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Overseeding the Lawn in the Fall

When most people envision a healthy, vibrant lawn, the sepia tones of antique photographs are anything but picture perfect. Fortunately, there’s a way to avoid that less than lively shade and bring back the green even through the winter months, when most grasses lie dormant and lose their vibrant verdancy. It may require a bit more attention and care, but you reap what you sow, and sowing some seeds may very well mean the difference between a property that leaves your neighbors green with envy or one that leaves you feeling the winter blues.

Though many property owners allow their lawns to run their natural course in winter, overseeding the lawn in the fall will ensure that the green carpet of your landscaping continues from early autumn on into winter. Before you pick your seed, however, there are a few things to consider, such as type, placement, and timing. Proceed without a plan, and you run the risk that your project of overseeding the lawn in fall will grow nothing but a sense of frustration.

Give Brown a Beating and Fall for Overseeding

Overseeding the lawn in the fall is a practice specifically performed with a goal of planting a species of grass that will temporarily grow and fill in over your permanent grass. After running the course of their growth in the cooler seasons of fall and winter, they die out to make room once again for the growth of warm-season grasses.

Certain types of grass seed are more suited to overseeding, the best of which are ryegrasses. Ryegrasses tend to be more cost-effective, and their rate of seed germination; speedy growth; ability to adapt to their surroundings; tolerance for both shade and sunlight; tolerance for mowing; and density throughout winter months all make this species an ideal option for overseeding. One thing important to realize, however, is that unlike permanent warm-weather grasses that are merely dormant during winter, the death of ryegrass in spring is a permanent death.

What Lawns Will be Needing Before Overseeding

Overseeding the lawn in the fall is most effective when the days have become cooler on a more consistent basis, somewhere in the low- to mid-seventies temperature range. Spread those seeds in warmer weather, and they might not survive, which means the investment you’ve made of time and money will yield nothing but defeat.

Remember that lawns will be more receptive to your attempts at overseeding if you’ve made room to grow. Clear any debris, then mow the existing lawn to a height that’s lower than you would for a routine trimming, then remove any grass clippings that might have collected along the way. Not only will it improve the outlook a little more, but it will allow the grass seeds to have direct contact with the soil. Dense lawns may need to be dethatched, which thins them out a bit and loosens them up so that overseeding can be successful.

Now that you’ve prepped your property for overseeding, it’s time to spread the seeds. Use a broadcast spreader to achieve the best coverage and distribution of your seeds, but if you opt for a drop spreader, pay close attention to the path that you’re walking gaps in your overseeding will become obvious when those seeds begin to grow. Show those seeds a little more encouragement by raking the ground it gives them a better chance at reaching their destination and establishing a temporary but routine schedule of watering. New growth can only be achieved and maintained with proper hydration, so for the first two to three weeks following overseeding the lawn in the fall, water on a regular basis.

Though overseeding may yield grasses that have a relatively short lifespan, that season of growth will be a season of love once you feel the satisfaction of gazing out over the green, master of a land in living color amidst the bleak and brown.

As you research the best methods of overseeding the lawn in the fall, give the knowledgeable staff at Executive Landscaping, Inc., a call today!