Thursday, November 17, 2016

Still getting "need to reseed" calls

Folks, we are still getting calls to reseed areas that aren't germinating. EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THESE AREAS IS DRY. PERIOD. I have looked at them and ALL those spots are too dry for seed germination. If you have irrigation, it is likely that some areas don't get perfect coverage. That is very normal, as irrigation is a supplement to rainfall. Yards that have excellent coverage have EXCELLENT germination rates. If you have areas that are still dry, you need to get a hose and sprinkler at this point. Soil temps will allow germination for only about 10-14 more days, even with cold snap coming. Therefore, keeping soil surface damp during DAYLIGHT HOURS EVERY DAY is critical. If it gets too cold in mid December, the seed will lay there until about March, then most of it will germinate. We will delay preemergent in those cases where spots may need more seed in February. If you have paid your invoice for aeration and seeding, we will reseed areas that need it in the spring. If your seeding invoice has not been paid, by December 1st, you will not receive further services from The Turf Doctor. I have been in business for 20 years because we care and we make it right! However, we can't make it rain!!! If it never rains again, we won't have to worry about grass anyway. If you have not followed our aftercare watering instructions, please do so. It is my recommendation that if you have irrigation, you continue to water until we receive one soaking rain, HOPEFULLY THIS WEEKEND. Then winterize to protect your system. If we get nights below 30 before you winterize, there are 2 things you can do.
1. Wrap backflow with blankets
2. Set irrigation to run about 3-6 am. Moving water is hard to freeze!

Thank you for your business and please refrain from asking if we "have bad seed" That answer is NO, I promise.

Sincerely, Robert Stroud The Turf Doctor


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

Seriously?

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

http://www.pickseed.com/professional-turf/tech-sheets/tall-fescue.aspxll

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

https://youtu.be/7sL2s8XA2XI



Robert Stroud The Turf Doctor

 click this one!