Adding Bermuda Seed to Existing Bermuda Grass

mykidsdadApril 24, 2009

I'm new to the boards and continue to be a lifetime learner of home yard care. I've managed to kill off alot of the existing weeds in the front of my yard (alot was Poanna). The resulting loss has created bare spots and thinning.

I live in the south and have hard clay soil. Is adding bermuda grass seed to the existing bermuda lawn with an overseeder/splitter a good way to go? If so, please help me understand what type of bermuda seed I should use and what I should be looking for on the labels.

Any and all advice is greatly appreciated!

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You live in the South, but where in the South?

Your yard is in FULL sun?

Do you have irrigation?

What large is the area you want to seed?

Why don't you buy sod instead? It's so cheap right now... If you do, you get a much better quality bermudagrass than seeding.

a pallet of Hybrid Bermuda sod, like 419, with coverage for about 500 sf will cost under $100 in most places.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 12:24PM
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I'm in SC; Full Sun, Automatic Irrigation System, Approximately 2000 square feet. The yard was originally sodded.

The existing sod is good. I'm hoping to thicken it up through adding seed with an overseeder/splicer.

Thanks for the reply.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 12:35PM
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I see that you are in SC, but SC has different weather patterns as you may or not be aware. What grows in Charleston my not grow in Greenville.

What city are you in?

DON'T OVER SEED, you are going to introduce a lower quality bermudagrass than what you have. You most likely have Bermuda 419 or similar, but definately a hybrid bermuda. There are no sod farmers growing bermuda sod by seed that I'm aware of.

Of 2000 sf of grass, how much would you say is damaged?

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 12:49PM
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The bottom line is if you have a lawn consisting of bermuda sod, you

You lawn needs monthly fertilizer and 1" per week of irrigation. If it is getting both of those and is still thin then either it is going into or coming out of dormancy or has too much shade. In either case, there isn't anything seeding can do to help you.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 12:50PM
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I do the 1"-1 1/4"/week watering but ony add fertilizer every few months (concerned I will burn it up). Have not added anything yet because our local extension agency recommends first fertilization after lawn has entirely greened up which it definately has not.

There are no areas bad enough that I would feel new sod is necessary just an overall thinning (like my hair!:). I thought adding seed to the existing would thicken it up.

The grass has not greened much so it is probably still in dormancy like you said iforgotitsonevermind.

When I add fertilizer what ratio should I use? I've had a soil test done a few years back. The potassium and, I believe it is phosphate?, were at good levels. pH was fine too.


    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 2:44PM
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You need to feed bermuda once per month. It is a heavy feeder. You can use scotts turfbuilder from the hardware store at the recommended rate on the bag.

This will solve your woes but bermudagrass is for warm climates. In SC it will only be optimal mid june-mid sep.

But remember, once you feed it, you wil have to mow it and mow it a lot or else you'll scalp it and it will be brown anyway. If you mow at 1.25" then you will have to mow once per week religiously. That is a bit too high for bermuda by the way. It should be lowest setting on your mower.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 6:36PM
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You should not use any seed, rather restore the grass you have. Read the Bermuda Bible and follow it to the letter this season and by early Summer your lawn should be restored.

If you want to speed up the process you can rip up sprigs from th eexisting turn and plant them in the bare areas.

    Bookmark   April 24, 2009 at 8:13PM
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Thanks everyone!

You saved me time, money, and alot of headaches and aspirin.

Appreciate you taking the time to share your knowledge and experience with me.

mykidsdad :o)

    Bookmark   April 25, 2009 at 12:26AM
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