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Old 04-21-2013, 12:33 AM   #1
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Best grass for SANDY soil?


When the house I am in was built, the backfill they used was HORRIBLE. The entire area around my home, and the front yard where the septic field lays is EXTREMELY sandy.

What is the best seed to put down to encourage some growth and green grass in these areas for if not all, most of the growing season?

The total area I am talking about is about 1 acre, so please, no "add organic materiel" statements - I can't afford it. LOL

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Old 04-21-2013, 07:45 AM   #2
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Best grass for SANDY soil?


Your main challenge with sandy soil and turf is that it drains fast and water and nutrients can leach through it faster than regular soils. Some places, like outdoor entertainment venues with lawn seating, plant in sandy soils on purposes because they can water in the morning and still have people sitting on it in the evening. It will cost you more in water and fertilizer to plant a lawn in sand though.

Anyhow, the seed mix is not going to make a lot of difference and with any other soil you should pick it for the shade or sun conditions you have. Hybrids with some drought tolerance would probably be a good idea. Turf mixes are typically hybrid perennial (not annual) ryes, fescues and bluegrasses. Remember the germination periods are different and you need to plan on keeping all the seeeds moist until the germinate---about a month.

Now is a good time to buy seed because it is sold in bulk at nurseries, real hardware stores, feed and seed stores, etc. It is nice and fresh and you can make your own blend.

Were you planning to prep and seed this lawn or is this an overseeding project? If starting from scratch, hydroseeding is a great option for establishing turf quickly.

Do think about whether you want so much turf and whether some adaptable ground covers might not serve you better in the long run.

And are you sure you cannot add some organic ammendments? It might not be so expensive as you think buying by the yard and having a truckload delivered. Buying it in sacks gets pricey.

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Old 04-22-2013, 10:50 PM   #3
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Best grass for SANDY soil?


I'm not starting from scratch. I just plan to overseed.
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Old 04-23-2013, 01:27 AM   #4
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Best grass for SANDY soil?


Mow the lawn you have shorter than usual just this once. Then use a landscape rake, power rake or have the lawn dethatched to scarify the soil surface.

Get your soil test done and add the mineral you need to at least balance Ph with lime or gypsum, etc. The lab will tell you how much to use. It is not expensive.

Apply a complete lawn fertilizer.

Then buy the seed mix in bulk leaning toward perennial rye if you have sun as it will germinate faster. Distribute the seed evenly and top dress with peat moss, mulch, straw (never hay) etc.

Keep the seed moist until all that is going to has germinated. You should see perennial rye in 7-10 days and fescues and bluegrasses in 14-28 days. Once sprouted begin adjusting your watering schedule to water as infrequently as the sand will let you but longer to encourage deep roots.

Mow at a tall height. Establish a regular feeding and lawn chemical regimen realizing you may have to enhance it for sandy soil that leaches nutrients quickly.

It still might be worth a call to a hydromulch company but I have never heard of it used in an overseeding situation. Could work I guess.
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Old 04-24-2013, 12:20 AM   #5
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Best grass for SANDY soil?


After the soil test, I recommend plug aeration, then spreading 1/4" - 1/2" of organic compost or peat moss over the lawn. The compost will fall into the holes and help you build up organic matter in the sandy soil. Organic matter helps water retention. Compost is basically a slow-release fertilizer. Peat moss gives the water retention benefits, but is devoid of nutrients. Then, overseed. some of the seed will fall into the aeration holes...this is a good thing. Finally, put down a good starter fertilizer.
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Old 04-24-2013, 04:20 AM   #6
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Best grass for SANDY soil?


Guys, let me say again - I AM NOT SPREADING ORGANIC anything over 1 acre. Do you realize how much materiel I would need? Cmon, let's be realistic, it's not a 70x100 city lot we are talking about.

What I am going to do is this - drag my thatcher around and loosen the sand/soil up. Put down 200#lbs of a fescue mix. Water daily for 3-4 weeks, and see what happens.

I'm not expecting miracles, I'm just looking for some help.

I am NOT using any rye or bluegrass...both of those HATE sandy soils.
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Old 04-26-2013, 09:43 AM   #7
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Best grass for SANDY soil?


I have extremely sandy/clay soil around my yard. I have had luck with tall fescue grass seed (Turf Type). Grows well and is what I cal idiot proof. All I did was throw it down on top, set my sprinkler system to water 6 times a day, and it's doing fine. Took about 1-2 weeks and it started filling in nicely.
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Old 04-26-2013, 10:37 AM   #8
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Best grass for SANDY soil?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bpolijr View Post
Guys, let me say again - I AM NOT SPREADING ORGANIC anything over 1 acre. Do you realize how much materiel I would need? Cmon, let's be realistic, it's not a 70x100 city lot we are talking about.

What I am going to do is this - drag my thatcher around and loosen the sand/soil up. Put down 200#lbs of a fescue mix. Water daily for 3-4 weeks, and see what happens.

I'm not expecting miracles, I'm just looking for some help.

I am NOT using any rye or bluegrass...both of those HATE sandy soils.

Alright, I guess we can see who needs an attitude adjustment. I simply made a statement about what I would do. I am not forcing you to do a single thing.


Last edited by Seattle2k; 04-26-2013 at 10:49 AM.
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