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Site Preparation For Planting Kentucky Bluegrass Seed

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Kentucky BluegrassThe optimum dates to plant Kentucky Bluegrass Seed ( a cool season grass) is between Sept. 15 through Nov. 1 when soil temperatures are 50-65 degrees. Fall planting allows the seedlings to start establishing for the onset of winter.

Fall planting of Kentucky Bluegrass seed also allows the bluegrass to be in place for the earliest spring growth. Bluegrass seeds require the soil temperature to be at least warm enough for germination and root development for winter survival. Bluegrass can also be seeded in late winter and early spring.

Kentucky bluegrass seed can be planted as a single variety or as a blend of improved KBG  seed. Blending several bluegrass varieties allows a lawn to have genetic diversity to overcome the particular problems of a given area. In other words by planting a KBG seed blend then your bluegrass turf will have diverse genetic traits that can overcome problems such as disease and pests. These blended bluegrass seed varieties, as well as single cultivars, can also be added to mixtures of fine fescue and ryegrass which used for many bluegrass lawns.

Preparing Your Site To Plant A Bluegrass Lawn or Turf

Step 1 - Make sure that Kentucky Bluegrass is adapted for the location, weather and soil type that you have. Also make sure before you plant that it is the type of grass you want, and research if you want a pure stand or a mixture. See our www.lawngrasses.com web site for help in determining and selecting the best grass for your particular lawn.

Step 2- Measure and lay out your site - record the square feet lawn area that you have. Different lawn grasses handle the diverse aspects of your site in unique ways. What may be a suitable site for some grass types is not suitable for others. Allow for other types of shrubs and ground covers for use in the areas that are not suitable for grass to properly grow.

Step 3- Obtain soil samples and have a qualified laboratory test your soil for nutrients and deficiencies. Then you will be able to apply fertilizer correctly and make other soil adjustments as needed. You can apply the adjustments before tilling so as to incorporate them uniformly. Fertilizers are best applied after tilling but before dragging / raking the soil areas level. You can also apply the fertilizers immediately after planting to Bluegrass lawn areas you have seeded. Do not over-fertilize if planting in the fall or as nitrogen can make your grass more winter kill susceptible.

Step 4- You next step is to prepare your site for your seed. We are going to assume that you will be "killing" off your existing grass and/or weeds. If you need to overseed see the overseeding lawns section on 1-2-3 Easyseed.

Step 5- There are two methods you can use to "kill" off your current lawn. One method is to spray the lawn with a total kill herbicide product such as "Roundup" (Brand name of a glyphosphate produced by Monsanto) before you roto-till. This ensures that the existing grasses and weeds will not stay around to compete with your newly seeded lawn plants. The second method is to just tiller (roto-till) the existing weeds and grasses without killing the plants with chemicals. Be sure and wait the proper length of time required by the particular chemical you are using before planting seeds. Read the label to determine this time. Planting to early could result in your seedlings being injured or killed by residue chemicals.

Step 6- Most likely you will need to tiller the lawn at least two times so as to incorporate the soil and old plant material uniformly. This is especially true if you do not use a chemical to kill existing plants. A good method is to till the lawn and then wait a week before tilling a second time. This results in more "kill" of current plants in your lawn area.

Drag The SoilStep 7-  After tilling the lawn ... you need to drag and level the surface to provide for a clean, smooth and level surface to plant within. Properly leveling your lawn now will help to avoid the lawn being scalped by your mower. You can use a rake to do this step or for bigger areas some sort of heavy drag like device drug behind a tractor or riding lawn mower can achieve similar results. Remove any clumps of weeds or grass left, and break up clods of dirt to create a fine seedbed in the top 3 inches of soil.

Step 8 - READY TO SEED
Now that your lawn surface is ready to seed... continue on to our 1-2-3 EasySeed steps for the HOW-TO's  on seeding your lawn. Or visit www.sodding.com for sodded lawns.

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Preparation Summary For Planting Kentucky Bluegrass

The preparation for planting grass seed starts with a soil test, removal of all obstacles, weeds or existing grasses with the appropriate chemical or method. Fully cultivating the site along with grading for drainage. Adding the recommended soil amendments, as determined by a soil test, as necessary and working these into the soil. Next, rake and smooth the soil as much as possible.

The ground should be level without small hills or depressions left on the surface. Pre-packing the soil before seeding will take care of this problem. This assures an even lawn-mowing surface. Keeping your seedbed moist through the germination period, and during the seedling stage until the roots are well established. Bluegrass can best handle summers if watered regularly and deeply.

The seeding of Bluegrass lawns can be accomplished through seeding with a broadcast seed spreader or drop seed spreader. Following the spreader instructions will ensure even and complete coverage. Seeders that broadcast and pack at the same time are used for larger areas when planting bare soils such as in new lawns. Many commercial grassing contractors use slit seeders or commercial types of equipment. Another method to plant grass seed is by hydroseeding.

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