Question: I have an established Bermuda grass
lawn; I would like to add Rye grass. I don't know if it's too
late or too early to do this also what type of Rye grass do you
recommend for use in our area?
ANSWER: For a home lawn, I would recommend 5
to 7 pounds of
perennial ryegrass seed per 1,000 sq.ft. and for annual ryegrass
recommend 10 to 12 pounds of seed per 1,000 sq.ft.. Late October
early November is still the best time to overseed.
I would recommend aerifying the lawn 30 days prior to overseeding
possible. For some homeowners, this is not possible or hard to
Right before you overseed, scalp the lawn down as low as your
go. This will help get the seed down in contact with the soil,
very important. Vertical mowing will help provide better seed
contact, but again this is not easy for homeoweners to do.
Apply a starter fertilizer when you apply the seed. As soon as
is planted, start watering. Water lightly a couple of times per
until the seed start to germinate and grow.
James McAfee, Turfgrass Specialist for the Texas Cooperative
OVERSEEDING A GOLF COURSE
Question: Where can I find out about the best way to care for
Rye Grass on putting greens? I belong to a golf club in the Bexar
County area and every year it seems that we don't get much out
of planting Rye for the winter. Specifically, how should the grass
be cut? We seem to have a high density of rye in the holes that
were put in the green for aeration. However, where there is no
hole, our Rye is not there.
Answer: Outlined below are the keys to achieving a successful
overseeding with ryegrass on golf greens. First, aerify the greens
a month prior to overseeding. The reason yousee the ryegrass coming
up in the holes is because you are probably overseeding too soon
after aerifying and the holes have not filled in yet. Second,
the ideal time to overseed in the San Antonio area will be around
mid-October to early November. Overseeding too soon will increase
the chance of disease problems and overseeding too late will increase
the chance of the young ryegrass seedlings being killed by an
early freeze. The greens should be vertically mowed right before
you overseed to insure good seed-to-soil contact. Apply the perennial
ryegrass on the greens at 12 to 15 pounds of seed per 1,000 sq.ft.
I would also apply a starter fertilizer at the time of overseeding
such as a 10-10-10 or 10-20-10. Topdressing lightly with a good
quality sand at 1/8 to 1/4 of an inch will also be beneficial.
Then drag the sand and seed into the green with a screen drag
mat. Once you start watering the greens after overseeding, continue
to maintain moisture around the seed until they have started to
germinate and grow. Improper watering following overseeding is
one of the major reasons for poor establishment. Once the seed
reach the desired mowing height, start mowing the greens. The
perennial ryegrass should be mowed around 3/16 to 1/4 of an inch
initially. Once fully established, you can slightly lower the
cutting height if you want to increase ball roll speed. It is
very important to sharpen the mower blades before you start mowing
the overseeded greens. A dull reel mower blade will pull the young
ryegrass seedlings out of the ground. This is also a very common
problem. If you follow these steps, your overseeding should be
successful. James McAfee Extension Turfgrass Specialist