what grass is this and how should I prep the lawn for overseed

Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by TCP638, Aug 14, 2017.

  1. TCP638

    TCP638 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    IMG_1256.JPG IMG_1257.JPG IMG_1258.JPG IMG_1186.JPG IMG_1187.JPG Hey guys I want to dethatch, core aerate and overseed this year but have never done it on my property and the previous homeowner didn't do anything. Any advice on when and how? I have a dethatch and core aerator. Also any advice on which seed to use? I can get the sun/shade mix from scotts at my local big box. I have a few different types of grass in my yard.... Some looks like wavy dog fur which I hate. Also have zoysia on about 1/4 of the property. I'm not sure if overseeding over zoysia is just throwing money away. But I do need to dethatch and aerate for sure this year. Lots of thatch on the zoysia area and lots of bare spots with compacted soil. So any advice on when and how to overseed would be great! Thanks!
     
  2. KerbDMK

    KerbDMK LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 700

    The “wavy dog fur” is fine fescue. The rest looks like fine fescue, Kentucky bluegrass, and/or perennial ryegrass. Fine fescue over time can overrun an older lawn. It’s good in small amounts but develops a lot of thatch as it overtakes the other grasses. Core aerating is the best way to dethatch that if you want to save it. Dethatching it with a dethatcher tends to rip it out by the roots, but that may be a good way for you to get rid of a lot of it.

    Now is a good time to start this process in most of the northern part of this country.
     
  3. TCP638

    TCP638 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    Yeah I'll probably want to get rid of most of it. During the summer months I was mowing high and the fine fescue would fall and grow and I couldn't mow it.
    So let me see if I got this right. Dethatch in two directions or just one? Lots of thatch in the zoysia. Then aerator and seed (should I bother seeding over the zoysia)? After putting seed down do I spread some top soil or lawn food? Then water twice a day lightly to make sure seeds don't dry out. First mow when? Thank you.
     
  4. KerbDMK

    KerbDMK LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 700

    I would just say to dethatch in alternating directions until you are happy with the results. It may only take one pass, but it could take more.

    I live in the north and don’t have any experience with southern grasses like zoysia, maybe someone else can help with that.

    Fertilizer at time of seeding is good. Topsoil is not really necessary, maybe a little on bare spots if you can’t loosen the soil by dethatching, aerating or cultivating. See this thread: https://www.lawnsite.com/threads/ve...ool-of-small-spots-areas.471606/#post-5670828

    A very thin layer of peat moss (1/8 inch or less - too much can be bad) can be put on top of your seed to help with moisture retention on bare or thin spots, otherwise that's not necessary either.

    Water like you said.

    Since you are overseeding, you should mow closely and regularly to allow the seedlings to get plenty of light. On bare areas, you should be able to mow by the time it’s about 1.5 to 2 inches tall or whenever the grass can reach your mower blades. Mowing helps increase turf density, so the sooner you can mow the better, but don’t use heavy mowers that can tear up the new grass with its tires.
     
  5. TCP638

    TCP638 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    Great I'll probably get started this weekend or so. Now I have a few low spots, can I just put dirt directly over the grass since I'm seeding?

    Hmm the ride mower is all I got. What do you suggest I do?
     
  6. KerbDMK

    KerbDMK LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 700

    Putting dirt directly over could cause a layering effect in your soil that may cause problems with water infiltration in the future. You should till it in or at least core aerate those areas heavily while you add more topsoil.

    If the rider is all you have, use it, but be careful with it, especially while turning.

    Water, water, water. That's the most important part of the whole process.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2017
  7. TCP638

    TCP638 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    Thank you very much Kerb. I will give it a shot. Will try to post some before and after.
     
  8. KerbDMK

    KerbDMK LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 700

    That would be great. I think we all like to see how things turn out. I’m pulling for you! :)
     
  9. TCP638

    TCP638 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    IMG_1258.JPG IMG_1306.JPG So went to my big box store and there are just too many choices! Which one is closest to this photo? Thanks
     
  10. KerbDMK

    KerbDMK LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 700

    I’ve had good results with Scotts Sun and Shade and the Kentucky Bluegrass mix. The Dense Shade mix has tall fescue in it. The rest of your lawn doesn’t have that, so you don’t want to introduce that. It’s different and will not look good with the rest of your lawn.

    Sun and Shade has KBG and Perennial ryegrass in it. It’s a nice dark color and will establish quickly with the perennial ryegrass in it.

    The KBG mix is all bluegrass and has a med dark color. It takes longer to grow in, so be patient with it, but it will blend with any of the grass you have.

    Choose Sun and Shade, or choose KGB mix, don’t use both on different parts of your lawn or you will have noticeable differences.

    It’s very important that you mow short and often when overseeding so that the seedlings can get sunlight or your overseed may fail. That is especially true for the KBG mix.

    Overseed at the rate suggested on the package or use 50% more if you can afford it.
     

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