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By southernsca10146077, Dec 5 2017 03:01PM

What is the best time to seed?

Seeds germinate when spring temperatures approach 70 degrees. In addition, the soil needs to be moist to promote seed germination. If temperatures are too high then seeds will not be able to stay slightly moist. Also, the seeds need to be in contact with soil in order to germinate. Grass seed can be planted in early fall. Seeds need about two months to germinate and grow enough before freezing temperatures arrive.

How should I plant grass seeds?

Remove any dead grass and loosen the topsoil with a rake. Spread the seeds. Rake over the seeds lightly with the tines of the rake turned up. Add a 1/4” layer of straw mulch on top of the seeds to keep them from drying out. Make sure the seeds are in contact with the soil by pressing down on the seeds with a drum roller. Water the seeds two to three times per day to keep them somewhat moist. Each watering should last about 15 to 25 minutes. Daily watering needs to continue until the seeds germinate. This might take two to three weeks.

How can I get my soil tested?

Contact your local Cooperative Extension office to find out how to send in a soil sample for a free soil test. A soil test should state the pH of the soil. A pH below 7 would indicate that the soil is acidic. Most grasses like a pH of 6 to 7. Lime can be added to the soil if the pH is too low. An alkaline soil would be indicated by a pH above 7.

What is the meaning of a fertilizer’s numbers?

Each container of fertilizer is labeled with three numbers. These numbers refer to the amount of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium respectively contained within the fertilizer. Nitrogen is very important for grass. It gives grass its healthy green color and helps it grow. A lawn that is pale green or yellow in color may need more nitrogen. A lawn that is very dark green in color might have taken in too much nitrogen.

What fertilizer should I use?

Most grasses need a fertilizer that is high in nitrogen. For example, a formula of 28-0-3 is common. Slow-release fertilizers are helpful, especially for sandy soils. Use a fertilizer recommended for your grass type.

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