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  Reply # 782177 15-Mar-2013 11:17
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Colonial Bentgrass (Browntop)




Couch 



T1 Creeping Bentgrass


Kikuyu


Ryegrass


Tall fescue


Fine fescue cut short at the front. Area at the back has had no mowing for over a year



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  Reply # 782181 15-Mar-2013 11:23
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Thanks KeriBoi, interesting and helpful. I like browntop best out of all of those, but I like my rye/fine fescue mix better than any of them.... I just picked it up at random at the store too!




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  Reply # 782209 15-Mar-2013 11:48
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is the tall fescue in the picture mixed with something else? there seems to be a lot of brown grass in there




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  Reply # 782210 15-Mar-2013 11:49
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Good luck. Nows the time to seed it if you are getting some rains.

What are your plans from here? Are you putting in any gypsum? What starter fertiliser are you using?



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  Reply # 782214 15-Mar-2013 11:53
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keriboi: Good luck. Nows the time to seed it if you are getting some rains.

What are your plans from here? Are you putting in any gypsum? What starter fertiliser are you using?


Once I decide on the seed type, or woolgro, or hydroseed! Seed is cheapest, and may be easiest as I do it all myself. The only concern is slightly slower growth, and birds having a go at it. I'd just rake the lawn, throw the seed down, and then try to cover as much as possible with a thin layer of soil - or add a little more soil.

I put gypsum on a few months ago, and I've put organic fertiliser and commercial fertilizer on as well. It's all still there, in the top 5cm of soil. Happy to hear other recommendations too, what fertilizer to use etc. If I go hydroseed or woolgro then I don't have to bother with it.




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  Reply # 794981 8-Apr-2013 13:35
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How did you get on? any photos?



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  Reply # 794999 8-Apr-2013 13:48
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I had landscapers tear up the old lawn with a rotary hoe and level it. It took them two six hour days for 160 square meters. Then there was a water ban, so I waited for ages before I did anything.

I ruled out hydroseed as the local guy wouldn't do the mix I wanted. I didn't use woolgro as the stockists on their website don't actually carry it and no-one called me back. I ended up planting a fine turf rye/fescue blend a week ago. Right now it looks like dirt with seed in it, no sprouts yet, but it's been cold, hot, wet, dry, and I can't water it other than with a bit of left over water from the house. Hoping for some sprouting in the next week or so.

The square meter I planted in two different types of seed 2-3 weeks ago are coming away well, two inches high. The uncoated seed really did a lot better than the coated seed, better germinate rate, grew faster, etc. It looks identical (different brands) just bigger.




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  Reply # 975047 27-Jan-2014 13:17
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Last year we ran out of Summer to get the landscaping done, but December we finally did it. I did decide to go with WoolGro, because it turned out finae fescue is not suitable for Auckland (too humid), I was happy with the company (after they finally made contact), and I did not have the time/energy to do this myself as well.

The installers were great, although the soil was not as level as I wanted it but we can screed it a little bit every year. They did spend almost a week on the 160 m2 job. We got them to also install sprayers. It was a bit overpriced (in NZ the retail price for Hunter is ridiculous compared to eBay), but again it was one less thing for me to do.

Watering was set for 4 times a day, 10 minutes at a time. Sprayers are installed further apart than recommended so there were a few spots I needed to water by hand mainly because wind channelled through our driveway gate while the other sides are sheltered by fencing. Once established, it is not an issue that sprayers are far apart.

It took 10 days for the first grass to appear, as expected. After 2 weeks we had a reasonable mat and the guys came around to fill in gaps. After 4 weeks it was tall enough for the first cut. A week later I did another cut, this time twice so that it is cut in 2 directions which seems to work well on this grass. Then we went camping for 7 days, and on our return yesterday the grass doubled in length!

Last week the installers came around (they visit about once or twice a week) and left a note to say they will spray the few weeds in 2-3 weeks. The only weeds we are getting are broad leave hard wood weeds (actually seeds from a neighbour's tree). There are virtually no fine weeds.

We paid $3240 for 160 m2 plus an extra 15 m2 roll that I've installed myself on the berm (mostly grew well, but not as well because watered only once a day). Half the price was for seed mat plus install, the rest was irrigation, extra soil, rotary hoe hire to break up hard soil, extra labour.

Fescue grass is genetically green, so my hands turn green from the sap when I mow it. But it washes off. Advantage is it does not turn brown at all, the grass is always deep green and just wither away if not watered. The roots are very deep though, there are no runners (so little edging to do), and once established it forms a dense mat that suppressed weeds. There are also certain herbicides that does not affect fescue, so weed control is not hard. It does need annual top-up of nitrogen, weekly mowing of the tips rather than cutting back hard, and no mulch cuts (due to nitrogen starvation).

It is now 6 1/2 weeks after planting, photos taken after cutting.





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  Reply # 975179 27-Jan-2014 15:42
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That looks much nicer than mine, which I did from seed. I have all sorts of weeds in mine - broad leaf, little plants, rimutaka weed, daisies, random clumpy grass, etc, etc. It's taken a heck of a lot of my time to prepare, lay, and maintain it. Recently I've spent a full day digging out weeds, digging out ugly clumpy grass, putting in a bit more soil and new seed. It's not bad, better than any other lawn on my street but I probably put in as much effort as everyone else combined. Some areas grow faster than others, so it looks patchy within a few days of mowing. It's not a thick rich carpet of grass, there are gaps, which I try to fill by raking through and throwing more seed around.

Overall I think your way was better, with a much better result. If I can manage that it will take me 2-3 years. My way may be cheap, probably $400 worth of grass seed, $150 worth of hoses and timers, $50 extra seed a year to try to get it up to scratch. Mine's not bad, just not great like that.




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  Reply # 975246 27-Jan-2014 17:14
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That's the comments I've read from a few people that used WoolGro. From seed is not bad, but WoolGro matting is so much better. You can buy the mat and install yourself, it is about $100 per 15 m2 roll, it is the prepwork that is hard. Growth rate is still different in areas, but virtually everywhere is good growth. I'd say the lots of water also helped. Although the water bill is almost double what it normally is (with 2 teenagers!) water is still relatively cheap.




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  Reply # 975359 27-Jan-2014 20:25
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I planted not long before the drought last year, so maybe water was an issue. I have two double tap timers and four sprinklers, so I have the capability for decent watering.




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  Reply # 986534 13-Feb-2014 07:12
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What's the best tool to deal with edges? The grass grows over them and I'd like to stop them. I use a line trimmer but it's not ideal.

I expect someone's going to say something like "an edger". My Dad had one when I was growing up. Is a simple manual tool like that still the best option?




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  Reply # 986798 13-Feb-2014 15:38
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I'm also after a solution, was going to post the question as well ;-). Initial quick look suggested a tool that looks like an electric sheep shear. You get them battery powered for grass and shrubs, but I'm looking for someone with experience. Fortunately I have fescue so no runners to trim, just trim where the mower can't reach which is against a fence so the line trimmer damages the fence and wastes line.




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