After all this time and money!!

green_123May 16, 2011

Ok. I need help! Last year I took a big hit on the grass, due to lack of rain. It caused a couple of bare spots on lawn. I manually tilled the bare spots and seeded the whole lawn in September of last year. And this year I was look to have better grass. I wanted to be early in applying all the Scott fertilizer applications. I started off with the Scotts Halts crabgrass and weed preventer. But some how it grew more weeds in those areas that were a bit bare. I called up a Scotts Rep. and they said that the Halts prevent crab grass, but some of the ingredients would help certain weeds to grow. So I thought, "I'll wait out the six weeks and apply Scott step 2 weed control". Its now going on 5 weeks, and the grass still has weeds growing in it, and it looks like it needs more seeding. From a distance the grass doesn't look that bad, the weeds blend in with the grass. Right now I don't know what to do. Should I repeat step 2 again, or Should I reseed heavily? I've put alot of time and money into this grass and I don't know what to do...Please Help?

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tiemco

Weed and feed is a waste in my opinion. It's too late to seed now in NJ. Get a tank sprayer. Buy some Weed B Gone Max and Weed B Gone Chickweed, Clover and Oxalis killer. Put the required amounts in the proper amount of water in your sprayer. Spray all the weeds in your lawn. It will deliver the weed killer to the weeds better and you will use less herbicide. If you have a lot of weeds you might want to use a hose end sprayer instead, but make sure you read the directions on all herbicides. If you tank mix in your hose end sprayer you will need to do a little math to figure out the proper oz./gallon rate. Fertilize at the end of this month, then no more till Sept. 1, and that's when you want to overseed again if you feel you need to.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2011 at 6:52PM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

What kind of grass are you growing?
How much shade do you have?
How often do you water and for how long?
How low do you mow and how often?

Starting early with lawn care can be a waste of money - as your title indicates. With chemical fertilizer, if you water before your grass is growing, the fertilizer will wash right through and never benefit the plants. If you fertilize when only the weeds are actively growing, then you just fertilized the weeds. If you fertilize just when the grass starts to come out of the winter doldrums, then you will find yourself mowing 3 times per week to keep up with the spectacular growth. Therefore it is better to wait until you see the grass slowing down, and then apply your first fertilizer. That might be now(ish). At the latest it would be Memorial Day. Any later than that and the heat and fertilizer can burn your lawn.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2011 at 11:33PM
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botanicalbill(9b SWFlorida)

Look at surflan as a pre-emergent. It worked wonders for my bare spots.
I agree with these guys as you should not buy products that complete multiple tasks. When you fertilize, put down only fertilizer. When you put down pre-emergent, only put down that.
Every lawn owner should own a gallon of concentrate of these three pesticides, glyphosate 41%(roundup concentrate), a pre-emergent such as surflan and a gallon of 2,4-d 65% concentrate. Those are the musts. In addition you can then add more specialty pesticides like sedgehammer and fluazifop or what would be beneficial for your lawn and climate. I probably have about 9 or so pesticides, all in concentrate.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2011 at 11:43PM
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green_123

Thanks Guys for your response! Tiemco, Right now that seems like the best solution. Buying the herbicide seperately, then the fertilizer. I'm not exactly sure what kind of grass I'm growing Dchall. I believe its mainly perinnal, but I also seeded a decent amount with TLC tall fescue grass last fall. 15% of the lawn is shaded so I used a dense shade seed for that area. It has grown well. The lawn gets cut once a week. I used to water every other day but,after last years drought, I was told to water twice a week. (The grass dryed up bad last year, hence the bare spots.) Presumably, less intervals and longer watering sessions, strengthens the roots and would prevent that from happening in the future. Botanicalbill, when is the best time to put down surflan?

    Bookmark   May 17, 2011 at 3:00PM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

You did not say how long you water. I water for 3-5 hours per zone, all at once, once per month in the cool season and once per week during the hottest part of the year. My sprinkler puts out 1/8 inch of water per hour, so 3-5 hours equals 3/8 to 5/8 inch. That is not much water for a week in the summer. But at that slow rate, almost any soil can absorb it without runoff.

    Bookmark   May 19, 2011 at 2:37AM
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green_123

It seems like you have the watering down to a Science. How did you come up with that measurement, and how would I go about creating it for me own lawn?

    Bookmark   May 20, 2011 at 2:52PM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

Everything I do is down to a science. It is a curse. Want to know how to brush your teeth without wasting water?

For your lawn, get tuna or cat food cans, put them around the yard, turn on the sprinkler and note the time it takes to fill the can. In my case I ran it for 4 hours and the cans were only half filled. If you can fill the can in an hour or less, you might have a problem with runoff. That is another problem.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2011 at 1:28AM
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bpgreen(5UT)

"Want to know how to brush your teeth without wasting water?"

Yes.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2011 at 12:06AM
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green_123

Just got done eating a tuna sandwich. Several more left. During this current interlude, it seems most appropriate to know: How one brushes his teeth without wasting water?

    Bookmark   May 24, 2011 at 8:27PM
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nearandwest(7)

Well then, you'll want to stick around for the entertaining performance of "how to take a shower without wasting water" by dchall.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2011 at 9:31PM
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dchall_san_antonio(8 San Antonio)

LOLOL. Before you spit out the foamy mix of soap and saliva that normally sticks tenaciously to the sides of the sink, rinse your mouth with just a sip of water and swish it around. Instead of spitting out the sticky foam (that needs a lot of water to wash away), you will spit out a watery mess that drains away easily with just a splash of water. I have no idea why I know this. My parents did not do it and nobody else I know does it.

There is a guy here in town who showers and dries off in a pan and drains the water out to use on his roses. Every few years they do a story on him. He has no lawn, by the way. Only roses.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2011 at 12:37PM
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bpgreen(5UT)

"There is a guy here in town who showers and dries off in a pan and drains the water out to use on his roses. "

That would be illegal here (although I think there may be some efforts to change some of the water laws). Some places that have laws against gray water on the lawn and garden have them due to misplaced health fears. In the west, it has to do with water rights laws. Technically, you don't buy the water. You buy rights to the use of the water and you only get one use. If you showered, that's a use, so you have to let the water drain for the person who has the downstream rights. You can put a pan in the shower to catch the water that runs while you wait for it to warm up, though, since you haven't used that water.

Rain barrels are also generally illegal, because you can't impede the flow of the water (kind of like those old westerns where the mean cattle rancher would dam up the creek to drive off the kind settlers with their sheep). Of course, rain barrels are also almost useless, since we get almost all of our precipitation in the winter, so if you had a rain barrel, you'd probably fill it, then get to use it once and it would stay empty until fall, when it's no longer needed.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2011 at 9:24PM
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nearandwest(7)

That guy either has the cleanest roses in town, or the dirtiest roses in town. I'm not sure which.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2011 at 12:05AM
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