What grass seed for a runway

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by flykelley, Mar 7, 2008.

  1. flykelley

    flykelley LawnSite Member
    Messages: 186

    Hi Guys
    I am helping a friend build a grass runway in Northern Lower Michigan. The soil is sandy where he lives. The runway will be 1100 ft long and 25 ft wide. This will be a private runway for him to fly his home built plane from, so it will not see a ton of use. So where is the best and cheapest place to buy grass seed? Also he will have some water to keep it wet, he has a 1000 gallon tank on a trailer. Any ideas or suggestions would be great. Also not sure if this is the right forum for this thread, if not would a mod please move it.

    Thanks Mike
  2. CrownLawnSvc

    CrownLawnSvc LawnSite Member
    Messages: 51

    I would think a Turf Type tall fescue would work out really well for that situation. Ask a local golf course superintendent where he gets his seed. I would not get "cheap" seed. There will be a higher chance of getting a forage fescue contamination.
  3. flykelley

    flykelley LawnSite Member
    Messages: 186

    Hi Crown Lawn
    When I talk about price I was talking about buying it at wholesale or a discount price. I have never had good luck with cheap seed. Looking for a wholesaler or a supplier that has a decent price.

    Thanks Mike
  4. PSUturf

    PSUturf LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 663

    See if there is a Lesco / John Deere Landscapes nearby for seed. They should have a variety of blends to choose from. I don't know how many square feet you are talking about but a 1000 gallon tank won't go far toward watering a sandy seedbed. You will probably be able to water 10-15000 square feet with each tank. Hope for frequent rainfall.
  5. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    How much "native" or "naturalized" grass is on site now? I am on the other side of the lake but here, - our 'wild grass' is a version of KBG. We call it Junegrass and it is better than anything you can grow from commercial seed.
    (It is of the genus, 'poa' and brought in from Europe they say.)

    Just a thought. :) Here for the runway - all we'd have to do is switch from hay mower to lawn mower.
  6. flykelley

    flykelley LawnSite Member
    Messages: 186

    Hi smallaxe
    No grass on the runway itself, some weeds and junk grass along side. My friend has being using a dozer to clear the runway of some small trees and level it off.

    Regards Mike
  7. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Maybe the thing to do is a bunch of KBG and perennial ryegrasses. Since there is not likely water you will want to protect the seed from drying out, maybe even straw.
    Use mixture with a good percentage of annual ryegrass, in that, it may establish quickly enough to survive an early dry summer.
  8. big_country

    big_country LawnSite Member
    Messages: 118

    I would say Kentucky 31 fescue with a little perennial rye for a quick stand and cheapest that is for a runway, its not like want a fairway. Go to any farm supply or co-op if you have those in your area, they tend to be the cheapest on KY31 seed.
  9. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,497

    Absolutely...do NOT plant turf type tall fescue. besides cost factor being much higher, this is NOT the most durable blend for your use. Ky 31 is by far your best bet. It is hardy, drought and disease tolerant, not to mention a TOUGH turf. It is what is used for contractors blens like foe along side roads and highways.
  10. flykelley

    flykelley LawnSite Member
    Messages: 186

    Thanks Guys
    As soon as it gets warm I will be off to TSC to buy some seed.

    Regards Mike

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