Seeking advice on potential plans to fix my lawn

Kentucky bluegrass, Fescue, Rye and Bent, etc
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Posts: 13
Joined: October 6th, 2018, 11:54 am
Location: Southeast VA
Grass Type: Bermuda/ TTTF
Lawn Size: 3000-5000
Level: Experienced

Seeking advice on potential plans to fix my lawn

Post by suffolk_lawn » March 19th, 2019, 7:18 pm

Last year I attempted a new lawn of TTTF in my backyard. The previous grass including all weeds had been completely picked clean to the dirt by our 6 chickens (who have now been locked off to a different area) so that saved me the step of killing and scalping everything.

I had a soil test from last spring that showed a low PH and some minor P and K deficiencies, so I tilled in some compost and about 50lb/k of lime, seeded, rolled, and started the watering schedule.

I was happy to see a pretty solid and consistent germination about a week later, which continued until the grass was about 2" tall. Then we had a heavy rain and it was never the same..

The heavy rain caused most of the grass to lay over. Pretty much the entire yard started to damp off. There was definitely a fungus issue of some sort, I tried some fungicide but I think it was too late.

See the attached photos. It was almost a total failure. We've had a mild winter and I have some patches that are very thick and great looking (is that from dog urine?) but the rest is very patchy with some winter weeds and moss.

Part of the issue (I think) is that a good portion of the yard is considerably shady. trees surround the yard on the east, south, and west side, so it gets speckled sun with most of the areas getting 4 hours at best. Im not expecting grass to grow in the areas with less sun than that, I was hoping it would form a natural "line" that I would eventually convert to flower bed.

My current plan to get some sort of spring results is to prep the ground with some mild agitation and maybe a thin layer of compost and seed with PR followed by Scotts starter with weed control (which contains Mesotrione). I completely understand this is a temporary fix, my opinion is the current condition is unacceptable. I would be doing these steps this weekend, I am in zone 8A.

Does anyone have any experience doing something similar? My eventual plan would be to try and control the weeds as much as possible throughout this season and overseed again in the fall, with a mostly fine fescue mix.



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