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 Post subject: okay.. I'll ask
PostPosted: Mon Apr 12, 2004 8:39 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2004 10:54 am
Posts: 10
Location: Denton
when we bought this place it was a new build.. they said they were going
to sod it with St Augustine.. but it sure doesnt' look or act like what
I grew up mowing on the coast.. even where it has had the benifit of
extra water and fertalizer from the rose bed.. it grows then.. but is
very thin bladed.. and thin runners.. about the only resemblance it has
to the St Augustine I grew up with is that it is a carpet grass..

it has gotten very thin though.. I just started learning about the organic
way.. so it has had little food just water.. (chemicals and my kids
don't mix well..)
so I have some questions..
Are there differant strains of St Augustine?

If I seed something else in what would be good to take over... ?

Since I have put down some corn meal about 3 weeks ago.. how long
should I wait to put in seeds?

basically I am sick of the way my lawn looks.. and could use some
advice here.. I jsut printed out the FaQ and will finish reading it...
but I could use some suggestions for replacement grass.. this stuff
just seems to thin bladed to do an adequate job..

thanks..
mark


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 12, 2004 9:34 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 09, 2003 11:17 am
Posts: 315
Location: Dallas,TEXAS
How long has the sod been down? It might be that it just hasn't yet had time to get going in earnest if it's fairly new. You never know what sort of care/fertilzation it had before it became yours. My past experiences with new st. augustine sod is that you need to water it a bit more than you would an already well established st. augstine lawn - perhaps once a week or more if it looks like it needs it. Always water deeply.

Once it appears to be gaining a head of steam, cut back watering to a normal, infrequent and deep schedule as weather dictates. Right now it's trying to establish roots into the soil beneath. The cornmeal was helpful, but if it were me I'd apply amendments aimed at stimulating the roots and the overall health of the soil it's trying dig into.

In no particular order I'd do all of these amendments:

Lava sand for water retention (should lower water requirements in the future)
Humate (I prefer dry, but liquid would work)
Molasses (liquid or dry - liquid is generally more economical, but I like dry for ease of application)

There's more you could add, but these three are the ones I'd key on now. Check local feed stores first. I always find better prices there as opposed to garden centers (orgnic or otherwise). The reason I left out a proper fertilizer amendment is that I think it's pretty standard for sod farms to have already fertilized their turf (using who knows what.. :roll: ) and that you've already applied cornmeal which acts as a mild fertilizer. Plan on fertilizing in June.

Did you happen to see how they layed the sod? Did they run a water press over it to ensure a good seal between the sod and existing soil? If there are any air gaps between the two then the turf above will die pretty quickly. Roots need soil, water and nutrients - not air. Air bad. :x

What sort of soil do you have in your area? It's important for anyone giving advice to know what you have to work with.

This is all off the top of my head. Others might have some other/better suggestions for you.

Good luck, Mark, and keep us posted!

~Dave


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Apr 12, 2004 9:54 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2004 10:54 am
Posts: 10
Location: Denton
it's been in place a couple of years..
as to the soil who knows.. new subdivision.. it's mostly fill of one
kind or another near as I can tell.. some of the neighboring lawns
look okay.. but the grass still just doesn't look like St A..
I guess I will have to dig into the matter a bit further..
of course there is always the possibility that what I grew up calling
St A was something else.. it was much broader leafed.. by several
orders of magintude... hmm.

As to how it was sodded.. I would speculate, from what I saw later in the
same area.. that no there was no pressing involved which could explain
some of the die off out back..

bvack to the soil.. it has been quite the fight to get my roses established..
as well as the little crepe myrtles.. but it would seem that my chinese
parasol seedlings like it okay.. and the weeds LOVE it. took advantage of
the rain to pull gobs of them out of the front lawn today..

I have noted in the places I planted roses this year.. that the grass roots
go down about 6 inches.. some spots less.

I suspect it is merely sod laid over dead fill and sand.. on a slope as well.
and the water just runs off.. going to lay out some soaker hose and see
what that does.

thnks for the suggestions thus far.. :)

mark


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Apr 12, 2004 10:11 pm 
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Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2004 10:54 am
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Location: Denton
here's another one for y'all... what do I use to spread grass seed
if that's the way I decide to go? or what is normally used to spread
fertilizers and such... ?

mark


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2004 7:48 am 
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Joined: Sat Mar 13, 2004 8:39 pm
Posts: 10
Location: Eau Claire, WI
Every hardware store, home store, and nursery in the country will sell spreaders in the landscaping section. You can get either drop or broadcast. I prefer drop because I know exactly where the material is going. With the broadcase I always seemed to end up with seed and fertilizer all over the driveway and sidewalks instead of my lawn.

Use the same spreader for seed and fertilizing. Just remember to wash it out with the hose after each use.

Drop spreading will be slower, but no longer than using a push mower in my opinion.

If your yard is very very small, they sell small broadcast type spreaders that you just hold in your hand if you really want to make yourself work.


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