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Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

Posted by davidpj 6a (My Page) on
Thu, Aug 25, 11 at 8:30

Hello,

I'm making plans for fall aerating, overseeding, and fertilizing our heat & water distressed North Carolina tall fescue lawn. This year I'm considering having a landscaper perform the work. One landscaper is recommending these tall fescue varieties:
2nd Millennium Tall Fescue
Firenza Tall Fescue
Rhambler Tall Fescue
Does anyone have experience with or comments about these varieties? Thanks for your suggestions.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

They are good older cultivars that have tested well in NTEP trials of the past. I assume that's what he has in inventory right now so that's what he wants to use. Currently 3rd Millenuium SRP is available, as well as Rhambler SRP. If it was my lawn I would probably provide him with the seed I wanted to use. The current NTEP data shows Bullseye, Fat Cat, Faith, Finelawn Xpress, Rhambler SRP, Speedway, Jamboree, RK 5, Gazelle II, Sidewinder, RK 5, Turbo and Wolfpack II to be the top performers qualitywise in North Carolina. TTTF's main adversary is brown patch, so it is in your best interest to select cultivars that are brown patch resistent. The top brown patch performers are: Hemi, Mustang 4, 3rd Millenium SRP, Titanium LS, Wolfpack II, Bullseye, Talledega, Catalyst, Sidewinder, RK 4, Turbo, Cannavaro, Cochise IV, and RK 4. Bullseye would definitely be one seed I would use. Turbo would be another good choice, as well as Sidewinder. Hemi is also one that I wouldn't overlook, as it wasn't in the top for quality, but it was 6.4, which is acceptable.


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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

Thanks tiemco for the great information. I wasn't aware of ntep.org so that was also very helpful.

In the recent past I've purchased Lesco seed and years ago I used Scotts. How do I find a place that sells specific cultivars of seeds? Can I do this with Lesco seed?


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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

No, Lesco generally carries only a few blends of seeds, and they try to use seeds they have developed. One of the best online TTTF sellers that I have found is The Hogan Company. They carry many of the newest cultivars and are happy to sell small quantities, and make custom mixes. Oliger Seeds also carries some good TTTF cultivars.


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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

Thanks agin tiemco. I'm now understanding the ntep tables and trying to narrow down the choices. My number 1 issue is drought resistance and followed by brown patch resistance. I like Bullseye and that is my number 1 choice. Beyond that I'm not sure, and I'm unsure of how many cultivars I should choose. What about just choosing Bullseye?

I'm also trying to match it up my selection with what The Hogan Company sells. They do not show 3rd Millenium SRP. I have a call into them for additional assistance.

This has been very enlightening and I really appreciate your help.


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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

Yes, Bullseye seems to be the winner in terms of drought, disease and performance where you live. Most companies blend three TTTF's together, but this is probably an unecessary step since TTTF genetics are very similar between cultivars. With KBG it's much more important to do since the genetic differences are much greater between certain cultivars, so much so that they have been divided into separate classifications (compact, compact america, shamrock, etc). With tall fescue this isn't the case, not that there isn't genetic differences, but it's not enough to have to worry about. I used three when I did my lawn renovation, but I was just following convention. Since you are overseeding into an existing lawn, using just Bullseye would be fine in my opinion.


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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

I've been trying to find a phone number for the maker of Bullseye seed so I can find a somewhat nearby source for it. So far I can't find the maker of it. Anyone know who makes the seed and/or their phone number?


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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

Burlingham Seeds. I'll let you find the number.


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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

You could try Southern Seed in Middlesex NC, they came recommended to me from this forum and are great people.


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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

Thanks tiemco.

Burlingham Seeds:
http://www.burlinghamseeds.com/
1-800-221-7333

Also thanks caseyc3 for Southern Seed. They have a mix of 3 of the following cultivars:
Tarheel II
Coronodo TDH
Endeavor
Wolfpack II
Silverstar

I could find much on any of these except for Wolfpack II. Maybe they're older cultivars?


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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

I really don't see the problem with calling a seed company and having them mail it to you. Sure everyone wants to save money, but the shipping is going to cost you 20-30 bucks. When it comes to grass seed, I buy what I want, not what local seed sellers have. If you want to use the Southern Seed blend then you will have to do the NTEP analysis to see if they are right for you. Wolfpack II is very good btw, and Tarheel was one of the first brown patch resistent cultivars, so I assume II is better, the others I don't know about. Good luck.


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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

tiemco, I agree with you. I know what I want now and I can't find it locally. I'm probably going to buy 3 bags from Oliger Seeds.


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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

Do you think there's a significant disadvantage to using 2nd Millenium and Firena, even though they aren't the newest cultivars?

I think I've chosen my landscaper, but they will only proviude 2nd Millenium, Firenza, and Rhambler. I can provide them seed, but they aren't deducting much from quote. Just wondering if the added cost for my preferred mix of 3rd Millenium, Bullseye, Cochise, and Inferno is worth the added cost and hassle.

Thanks for your comments.


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RE: Grass Seed Varieties for NC Piedmont

I used a southern blend variety from Lowe's Hardware last fall (mostly rebel and rebel II variety) and it did pretty well over this past hot and dry summer (Piedmont, NC area). The tall fescue that I purchased from Lowe's hardware last year to replace larger bare sections mostly died during this summer which leads me to believe that the seed blend in the sod was Kentucky 31 or other grass cultivar that is not well suited for NC. I should have listened to my instincts and overseeded the sod with the southern seed blend as well.


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