or "very high-quality". They all have product sheets--Turnberry has none. Turnberry may be an older type, as it is mentioned in 2004.

    Is it fresh seed? At what date was the seed last tested? 6 months is OK--over a year--not so much.

    The usual seeding rate is 6 to 10 pounds per thousand sqft. September is a better time to overseed. Why are you overseeding? Improve color? Density? Bare spots and drought injury? Shade? Disease? Insect damage? Is the site irrigated?
    Give or take...the best time to seed in spring is about the time of the first mowing.

    If your lawn has mostly elite types already, then you don't want to take a chance of getting patches of a lighter green cultivar.
    Was it originally sod, (if so, it is probably a dark green type).
  3. agrostis

    agrostis LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,545

    $34 for a 25 Lb. bag is a good price, if that seed is fresh (not more than a year old) you got a good deal. Your weather isn't much different than mine, ,

    so planting in the spring doesn't give the plant's root's time to develop before the heat of summer, so expect some failure. Sept. 1 is the best time to plant. Aerating in the spring can be iffy because the soil and plant's aren't warm enough to recover quickly, just be aware of that. If you already have 50% grass growing, then you only need to seed at 3 Lb's per 1000 sq. ft. The number of plant's per sq. foot is important. Sunlight and air movement make the biggest difference in good growing condition's, do everything you can to improve that.

    For your own information, you are in growing zone 7a, here's something to look at. Click on Tenn. Good luck.
  4. crgstvrs

    crgstvrs LawnSite Member
    Messages: 66

    Entire lawn was previously seeded with Mojave ii, Starfire, and Magellan tall fescues. I am starting to worry about the Turnberry being alot lighter than other grass. Also I didn't say in original post but this seed is Lesco Transition Blend, and was tested on 6/2012 with a sell by date of 9/2013. Thank you for the posts i appreciate any wisdom that i can gain from peoples experience. again thank you.the percenages are Rebel IV 36.05, Renovate 35.76, and Turnberry 27.11.
    Last edited: Feb 7, 2013
  5. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,807

    I think you are good. The high percentage of Rebel IV is a good sign--top quality cultivar. Lesco brand is a good sign--they would not risk their reputation with a blend that had a yellowish color component. Remember the seed may lose a few (say 2 percent for example), percent germination per month--especially if stored under poor conditions,,,such as hot and humid. Ask if it was simply stored locally in their warehouse--or--at the seed producer's refrigerated, humidity controlled-warehouse in Oregon.

    Slit seeder is better than an aeration machine. For less than optimum conditions...only half the seed may survive, use more seed...such as 10 pounds per thousand...particularly if you have dead spots or extremely thin areas. Perhaps go over such areas two or three times. Mow short before beginning so that the new seed can receive plenty of sunlight, and therefore not be crowded out by old grass.

    I am not sure if starter fertilizer is a good idea or not. It stimulates new seed--but also stimulates the old grass.

    Most important!!! Plan to irrigate every day for 30 days.

    Tell us how it works out in 8 weeks...OK?

    I am sure we will have many more similar questions and situations coming up soon. The dryness and heat was brutal during the summer of 2012.

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