1. Ask the Expert TODAY!
    Learn how to do more with less when it comes to your fertilization services. Gather your top questions about fertilization and nutrient management and join the live Ask the Expert event hosted by Koch Turf & Ornamental TODAY at 12-2 p.m. ET in the Fertilizer Application forum .

    Dismiss Notice

Seeding Time

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by iowa, May 22, 2006.

  1. iowa

    iowa LawnSite Senior Member
    from NW IA
    Messages: 305

    This is my first time seeding a lawn with a tractor and drill seeder. This area is in the country, and all they need done is the ground tilled up and seeded with a drill seeder. It's a half acre, how long should it take me? I'm familiar with these tractors, just never seeded a lawn before.
  2. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    I am sorry but for most types of turf it is way too late in the spring to be seeding... Summer is right around the corner and it takes seed 30-to-60 days (but really 60 days) to grow into what I would consider fully matured, adult grass. If it isn't at least halfway there by the time July and 104+ temps hit, the grass will not survive, that's if it even germinates this late in the spring, at least here in virginia the worst of the HIGH growth rate of spring is over, and once it starts to slow down, it keeps slowing down into July.

    You could, in a pinch, use double the amount of seed you'd normally use and then you have to WATER the heck out of it (2+ hours / day if no rain) and use a TON of 10-10-10 as well and even then it is very questionable and a big expense, likely a waste.

    I've had customers who thought that, because I'm a green thumb kind of guy, that the above would not happen and they insisted that I seed around late May anyway. I did it once because the customer insisted and I wanted to see for myself, and I'll never do it again.

    Just my .002
  3. freddyc

    freddyc LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 578


    Here in Ma, it's still 40 at night and only crawling into the 60's during the day. At this rate, I think seeding here is still OK....its late by the calendar, but by the ground temp its still fairly cold. Its probably really a regional thing this year.

    We had a load of rain in the last couple weeks and only now is it starting to dry out a little.
  4. TMT

    TMT LawnSite Member
    Messages: 15

    Central Ohio: I will be overseeding with a slit seeder tomorrow. Lesco Eagle blend. As long as there is moisture in the ground, the seed will grow.
  5. topsites

    topsites LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 21,653

    Ok if you've done this before then fine by me, but I'm in virginia and I speak from experience when I say seed needs 60 full days to grow before July because the 104+ temps will kill anything that isn't fully up by then.

    Now if you're in a part of the world where things are not like that, hey sorry I tried to talk you out of it heh.
  6. LindblomRJ

    LindblomRJ LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,570

    In Central SD the day time temperatures are mid to upper 80s. There is also a lack of rain as well. I think we are in for another dry year. At least the Black Hills had a good spring storm. Most of the moisture soaked in.
  7. Turboguy

    Turboguy LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,972

    My two cents worth on the subject is that it is not too late to seed. That goes for Iowa or Virgiania. For the past 16 years I have worked with people planting grass all over the world and I am talking about working with 5000 people. Last week for example I was planting grass in Baku Azerbaijan which is between Russia and Iran. Of course this week I am back planting grass in PA. Our season just started and we seed all summer without a break for the temps.

    I don't use a slit seeder but I respect slit seeders as a good way of planting grass.
  8. carcrz

    carcrz LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,085

    While I am not traveling all over the world to plant grass, I too think you will be fine planting as long as there is plenty of water used.
  9. muddstopper

    muddstopper LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,341

    I plant year round, I have to because seeding is all I do. The best stand of grass I ever had was planted on the 4th of July. This is with cool season grasses. There are a few things to take into consideration. One, the seed wont germinate and grow without adequate water. Two, large amounts of fertilizers wont help the seed germinate. Three, ground temps are more important than air temps. Adequate irrigation will help keep the soil cool, but will also cause high humitity levels near the ground. High amounts of fertilizer will compete with the emerging plants for available moisture. High nitrogen, coupled with the high humitity will contribute to fungus and disease. Incorporating the fertilizer into the soil before planting helps prevent loss of fertilizer due to leaching and violitation. Using heavier rates of mulch, whether hydromulch or straw, will help keep the soil cool and also prevent evaporation which contributes to the humitity. One other thing to consider, in best conditions, all the seed wont germinate at the same time. for this reason, if you plant the first of july, there is usually still some seed left that hasnt germinated by late August. Since most seed recommendations are for a lot more seed than is really necessary, chances are your grass will take off and fill in as soon as the temps and weather conditions become more favoritable. Assuming of course you didnt burn the seed up with excess fertilizers or let the soil become baked and hard form lack of moisture.

Share This Page