Water is vital for turf grass germination until the seed germinates. It is very important to maintain constant moisture in the seedbed. Without constant moisture, the germination process stops. If the weather gets hot and/or it's windy, water should be applied more frequently. Try to avoid water puddles or runoffs which can wash out and damage grass seeds. As the grass establishes itself, you can increase the length of time between watering and apply more at one time. It's a good idea, however, to continue watering the area on a regular basis until it has been mowed at least twice.
Keep in mind that some types of seed germinate quickly and others require a bit more time. Take a mixture of Kentucky Bluegrass and Perennial Ryegrass for example. The ryegrass will begin to appear in a week to ten days under proper germination conditions, but you may not see the bluegrass for three weeks or longer. Do not stop watering too soon or the bluegrass may never germinate. For the first and second week, we suggest watering two to three times a day and thereafter as needed to keep soil moist until the turf is established. We recommend applying the second application of starter fertilizer after the first mowing. Any herbicide to control weeds should not be applied until the new lawn is cut at least three times.
New turf should be mowed for the first time when the grass blades are three inches high. Do not cut more than one third of the leaf blade. Keep in mind that new grass plants are easily damaged so do not cut when the ground is wet and make sure the mower blade is sharp or the plants could easily be pulled from the ground. Regular cutting will increase the density of the new turf, so once you begin mowing, remember to maintain a regular schedule. Also, new seedlings require eight to twelve months to exhibit mature growth characteristics and it is important to stay off the seeded area as much as possible.
Lawns seeded or over-seeded (especially in the spring) cannot be treated with crab grass pre-emergent, therefore it is expected to see some crab grass or broad leaf weeds on newly seeded lawns. A future fertilizer program can correct the problem.
There is not a specific timetable for watering in any soil type. An indication of a plant's water needs can be attained by checking for soil moisture with your index finger about one to two inches deep in the root zone. If soil is moist, leave it alone and check every day or two until the soil begins to feel dry. Then, water thoroughly with a small stream until slight puddling occurs as you did when planting. Water again only when soil is dry to the touch one to two inches below the soil surface in the root zone. Maintain this watering regimen only for the first growing season. Thereafter, when the plant is fully established, watering is only necessary in times of drought.
50% Dawn, Shamrock or Wildwood Kentucky Bluegrass and 50% Assure, Commander, or Legacy Perennial Ryegrass
50/50 mix will give excellent performance in athletic fields, home lawns, and commercial areas. This mixture combines cultivars of two species to produce turf with broad-based disease resistance and tolerance for climactic extremes. It is a fast establishing durable mixture for use in new turf areas or in renovating turf damaged by fusarium blight syndrome, Poa annua infestations, insects, or heavy use. All of the ingredients exhibit unique qualities to provide maximum compatibility over long term usage. Together, they provide early spring green-up, excellent midsummer quality, and good winter hardiness. The high-endophyte ryegrasses make this mix resistant to above-ground feeding insects such as chinch bugs, sod web-worms and army worms.
50/50 mix is adapted throughout the cool humid and cool arid zones.
50/50 mix is particularly well-suited for athletic fields, home lawns, golf course tees and fairways, and premium commercial areas. This is an effective mixture for over seeding these areas with slicer seeders. The mix also provides better rooting and recovery on compacted soils than straight Bluegrass blends.
Recommended Maintenance Practices:
Highest quality and durability is reached using moderate to high maintenance levels. Allow turf to establish prior to heavy use. Excellent results can be obtained using slicer seeders for turf renovation. Maximum Poa annua control is achieved with fall seedings. Mowing at two to three and a half inches is recommended.
Turf Establishment Guidelines:
Adequate seed bed preparation is important in new turf grass establishment as well as in over-seeding existing turf areas. Adjust soil pH and apply starter fertilizer prior to seeding. Frequent, light irrigation is required for optimum germination. Mulch area if irrigation is not available. Under optimum soil temperature and moisture conditions, germination should be complete in three to four weeks. New seedlings require eight to twelve months to exhibit mature growth characteristics.