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Seeding in Hot NC Summer

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by frackadelic, Jun 25, 2010.

  1. frackadelic

    frackadelic LawnSite Member
    Messages: 10

    I recently had some trees removed in the back yard and am in the process of turning the old scraggly natural areas into yard. I have had a bed of leaves there over the past 2 years composting and recently removed the top layer and tilled the rest into the soil, which is already excellent nice dark soil. Normally I would just rake this out and seed with fescue to match the rest of my yard, but I'm worried that since we have been so hot and dry that it will not take well. The reason I would like to get at least something down is because our dog has a dark soil radar and feels compelled to dig immediately upon sight :) Would seeding and watering every morning have any chance of success? It doesn't have to be pretty, just something to have some ground cover instead of letting weeds grow. I will definitely redo in the fall properly.

  2. bigslick7878

    bigslick7878 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 809

    Waste of time unless you can water 5x a day to keep the seed moist. Once won't cut it.

    Sod is your only viable option that has any chance of success in the dead of summer.
  3. Aleman

    Aleman LawnSite Member
    Messages: 204

    Ditto that....
  4. 1999frontier

    1999frontier LawnSite Senior Member
    from NC
    Messages: 562

    I would wait until September and seed then.
  5. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,561

    If you do nothing you will be mowing weeds. When the soil is warm--seed comes up fast--provided it is wet. (crabgrass and weed seeds, too). Perennial rye should be a half-inch high in 72 hours, under ideal, warm moist conditions. (Mine did last week). Perhaps mix it with a high-quality tall fescue. Remember the seeding rate for fescue is around 8 lbs per thousand sqft. Think about trying the new rhizotomas tall fescue--spreads to self repair and stays much thicker.
    Get a battery operated water timer. Operate two sprinklers with 80 foot circles at once. Irrigate about an hour a day. Manually add an additional hour when you get home if temp exceeds 90. Fungus can happen. Weeds WILL happen. The rye is not suited in southern climates--it probably will not last long, although Mountainview seed co claims its "Academy" is ideal for transition zone use. http://www.mtviewseeds.com/varietiesandmixtures.htm

    One additional complication, Tall fescue (unless it is the new rhizomatous type) does not creep, so it is normally mixed with about 10 percent Kentucky bluegrass to give the turf the ability to self-repair after thin spots happen.

    This will not be easy--I hope it works out OK. What are your thoughts Frackadelic?
  6. frackadelic

    frackadelic LawnSite Member
    Messages: 10

    Thanks for the advice. I know chances are slim to none though. My yard is currently 90/10 fescue/bluegrass and typically goes dormant around this time. I don't think rye would stand a chance either. But who knows. It's not a large area, maybe 500sq/ft, it might be worth a try. Sep is ony 2 months away, so not the end of the world.

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