Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Kentucky bluegrass, Fescue, Rye and Bent, etc
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Adam_M
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Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by Adam_M » September 14th, 2020, 3:24 pm

I got a peat moss spreader and it's kind of a game changer for me - takes 1/2 the time and 1/2 the effort to spread the peat moss, and it goes down wonderfully evenly/consistently somewhere around 1/8" thick.

So - after the new grass comes in this year, I'm hoping to push the OM up as fast as can be integrated (in 2021). Is there any rule of thumb on the frequency of application? It seems to me that as long as the crowns aren't buried, it's probably OK.

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by MorpheusPA » September 14th, 2020, 5:15 pm

Yep, which is about a quarter inch at a time, every six weeks or so, give or take, during the season. But keep an eye on it and make sure it's actually working in and that the crowns aren't simply adjusting themselves to grow up over the peat.

Peat doesn't decay, so its limit is how fast it can work in.

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by mobiledynamics » September 14th, 2020, 5:23 pm

Is peat a good idea as a topper. I mess will it change the top soil profile (too wet if rained heavily) and then right below, if not water retentive, will it make the roots not want to see water down ?

As well. with too much -peat- , won't it make the top surface too airy .

I can see it being used to top seeds to aid in germination. Never would consider it as a amendment....although I know it's great for containers/potted stuff

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by MorpheusPA » September 14th, 2020, 7:10 pm

Limited amounts are just fine, so for a few years, sure. I wouldn't dig in bale after bale into a garden or anything--it would prob'ly end up being too hydrophobic.

I don't even like using it in potting soil for that reason.

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by mobiledynamics » September 14th, 2020, 7:19 pm

For potting mix, I tend to err on bark based/coarse vermiculate and some peat (depends on what goes in the container/pot). Never was a fan of peat anywhere else except as a topper to seed.

Just did not picture it as a soil amender even though the masses do, cause IMO, the topsoil can be wet or dry and much different than the native soil of whatever the roots are in that need to be accustomed to said native soil


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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by andy10917 » September 14th, 2020, 9:54 pm

I am a hardcore, unrepentant evangelist of peat moss. It is the only organic matter supplement that I will actually pay money for, in quantity. Leaves are wonderful only because they are free. Compost is also useful because it is free (for me). Nothing delivers the punch though of the later-stage OM in peat moss for me, though. After many years of using it, I can stop and do "drive-by weeding" on the lawn while mowing and have a wild violet or even a wild onion come out of the soil, bulb and all. In my experience, I never see peat moss make a hydrophobic layer or component when it's applied properly, and where the soil has enough of a fungal component to process it properly and quickly. Lawns fed it, sawdust and other substances eat it like dessert. My wife goes back-and-forth to the local HD and brings it home eight bales at a time, and I empty the bales where needed and clean up the bags before she's back with the next eight. Beyond the lawn, it is the go-to for Hosta plantings.

Some people I know that are synthetic-heavy users report to me that they can take 2-3 times as long to process in their yards.

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by KBGkicksazz » September 15th, 2020, 7:00 pm

Aeration is not suggested much on ATY but doing an aeration and filling the holes with peat is a good way to increase. OM.

I’m also another proponent of peat moss.

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by northeastlawn » September 15th, 2020, 7:33 pm

[quote=Adam_M post_id=343632 time=1600111491 user_id=8180]
I got a peat moss spreader and it's kind of a game changer for me - takes 1/2 the time and 1/2 the effort to spread the peat moss, and it goes down wonderfully evenly/consistently somewhere around 1/8" thick.[/quote]

The compost spreader was the best thing I ever bought. Have you figured out the perfect size bale yet?

For pure bang for your buck the XL bales are the most economical, but you have to cut them into thirds to load them into the spreader. Which then involved shovels. But to simply load a single bale into the compost spreader without having to use a wheel barrow and shovel, the Md size bale is perfect.

Not the most economical, but easiest to load. I have bought the Lg bales and cut them in half, but the Md size works great if I am doing a reno for a friend or relative and cost doesn't matter as much as getting it done as painless as possible.

I can't think of the CF for the various sizes, but they are usually labeled Sm, Md, Lg, XL.

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by PSU4ME » September 15th, 2020, 10:58 pm

Is the timing of this key? I like to apply OM things in the late fall and early winter just because it’s cooler but there is very little “processing” at those times.

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by KBGkicksazz » September 16th, 2020, 5:50 am

PSU4ME wrote:
September 15th, 2020, 10:58 pm
Is the timing of this key? I like to apply OM things in the late fall and early winter just because it’s cooler but there is very little “processing” at those times.
I don’t think it really matters if it doesn’t get processed by microbes now it just moves to next spring.

