Preparing your Turf for Cooler Months

Fall is right around the corner. In fact, the first day of autumn was September 23rd this year. Although September and October tend to be hot months in San Diego County, it is still a good time to think about and start to prepare your landscape for the cooler months ahead. At Pacific Green Landscape, we know your turf is an important part of your landscape and one way we keep our clients’ turf healthy and green during the cold winter months is to overseed with rye grass.
A blade of grass has a short lifespan of about six weeks and must continually produce new blades or the grass thins out. Therefore, one way to keep your lawn healthy is to make sure your grass is young and continually developing new blades. You can achieve a young turf by overseeding which is simply spreading grass seed over an existing lawn.
The beginning of October to mid-month is a great time to overseed your warm weather grasses with rye. Grasses such as Kikuyu and Bermuda start going dormant when the weather drops to 55 degrees. Rye grass will sustain the cooler temperature and remain green through the cold months.
How to overseed with rye:

  • Turn your water off for one week prior to “scalping” your turf. This allows the root zone to dry. 
  • “Scalp” your turf down to ground level causing a “dead” look. At this time, verify that your sprinklers are working and that there isn’t anything broken. 
  • Set your watering times for seed germination which is three times a day, every day for three minutes each time. Apply seed and allow two to three weeks for proper germination.
  • When the seed is germinated, turn off your sprinklers. 
  • Let the grass dry for three to four days then mow.
  • Water and fertilize the turf.
  • Then continue to your turf’s regular watering schedule.

Now sit back and enjoy having the only beautiful green lawn in the neighborhood! 
After – When seed is germinated, turn off sprinklers, let dry for 3-4 days and mow. Keep watered and fertilized and enjoy your green, lush turf during the winter!

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