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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
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
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
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
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.
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.
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
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.
a beautiful tomorrow!®