Just don’t go super deep and spread it with a rake. Be prepared to be a dusty mess and need to shower and wash clothes afterwards.

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by PSU4ME » September 16th, 2020, 11:26 am

Thanks, I’ve spread it before, pulled a SM bale out of my nose

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by mobiledynamics » September 16th, 2020, 2:58 pm

For own wiki, when peat -breaks down-, are we saying it does get -incorporated- into the soil. I was think it would just be a different -layer----so for example, if you had sandy soil, the native soil would be sand, and then ontop would be a -wet- peat layer, not encouraging deeper roots, since the top was where the moisture was ?

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by Adam_M » September 16th, 2020, 3:13 pm

northeastlawn wrote:
September 15th, 2020, 7:33 pm
Adam_M wrote:
September 14th, 2020, 3:24 pm
I got a peat moss spreader and it's kind of a game changer for me - takes 1/2 the time and 1/2 the effort to spread the peat moss, and it goes down wonderfully evenly/consistently somewhere around 1/8" thick.
The compost spreader was the best thing I ever bought. Have you figured out the perfect size bale yet?

For pure bang for your buck the XL bales are the most economical, but you have to cut them into thirds to load them into the spreader. Which then involved shovels. But to simply load a single bale into the compost spreader without having to use a wheel barrow and shovel, the Md size bale is perfect.

Not the most economical, but easiest to load. I have bought the Lg bales and cut them in half, but the Md size works great if I am doing a reno for a friend or relative and cost doesn't matter as much as getting it done as painless as possible.

I can't think of the CF for the various sizes, but they are usually labeled Sm, Md, Lg, XL.
Hmm - I didn't know such a thing exists. I've been getting the compressed bales from lowes/HD forever. This spreader holds about 2/3 of a bag. I just cut the end and pour it in. It wasn't too bad.

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by MorpheusPA » September 16th, 2020, 5:58 pm

mobiledynamics wrote:
September 16th, 2020, 2:58 pm
For own wiki, when peat -breaks down-, are we saying it does get -incorporated- into the soil. I was think it would just be a different -layer----so for example, if you had sandy soil, the native soil would be sand, and then ontop would be a -wet- peat layer, not encouraging deeper roots, since the top was where the moisture was ?
Eventually, everything returns to dust. Or, in this case, carbon dioxide and water. But it takes decades, if not centuries.

Peat moss will work in to some extent, depending on your soil life, but you'll have to determine that one for yourself. Most of it's likely to remain in the O (organic) layer atop your A (first top soil) layer, at least for a while. Are worms going to drag it in? Sure. How fast? I can't say.
Dog poo disappears off my lawn in hours during spring, summer, and most of fall. Zip. Gone. Observation indicates a host of worms, beetles, and whatnot disassembling it and carrying it off for consumption. I haven't stepped in any in ages, and we have populations of up to five dogs at a time, depending on who's visiting for however long.
This does not sit atop the surface. It's gone down below.
Milorganite, soy, and so on? Slower. Or so I assume, although I've seen ant hills at work on my soy, carrying it down below. That certainly didn't stay up top.

So for the Wiki..."It Depends."

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by andy10917 » September 17th, 2020, 7:32 am

The simple answer is to apply more once it has disappeared. Morph's 0.25" every six weeks lines up pretty well with that timing in my experience.

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by mobiledynamics » September 17th, 2020, 3:40 pm

Mods. LMK if should make a new thread but on the topic of how things (move) within the earth, how much or how little between the worms and such does -soil- move from one area to another...

I once planted some large shrubs from 15G containers. I root washed it as much as possible but have often wondered with the (shrub plant plug) and how different it was compared to native soil. what happens over time. Does the bugs down below do some incorporating. Or if one was to dig this area 50 years later, they will see one soil type and the original planting hole, it would have a much different soil profile.

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Re: Adding OM - How much peat moss can the lawn take? (planning for 2021)

Post by MorpheusPA » September 17th, 2020, 7:37 pm

Soil mixing? Not very much, in my experience. Simply mixing soil horizons is an experiment in horror.

Archaeologists might very well come along in fifty thousand years and go, "Yep, the owner planted something here." :-) OK, so most likely minor erosion or simple mixing would take care of it in that amount of time, but you get the idea. In the human time frame, not so much.

Even within fifteen years, the sandier edges of the patio haven't mixed much with the garden soils, except where I've mixed them a little bit. Whereas the organics have worked well into the sand itself, which is also populated with tons of worms. What was pure white sand way back when is now deep brown and black.

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