Last Call for Lawn Seeding! "Dr. Z's" Tip of the Week

There is a still a small window of opportunity to do some grass seeding.  Here is how to do it.
When attempting to sow grass seed from mid October on, the germination rates of the grasses used in our area must be taken into account.  The rates for the three major grasses we use, under ideal conditions, are as follows:
Ryegrasses ------- about 7 to 10 days.
Fescues ----------- about 2 weeks.
Bluegrasses ------ about 3 to 4 weeks.
As can be seen, as long as the weather holds up, there should be enough time for ryegrass to germinate and get established.  Straight ryegrass seed or a mixture containing a lot of ryegrass in it can be used.  It is important to use a starter fertilizer at this juncture as it will help that seedling get established.
Bluegrass and fescue seed can be over seeded into the established ryegrass next spring in order to thicken up the lawn.
Rye grass is usually considered a "nurse grass".  That is why it is always used in seed mixes.  Ryegrass germinates quickly and holds the other seeds in place until they germinate to fill in and make the lawn lush.  Each ryegrass seed produces one plant which never really "spreads".  Bluegrasses and fescues do spread by making other plants through the rhizomes they produce.  Rhizomes are modified underground stems which send out roots and shoots from their nodes, thus creating a new plant from the mother plant.
So a lawn produced now may not look thick and lush, but it will hold the soil in place and be green.
Remember we told you not to do any heavy raking in the spring ?  Now is the time! While you are at it, be sure to rake out your garden beds and carefully remove and destroy any diseased plants.  Get rid of any weed seeds!
Please give me a call or stop in to see me if you have more questions!