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Watering new seeded lawn opinions?

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by WETSCAPE, Jun 2, 2009.


    WETSCAPE LawnSite Member
    Messages: 168

    Hi guys have a question. Everyone I ask has a different approach! I recently seeded and hayed a lawn. The customer had a sprinkler system and the guy set it up to run twice a day for once in the early am around 4:00am and then to go back on about 12:30 in the afternoon. I noticed he has it for set for 20mins each run time. It is in full sun. I realize you want to keep the seed moist NOT soaked. Is this set up correct or should it be only once at 4:00 am?
    Curious to get others takes.
  2. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 15,777

    It would be best to monitor the moisture...without seeing the site it would be difficult to make a recommendation.
  3. Kingram52

    Kingram52 LawnSite Member
    from Arizona
    Messages: 105

    It has a better chance of germinating if you water it 4 times a day at 5min each time.

    WETSCAPE LawnSite Member
    Messages: 168

    This is how the sprinkler co set up the guys system to run. What I worry about the most is short frequent watering could lead to fungus/blight. A problem I dealt with at the same property last year. I suggested one 15min run time early around 7:00am or so and a 10min run at 5:00pm.
  5. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    For grass 4 AM is good. For seed - you want to moisten it when the sun is drying it. I like 10 AM, 2:30 PM, and 5:30 PM in full sun.
    But we have grown good grass, in shade, on good soil - with just soaking it in the morning.
  6. AI Inc

    AI Inc LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 26,629

    What you suggested is the correct way.
  7. ron mexico75

    ron mexico75 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,001

    I concur with this statement. The short frequent waterings are fine until the seed gets established. That's exactly what you want to do. Keep the seed and new seedlings damp not drown them. My guess would be maybe 2 to 3 weeks.

    You are right in saying you should be worried about fungus with frequent waterings. However, that is once the turf is established and not when it's germinating. Once established then you want to switch over to long deep infrequent watering. That helps the grass grow a deep root system. Short everyday watering makes turf have a shallow root system near the top because the grass "expects" water everyday and has no reason for the roots to go down deep to get the water. Does that make sense?
  8. Mikey Palmice

    Mikey Palmice LawnSite Member
    Messages: 47

    that makes a lot of sense actually. great info.

    I was wondering, I rolled my soil after the seed and fertilizer were put down. I worked em into the top soil with a rake, wet it and rolled it. Should I water longer since the soil is tighter now?

    my area might get thunderstorms tonight or tomorrow. Am I screwed now?

    I also put a thin layer of straw over the entire area. I put enough for a good covering, you can see some soil in spots, but very small areas.

    I was going to water around 8am, noon, and I guess around 6pm for short amounts of time.

    thanks for the help

    thanks for the help.
  9. ron mexico75

    ron mexico75 LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,001

    I think you're fine. As long as you are not creating a mud pit that you sink into when you walk on it then you're fine. Just make sure more then the surface of the dirt is wet and some of it is going beneath the top visible layer.
  10. Mikey Palmice

    Mikey Palmice LawnSite Member
    Messages: 47

    I have a really dumb question. When you put down seed, and say you get a 75 percent germination rate. At what points do you get new grass other than from the original seeds. I guess this is called spread? Does that only happen after you mulch your clippings in the lawn mower?


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