Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Lawn Renovation Best Done During September

Many homeowners think about renovating or sowing grass in their lawns during the spring. However, the odds of success are best if grass is sowed during September, according to Tim Schnakenberg, agriculture and rural development specialist, University of Missouri Extension.
The advantage of a September seeding rests in the fact that cool season grasses like fescue and bluegrass grow best in a cooler time of the year with adequate moisture.
"If they are established just prior to the fall growing period, they will have an opportunity to develop a healthy root system going into winter and can get an early start in the spring," said Schnakenberg.
Spring seedings usually have limited cool periods to grow before the season gets warmer and slows growth down.
"The real downside is that the roots are usually not as well developed when hot weather sets in, plus weeds can become competitive at that time," said Schnakenberg.
A common recommendation for southwest Missouri is to mix a blend of a turf-type fescue and Kentucky Bluegrass in a nine to one mix by weight.
"The turf-type fescue will have a more attractive appearance than the standard Kentucky 31 fescue variety and the Kentucky Bluegrass will help fill in thin areas and improve the appearance early in the spring," said Schnakenberg.
Homeowners should also take the time to soil test their lawn by submitting a soil sample to staff at the nearest MU Extension Center.
"Submitting a soil test will insure that you know exactly what the fertility need is for your lawn. This will ensure a healthier stand of grass and point out any serious fertility problems that may exist," said Schnakenberg.
For more information on variety lawn recommendations, seeding practices and care of a new stand of grass, contact the nearest MU Extension Center or visit http://extension.missouri.edu.

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