Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Seed Germination

Wow you the fun continues! After the "summer from hell" due to late July, early August thunderstorms, now we are in drought mode. Unless you are watering a minimum of 2x daily, your seed  is NOT staying damp and isn't germinating. The seed is tested by the state to insure it is viable = will germinate when kept moist.  ITS NOT "BAD SEED"!  In fact, to my knowledge it is the highest rated, most expensive blend sold in Nashville! Please set to irrigation to water once before lunch and once in the afternoon. You will find out how good your irrigation coverage is based on where seed does not germinate. Here is the good news. Soil temps right now are what they normally are about in mid September.  The only requirement for fescue germination is water and warm soil temps. Therefore, we will be able to germinate fescue thru Thanksgiving! I am often asked, "what if we get a frost in October". It takes SEVERAL consecutive days of forst and near freezing temps to cool soil below germination temps. I welcome a freaking frost! We still have nutsedge and other summer weeds like spurge germinating daily due to high soil temps! Even the weeds are confused. Once we have finished all aeration /seeding, AND we have had at least 2 soaking rains, we will return to reseed as needed. In 20 years, we have had to reseed some yards in spring only 1 time. ZERO customers have ever been dissatisfied with our final seeding product. We ALWAYS make it right. Do we miss spots?Sometimes. Do we fix them? Always. The reason you see seed germination in shady spots 1st,is that the sun doesn't bake the seed dry in the afternoon. The sunny areas need rain to happen, or perfect irrigation timing and coverage. We guarantee all aeration /seed jobs every year. If it never rains again, thats  the only way we will fail to reestablish your lawn! IF YOU HAVE IRRIGATION AND HAVE WATERED AS INSTRUCTED AND IT HAS BEEN 30 DAYS SINCE WE SEEDED, THEN YOU CAN CALL FOR IMMEDIATE TOUCH UP. Otherwise, wait on rain or buy a sprinkler and please be patient. Thank you for your business!

Robert Stroud The Turf Doctor

Wednesday, October 5, 2016


Seeded this lawn 18 days ago. We treated with bifenthrin(granular) at time of seeding. Customer noticed grass not doing well in some spots. I picked up a handful of dead seedlings and grabbed 6 live baby armyworms! Bifenthrin effective as contact control, but the residual is not effective more than 2 weeks when watering daily for seed germination. I have NEVER seen multiple generations in same year. If we have seeded your lawn in 37205 or 37215 and you notice new grass areas quickly deteriorating, please contact us ASAP! This is major problem. Need a under 50 degree night to stop more generations. In 2017,we will have to change our program to stop this situation. A hot wet late summer year = armyworm invasion. If lawn on dry side, they won't hit you, but seed won't germinate. Very random, side by side yards we treat, 1 hit 1 not. Only difference is how wet they were when moths arrived in late August.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Armyworm theory, why me?

After looking at many yards and speaking with other turf managers in the area, we found 2 common denominators.
1.Moisture - having seen zero lawns that are dry an unirrigated that have been attacked. That tells me that when the moths fly here from "down yonder" , they lay their eggs near areas where they see succulent, soft turf tissue in wet warm soil to feed on. Would you rather eat a piece of cardboard or a juicy steak?

2.  Disease control - ALL yards that I have seen damaged so far, have been yards that had the healthiest turfgrass through late July. AKA, They had all been treated with disease control this summer and therefore had the healthiest foliage to feed on.

Conclusions - having a crappy unirrigated lawn full of weeds almost completely eliminates the risk armyworms will do damage to your lawn.

We have seen 1 case of armyworm damage in 37027. The other 11 were in 37215 or 37205. All lawns with damage have irrigation and at least 1 "overly wet" area in the lawns. My guess is these "overly wet areas" are irrigation leaks or poor drainage areas. My other guess is when the rains started coming in late July, most customers continued to irrigate on top of the rainfall.

Its just a theory......

Friday, September 2, 2016

Seed blend for 2016


If you would like more information on this year's seed blend, click link.

Monday, August 22, 2016

Army worms have arrived!

Great, armyworms have arrived. As if the weeds and nutsedge aren't enough hassle! They prefer to eat Bermuda, however, they will also eat fescue seedlings, once fall seeding completed. They will eat the whole lawn seedlings in 24 hours. What about the turf insect control you applied in June? Why doesn't that kill them? We use imacloprid and bifenthrin at that time. Imacloprid will give about a years control for grubs, because it is systemic. bifenthrin gives a no quick knockdown of surface feeding turf insects that are present at time of treatment, and will also knock out fleas, ticks, chiggers, etc. However, it doesn't kill insects NOT present. Fall armyworms fly up from the gulf coast areas as moths. They don't lay their eggs in the turf. They lay eggs on fences, poles, tree limbs, etc. They have to be controlled after they arrive. They don't show up every year. Please call if you notice areas (especially bermuda) that turn brown in about 1 day, so we can stop the armyworms from doing more damage. Please watch video on other post about armyworm damage. Thanks!

Robert Stroud The Turf Doctor

Armyworm. Damage


Robert Stroud The Turf Doctor

 click this one!  

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Like, its not fescue time in TN!

Its hot, yo. Its wet too. Everything but fescue will grow well over next 30 days. With soil temps over 90 and afternoon showers, it sets up for ugly yards. We are spraying weeds as quickly as we can, but they will keep coming until soil temps drop in September. What you can do to help, is to make sure you are not irrigating on top of this rain. Don't even attempt to keep your fescue looking like it did even a month ago. I would rather see drought stress than pithium fungus. Brown Patch disease control won't touch pithium. Its a death nail. Hot wet soil = pithium = dead until reseed. Hot dry soil = some brown, but not dead grass that will recover quickly when soil temps cool in September. Just remember, we are not happy seeing lawns tank either. But, I bet you don't see fescue in the jungle! Bare with us, we will get weeds cleaned up and ready for fall seeding, which is less than a month away. Thank you for your patience and business. If the weeds are driving you crazy and you want ASAP spray, just call office or email. We will move you up on service call list. Thanks 6154728245

Turf Doctor