Spring and Fall are the best times of year to fix bare patches in your lawn. 50’s – 60’s temperatures are perfect right now in Chesapeake Virginia and the moisture in the soil is just right for keeping your new seed from drying out and dying.
Choosing The Right Seed
Tall fescue is the preferred grass across the state of Virginia. It is noted for having the deepest root system of the cool-season grasses, allowing it to avoid drought be using water it finds deeper in the soil profile. Tall fescue seed germinates quickly (10-14 days) and is readily available as sod around the state. It performs best in full sun to moderate shade, is tolerant of a wide range of physical and chemical soil conditions, and performs best at cutting heights of 2-3 inches. It is managed as a bunch (clump) grass although some of the latest cultivars are touted for their rhizomatous (below-ground stems) growth habit. Tall fescue is a good choice for low to moderate maintenance lawns. Ask us about using Zoysiagrass and bermudagrass and Kentucky bluegrass as well! They require a little more maintenance but they are tough and have some appealing aesthetic qualities different from tall fescue.
It’s best to cover your new seed with ⅛ – ¼ inch of soil. This will help maintain the proper amount of moisture and temperature around the seed while it germinates. You can do this by gently raking in the seed with a metal tong rake, be careful not to displace your seed. You may also want to add a thin layer of compost to help protect your seed from heavy rain and wind.
Early morning is the best time to water. Less wind and cooler temperatures will give your new seeds the best environment for germination. Do not allow the top ½ inch of the soil to become dry until the grass is 1 inch tall, but don’t let the water puddle and displace your seeds. Approximately 10 minutes of watering should do the job. Once the grass is 1 inch tall, water the grass every other day until the grass is established (approximately three weeks). Once the grass is established, revert to watering 1-2 times a week for a total of approximately 1 inch of water. Enjoy your new turf!
New Image Lawn & Scapes
Jr.,Goatley, Mike. “Crop and Soil Environmental News: What grass should I grow for my lawn?” , www.sites.ext. Virginia Cooperative Extension, March 2008. Web. Retrieved 4/4/2019 from: https://www.sites.ext.vt.edu/newsletter-archive/cses/2008-03/WhatGrass.html