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View Diary: The Daily Bucket - Stumped? (90 comments)

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    •  A number of things (9+ / 0-)

      1)  Get a soil test and rebalance it according to best practices.  This can be a trip and a half if you don't know what best practices ARE, but...  Logan Labs does $20 basic soil tests that have more information than you could shake a stick at.

      Why:  Improper soil balance is the worst thing for your lawn (and gardens and vegetables and...)  I've seen lawns trying to grow in something the pH of watered down orange juice.

      2)  From the test, if potassium saturation is below 5%, kick it up to around 5%.  If higher, you can nudge it if you want, to as high as around 10%, but it isn't necessary.  I tend to stabilize in the 7-8% range.

      Why:  Potassium enhances cold weather performance, disease resistance, and a half a dozen other things.

      3)  Overseed with winter-durable Kentucky bluegrass.  This works if average night-time temperatures don't go much under 15.  If your area does, good perennial ryegrass will perform better (but has weaker summer performance).

      Why:  Elite KBG can have fantastic winter color, and even if it doesn't its natural color is so dark that even half faded out it's still a great green.  PR performs well in winter, but isn't particularly tolerant of hot summer weather (but it's a great Michigan grass).  KBG also fills in and repairs itself.

      4)  Feed correctly.  Contrary to the ads, grass hates being fed in March and April.  Hold first feeding until Memorial Day (May 15th if you want to jump the gun, but no earlier).  Feed the second time on September 1st.  Then October 1st.  The last feeding should be done when you mow the last time (for me, around Thanksgiving).

      Why:  Feeding this way encourages root development and carbohydrate storage in fall.  Feeding in spring taps carbs for top growth and weakens the lawn for the rest of the year (but really whacks summer performance).

      (-6.38, -7.03) Moderate left, moderate libertarian

      by Lonely Liberal in PA on Wed Apr 03, 2013 at 02:19:16 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

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