sun and shade on newly installed sod - Knowledgebase Question

Corona, Ca
Question by grneyecatt
October 28, 2009
7 months ago, we had sod installed and the sod nearest to the wall is not getting any sun exposure. The grass is thining out and turning yellow. We are watering and fertilizing through out the lawn as needed. Are we over watering? Is there any kind of seeding to tolorate shade that we can apply in that area that would blend with our tall fescue/bluegrass sod? Is our lawn savable in that area?

Answer from NGA
October 28, 2009


It is really difficult to grow turfgrass in the shade and the most shade tolerant grasses are the fescues so I'm not sure you'll ever be really successful with lawn in that particular area. Typically, though, when turf does not get enough sunshine it just grows thinner over the years. If your turf is turning yellow, I think it is getting too much water. Although the rest of your lawn is growing well with the amount of water it is getting, the yellowing area may not be draining quickly enough and the roots might be remaining saturated for long periods of time. You may want to slice through the turf and pull up the yellowing areas. Check to see how moist the soil is. If it seems soggy, remove about an inch of soil and replace it with an inch of builder's sand. This should help it drain a little better and the turf will grow into the sand without problem. If this doesn't solve the yellowing, you may want to consider putting something other than sod next to the wall. Decorative stones, bricks, etc. might be a better option. Good luck with your landscape.

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