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Old 03-16-2012, 01:35 PM   #1
Cape Cod, MA
 
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Seeding Lawn Question


When seeding a new lawn. Is it better to lay down loam and then seed or lay down loam, seed, and loam on top of the seed?

Thanks!
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Old 03-16-2012, 03:58 PM   #2
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Seeding Lawn Question


You cannot just add loam or soil to what is there. In general and skipping some details...

1. Make any major grade changes or desired adjustments
2. Till the planting area thoroughly.
3. Remove any large clumps of roots and rocks.
4. Till again folding in planting amendments and starter fertilizer
5. Rake the planting area to final grade
6. Broadcast seed
7. Top dress the seed
8. Roll everything with a landscape roller half full of water
9. Keep evenly moist and watered during the day until ALL seed in the mix germinates. 5-7 day for annual rye, 7-10 for perrennial rye, 14-21 or longer for fescues and bluegrasses.

You can replace steps 6-8 by having the lawn hydroseeded. It is not expensive, will establish faster than either sod or hand seeded.

Once you can establish a watering schedule aim to water for longer periods of time (without overwatering) and less frequently to encourage deep root growth. To help prevent insect and fungus infestation, never water later in the day than the lawn can dry by sundown.

Mow blade grasses tall to help control weeds and for maximum health. Treat new lawns with a post-emergent herbicides no earlier than 2 months after planting.

Last edited by user1007; 03-16-2012 at 04:01 PM.
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Old 03-16-2012, 08:02 PM   #3
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Seeding Lawn Question


Sorry for my blunt posting but I was just trying to cut to the chase. My planning is as you described. I did have a question about the fertilizer. I was going to use Scotts starter fertilizer, do you think it might be a safer bet to get the starter with crab grass preventer? And what exactly do you mean by "top dress the seed" ? Do you mean just a light coat of loam over the seed?

Thanks for the reply. At least I was on the right track!
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Old 03-16-2012, 08:34 PM   #4
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Seeding Lawn Question


Quote:
Originally Posted by capecodder View Post
Sorry for my blunt posting but I was just trying to cut to the chase. My planning is as you described. I did have a question about the fertilizer. I was going to use Scotts starter fertilizer, do you think it might be a safer bet to get the starter with crab grass preventer? And what exactly do you mean by "top dress the seed" ? Do you mean just a light coat of loam over the seed?

Thanks for the reply. At least I was on the right track!
You do not want to use a product with any sort of pre-emergent herbicide when seeding a new lawn. Just use a good starter fertilizer. I would be surprised if Scotts sold a starter fertilizer with an herbicide. You can deal with weeds that sneak in with a post-emergent in a couple of months.

Nothing wrong with Scotts products and the program. It is reasonably foolproop if you follow the directions. It is just expensive. You can pick up a bag of private labeled fertilizer for blending in to start a lawn with the same NPK ratio (those three number on the bag or bottle of any fertilizer) at someplace like ACE, KMart, or even OSCO drugs for a fraction of the cost.

You should invest in a handheld broadcast spreader.

Do see what hydroseeding costs where you are. Fertilizer, seed and mulch get mixed into a slurry and sprayed on. All hardens as a crust. It is great. You still have to prep properly. Seed is of course relatively cheap and you can and should buy it in bulk since it will be available that way now. But by the time you factor in fertilizer and top dress cost you may find hydroseeding about the same. And your lawn will establish very quickly. There is no way weed seeds can get through the crust to the soil, at least in theory.

Usually if hydroseeding folks are working in your area they will schedule you in in short order. Be patient if you can though especially if you have a small area.


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