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Old 04-09-2012, 01:22 PM   #1
Zig
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Mowing after spot seeding


Hello all. I re-seeded some bare spots in my lawn 6 days ago. The seed was 95% Tall Fescue, 5% Rye. Been watering twice a day. It appears some of the seedlings are poking up a bit by now, I would assume that is the Rye.

Since this is just a spot re-seeding, my existing grass is needing a mow. It's been almost one week since the last mowing, and I have been watering the whole front lawn to keep the newly seeded areas moist.

I have a self-propelled lawn boy. I have the option to side discharge, bag, or mulch. There is no way I can wait another 2 weeks to mow. I am planning to mow this evening on the tallest setting (3.5").

What do you all think? Safe to mow? Side discharge, bag, or mulch? I can try to avoid the bigger bare areas, but most of them are small and will be tough to avoid.

Thanks in advance.

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Old 04-09-2012, 01:45 PM   #2
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Mowing after spot seeding


When I've reseeded I can mow after a week usually just because the seedlings have started taking root, but set the mow height as high as possible for at least month and side discharge. If you really want to go gangbusters when reseeding mix whatever seed you want in the end product with annual rye in a 50/50 mix. If the area you are reseeding will take a pound of seed lay down two pounds of the 50/50 mix. Then lay down a good starter fertilizer (I use Scotts) like it is snow. Skip the recommended spreader settings this stuff is very gentle with new seed, but it will make the seed grow like it's on steroids. In a week I have green lawn, not a few sprouts starting to pop, and the seed I want to have stick around is protected by the annual rye that has grown up first. After the seed is spread and the fertilizer is laid, then and only then lightly drag a wire spring leaf rake across the area in one direction only and water every day for an hour. Then just get out of the way cause the grass is going to attack.

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Old 04-09-2012, 01:56 PM   #3
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Mowing after spot seeding


Thanks Grandpa Bud. I used a golf course starter fertilizer, but didn't sprinkle it on like snow as you have recommended. Hoping I at least see SOME results in the next few days. I will go ahead and mow this evening.
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:08 PM   #4
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Mowing after spot seeding


I'm wanting to cover some bare areas too. Is the timing the same as overseeding/new lawns ( in the fall or spring ) or can this be done successfully any time of the year since the areas are generally smaller??
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:18 PM   #5
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Mowing after spot seeding


From my research, if you are planting fescue, fall is the best time to do any kind of seeding. Spring is the next best, while winter/summer isn't advised.

If I don't get desired results from this spot seeding, I think I'll just verticut and overseed this fall. Figured I would try the easy way out first. I raked the bare spots to expose soil, applied fescue seed by hand at approx 10 lbs per 1000 sq ft. followed that with a sprinkle of golf course starter fertilizer. then covered the treated areas with peat moss.
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:24 PM   #6
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Mowing after spot seeding


Annual rye sprouts almost the moment it hits the ground. It will be with you for exactly one season. No responsible turf manager would ever include it in a turf grass blend. You will have to seed every year with the stuff. It is aggressive and water and fertilizer hogging. During its reign during one season, it will squeeze out more permanent and nicer and kinder turfgrasses.

Hybrid perrennial rye takes 5-10 days and things like fescue, bluegrass, take 14-21 days or longer to germinate.

If I were managing your turfgrass, I would mow around the patches even if it looks goofy. And remember, you have to keep those slow germinating seeds moist.

Last edited by user1007; 04-09-2012 at 02:30 PM.
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:32 PM   #7
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Mowing after spot seeding


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Originally Posted by Grampa Bud View Post
When I've reseeded I can mow after a week usually just because the seedlings have started taking root, but set the mow height as high as possible for at least month and side discharge. If you really want to go gangbusters when reseeding mix whatever seed you want in the end product with annual rye in a 50/50 mix. If the area you are reseeding will take a pound of seed lay down two pounds of the 50/50 mix. Then lay down a good starter fertilizer (I use Scotts) like it is snow. Skip the recommended spreader settings this stuff is very gentle with new seed, but it will make the seed grow like it's on steroids. In a week I have green lawn, not a few sprouts starting to pop, and the seed I want to have stick around is protected by the annual rye that has grown up first. After the seed is spread and the fertilizer is laid, then and only then lightly drag a wire spring leaf rake across the area in one direction only and water every day for an hour. Then just get out of the way cause the grass is going to attack.
What absolute nonsense and horrible advice. Cheapest seed, and cheapest approach to turf management!!!!!:furious :
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:37 PM   #8
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Mowing after spot seeding


Thanks @sdsester. The 5% Rye in my seed was the perennial variety. I suspect those are the sprouts I'm currently seeing as it's been 6 days. I will do my best to mow around the seeded spots!
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Old 04-09-2012, 02:50 PM   #9
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Mowing after spot seeding


sdsester: Before you say Hogwash, Poppycock, Blasphemy and all your other epiphets try it for yourself. You say you're from the Chicago area, well so am I and I didn't believe it either until I saw it for myself some 40 years ago. Using different seed for different purposes is fine, but if the lawn needs to get going now as opposed to the end of the season -this works.
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Old 04-09-2012, 03:00 PM   #10
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Mowing after spot seeding


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sdsester: Before you say Hogwash, Poppycock, Blasphemy and all your other epiphets try it for yourself. You say you're from the Chicago area, well so am I and I didn't believe it either until I saw it for myself some 40 years ago. Using different seed for different purposes is fine, but if the lawn needs to get going now as opposed to the end of the season -this works.
So you know, I was I well paid turfgrass manager and consultant for parks, real estate developments and golf courses in California and Florida before moving back to the Midwest. I live in Chicago by choice now but am not from here. Hate the game of golf but love nice turf. I had residential clients too.

I am not saying you are completely wrong but annual rye is a one season grass seed. It requires annual prep and planting to even approach looking like managed turf. And it is coarse and feels terrible when you walk on it. It is especially demanding of water and higher than normal nitrogen fertilizer.

It is never specified but by cheap contractors trying to turn cheap houses. It is in fact packaged and sold as a cheap contractor mix. No responsible turf manager, landscape designer/architect or landscape contractor would include much in a seed mix if the goal was a lasting lawn. You never find it in sod and only seldom in hydroseeding mixes.

Last edited by user1007; 04-09-2012 at 03:05 PM.
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Old 04-09-2012, 03:38 PM   #11
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Mowing after spot seeding


I never said anything about the rye being permanent. It IS an annual seed. It WILL die off after one season. I understand this. This guy is simply trying to reseed a few barer (sp?) spots in his lawn and doesn't have the time to wait to mow or the big dineros to have a professional lawn laid down over several years. You want FAST coverage -this will do it- , but the lawn you really want will fill in later in the season and next year and for us little guys we can mow in a week and a half and not tear up the North Forty.

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