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Old 01-11-2011, 09:49 AM   #1
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Grass Seed over Snow???


Anybody recommend broadcasting grass seed over snow. I have heard of this but never tried it.
Seems like a good procedure since the snow is fresh and one could see where and how the seeds are placed.

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Old 01-11-2011, 10:12 AM   #2
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Grass Seed over Snow???


I think you would be wasting your time and money. Grass seed needs 'intimate' contact with the soil to germinate, root, and survive.

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Old 01-11-2011, 10:25 AM   #3
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I think you would be wasting your time and money. Grass seed needs 'intimate' contact with the soil to germinate, root, and survive.
Yes, I realise that, but I live in N.W. Alabama and snow here usually only last a few days.
When the snow melts, the ground will be "rotten" and he seed should penetrate the soil.
I have never tried it but some say they got good results.
The ground is almost bare from clearing small trees and my plan was to mix some rye grass seed with fescue and the rye grass should come up for winter coverage.
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Old 01-11-2011, 10:43 AM   #4
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Grass Seed over Snow???


Ayuh,... Go ahead, 'n try it,...

I'd think you'll be feeding the birds, more than seeding a lawn though...
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Old 01-12-2011, 02:57 PM   #5
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Grass Seed over Snow???


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I'd think you'll be feeding the birds, more than seeding a lawn though...
Got to agree!

Having said that, I have seeded over frost-heaved soil and gotten fairly good results. Consider that the soil is puffed up from the frost so if you sow seed on top of that the seed will work down into the frost cracks when it melts. Works better in the transition zone where the soil freezing is a temporary from a cold spell followed by some warmer weather while still in fall/ early winter. Just remember to always use straw on top.
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Old 01-12-2011, 03:25 PM   #6
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Grass Seed over Snow???


yea, when i read the title of the thread my first thought was "bird food"

That being said, I've often heard that it's good to put seed down right before a snow. The theory is that the snow will protect it from birds, and as the snow starts meltinging into the moist soil below it will help drive the seed into the soil. Never tried it myself, but have heard it from several people over the years
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Old 01-13-2011, 12:06 PM   #7
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Grass Seed over Snow???


Most likely it will end up as bird food, but I suppose it depends on how much snow is there, is more snow expected, is the snow melting quickly...? I'd say give it a shot and see what happens. It's an interesting experiment if nothing else.
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Old 01-14-2011, 10:45 AM   #8
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Grass Seed over Snow???


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Yes, I realise that, but I live in N.W. Alabama and snow here usually only last a few days.
When the snow melts, the ground will be "rotten" and he seed should penetrate the soil.
I have never tried it but some say they got good results.
The ground is almost bare from clearing small trees and my plan was to mix some rye grass seed with fescue and the rye grass should come up for winter coverage.
It's kind of a long shot, but it could work. And if the grass seed is on top of the snow, hungry birds are certainly going to get some of it.

The bottom line is - as you know - that grass seed has to have moisture to germinate, and contact with the soil to grow. If everything came together right, the "grass seed on snow" thing could work.

I'd be more inclined to think that grass seed sown - with a little dirt on top - before it snows, would be ideal.


The bottom line is that grass seed needs a good moist seed bed - for several weeks - to germinate. How you achieve that is up for grabs.
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Old 01-14-2011, 08:28 PM   #9
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Grass Seed over Snow???


the other thing it needs is adequate temps to germinate or it will likely just rot
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Old 01-14-2011, 11:29 PM   #10
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Grass Seed over Snow???


I say do it. Squirrels love it at this time of year.
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Old 01-18-2011, 06:42 AM   #11
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Grass Seed over Snow???


I do winter seeding every year. Frost heave tends to work the seed into the soil, so I understand. I don't know how well that would work in the warmer parts of our country, but it seems to work well in Ohio.
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Old 01-19-2011, 09:48 AM   #12
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Grass Seed over Snow???


Theres a weekend plant/landscape show on am radio here in St.Louis and the host said recently that it is a waste of seed as the temps are to low to germinate and the seed just rots. But it could work in AL. what are your average temps there in winter?
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Old 01-19-2011, 10:09 AM   #13
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Grass Seed over Snow???


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Theres a weekend plant/landscape show on am radio here in St.Louis and the host said recently that it is a waste of seed as the temps are to low to germinate and the seed just rots. But it could work in AL. what are your average temps there in winter?
My main plan was to broadcast rye grass seed. I believe it will come up when temperature is between 40 and 60 for a few days.
From all the replyes I received here and other sites, I decided to wait until just before a predicted snow. I may have missed my chance since we may not get another.
Guess I'll just wait for spring and broadcast lawn seed.
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Old 01-19-2011, 12:33 PM   #14
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Grass Seed over Snow???


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Got to agree!

Having said that, I have seeded over frost-heaved soil and gotten fairly good results. Consider that the soil is puffed up from the frost so if you sow seed on top of that the seed will work down into the frost cracks when it melts. Works better in the transition zone where the soil freezing is a temporary from a cold spell followed by some warmer weather while still in fall/ early winter. Just remember to always use straw on top.
Again with the straw?

OP, be wary of this practice.

Thank you.
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Old 01-19-2011, 01:13 PM   #15
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Grass Seed over Snow???


There is a difference between a bale of hay and a bale of straw. - just wait a month or two and see the difference.

Why the hurry to seed grass as soon as possible? Seed it when the conditions are proper and it will be where you put it in and it will explode with minimal cost and problems. - Get out the mower when it is 3" high (it may be overnight in some places).

I do spread fertilizer in the early spring when there is snow cover, but that takes time to dissolve, be absorbed and work.

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