Renovators: Now You Hear The Truth

Discuss how to and whether you should renovate your lawn
spectrum1c
Posts: 90
Joined: June 1st, 2018, 9:51 pm
Location: Cape Cod Massachusetts
Grass Type: KBG front yard, Tall Fescue backyard
Lawn Size: 10000-20000
Level: Some Experience

Re: Renovators: Now You Hear The Truth

Post by spectrum1c » September 22nd, 2018, 1:47 pm

andy10917 wrote:
August 19th, 2018, 9:06 am
OK, Renovators - now you've probably killed the old lawn and used the opportunity of last week or this week to get the seed down, and you've self-medicated with adult beverages. You're just seeing the first little bambinos of the new lawn (or will soon!).

Now we tell you about one of the most frustrating steps in a Renovation, and what you need to do to deal with it...

Sprout-and-Pout. Ugh!

The new grass will go from a few seedlings to a green haze and start to grow for a while, and then just stop. You'll wonder if you did something wrong, and what action you should take. Many will bet the fertilizer that was applied has been used up, and the Renovation is stalling.

That's NOT what is happening. The seed uses the stored food in the seed to get the sprout going, and then begins to build the root system. Top-growth often appears to stop at this stage.

The worst thing you can do is hit it with a lot of Nitrogen at this stage - top growth will be forced, and the plants will have more blade growth than it can support with the existing roots. Any (even short) hot spell in the ensuing couple of weeks can cause browning or even loss of some grass in sunny areas. Not good.

The best thing you can do when Sprout-and-Pout occurs is nothing - just keep up the watering and wait it out. Yes, it can take 10-20 days to work through it, but it's the first sign that the grass is moving from a helpless infant to something that won't require constant care. My experience says that the more you leave Sprout-and-Pout alone, the sooner the 3X - 5X watering can begin to slide toward longer periods between watering.

There are always the Adult Beverages to retreat to if you feel you should be doing something and know you should resist it... :D

I'm glad I saw this post. I am 4 weeks into my lawn renovation and was planning to put down a second helping of starter fertilizer as my soil is deficient in phosphate. Should I avoid it at this time?

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andy10917
Posts: 29112
Joined: February 23rd, 2009, 10:48 pm
Location: NY (Lower Hudson Valley)
Grass Type: Emblem KBG (Front); Blueberry KBG Monostand (Back)
Lawn Size: 1 acre-2 acre
Level: Advanced

Re: Renovators: Now You Hear The Truth

Post by andy10917 » September 22nd, 2018, 7:52 pm

Four weeks after WHAT? Seed-Down? Germination?

spectrum1c
Posts: 90
Joined: June 1st, 2018, 9:51 pm
Location: Cape Cod Massachusetts
Grass Type: KBG front yard, Tall Fescue backyard
Lawn Size: 10000-20000
Level: Some Experience

Re: Renovators: Now You Hear The Truth

Post by spectrum1c » September 23rd, 2018, 1:13 pm

Oops, good point. 4 weeks from seed down (I fertilized at the time of seed down)

PW405
Posts: 305
Joined: June 25th, 2016, 12:37 pm
Location: OKC (Central OK)
Grass Type: Bermuda, NoNet Fescue/SPF30 HBG
Lawn Size: 1000-3000
Level: Experienced

Re: Renovators: Now You Hear The Truth

Post by PW405 » September 24th, 2018, 7:49 am

Andy, I added KBG to my fescue overseed this year and I still wish to pursue the aggressive Fall N Regimen. Due to fescue's head start on the KBG, It seems I may have difficulty visually confirming when sprout and pout has ended. Any tips?

Additionally - I'm planning to mow at about 21-28 days after seed down. The established fescue is getting tall and it will be REALLY tall by then. My thoughts are that I want the KBG-fuzz to get as much sun as possible so it can do that photosynthesize-thingamajig. I hear that's all the rage with young plants these days. Should I avoid mowing for a longer period?

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andy10917
Posts: 29112
Joined: February 23rd, 2009, 10:48 pm
Location: NY (Lower Hudson Valley)
Grass Type: Emblem KBG (Front); Blueberry KBG Monostand (Back)
Lawn Size: 1 acre-2 acre
Level: Advanced

Re: Renovators: Now You Hear The Truth

Post by andy10917 » September 24th, 2018, 8:17 am

You can mow as soon as you're sure that there is no ungerminated seed that will get sucked up and mulched into nothing.

Don't overthink sprout-and-pout. When you go outside and the grass appears to look the exact same as a couple of days earlier, you are still in sprout-and-pout. When it appears to BOTH resume growth AND tiller, you're done with S&P. It's that simple.


PW405
Posts: 305
Joined: June 25th, 2016, 12:37 pm
Location: OKC (Central OK)
Grass Type: Bermuda, NoNet Fescue/SPF30 HBG
Lawn Size: 1000-3000
Level: Experienced

Re: Renovators: Now You Hear The Truth

Post by PW405 » September 29th, 2018, 2:04 pm

See any reason to avoid applying BLSC and KH to a lawn currently in Sn'P?

(Perceived benefit being better/deeper water penetration and soil flocculation to (perhaps) make it easier for the young roots to push into the soil?)

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andy10917
Posts: 29112
Joined: February 23rd, 2009, 10:48 pm
Location: NY (Lower Hudson Valley)
Grass Type: Emblem KBG (Front); Blueberry KBG Monostand (Back)
Lawn Size: 1 acre-2 acre
Level: Advanced

Re: Renovators: Now You Hear The Truth

Post by andy10917 » September 29th, 2018, 3:32 pm

You can apply either to a new lawn.

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andy10917
Posts: 29112
Joined: February 23rd, 2009, 10:48 pm
Location: NY (Lower Hudson Valley)
Grass Type: Emblem KBG (Front); Blueberry KBG Monostand (Back)
Lawn Size: 1 acre-2 acre
Level: Advanced

Re: Renovators: Now You Hear The Truth

Post by andy10917 » August 22nd, 2020, 12:17 pm

Ah, time to wake this thread up. It's a good idea for less-experienced renovators to give this thread a read and understand it, and a reminder to those the have some experience with Renovations. Notice that we generally wait each year until you're totally committed before dropping this thread on you.

Break out the adult beverages...

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