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Jan 22, 2021 6:11 PM CST
Name: Elizabeth
Middle Tennessee (Zone 7a)
What is a good grass/grass mix for just a plain old lawn? I recently cleared out a ton of privet and now have a long, semi-hilly area that's torn up and needs ground cover. Not sure if there is something better than others. I am in the country and am not looking for a suburban lawn LOL--just green stuff that holds up and holds the dirt down. Smiling
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Jan 22, 2021 6:16 PM CST
Name: Rj
Just S of the twin cities of M (Zone 4b)
Forum moderator Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Plant Identifier Garden Ideas: Level 1
As Yogi Berra said, “It's tough to make predictions, especially about the future.”
Avatar for RpR
Jan 22, 2021 6:44 PM CST
Name: Dr. Demento Jr.
Minnesota (Zone 3b)
pawsplus said:What is a good grass/grass mix for just a plain old lawn? I recently cleared out a ton of privet and now have a long, semi-hilly area that's torn up and needs ground cover. Not sure if there is something better than others. I am in the country and am not looking for a suburban lawn LOL--just green stuff that holds up and holds the dirt down. :-)

If you are honest about not wanting a mowed lawn, this, and many seed catalogs have -- similar blends -- is what you may like.
It can be mown but will look like a pasture rather than a golf course.

https://www.highcountrygardens...

I used one on my in town lawn , people asked what type grass it was , due some varieties of broad leaf grass, and I simply said, pasture.
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Jan 22, 2021 6:46 PM CST
Name: Elizabeth
Middle Tennessee (Zone 7a)
Oh, no, it gets mown! I just meant I'm not precious about it. You have to mow in the country or you get snakes. Smiling
Avatar for BrooklynStart
Jan 22, 2021 7:37 PM CST
Name: Steve
Port Orchard, WA (Zone 8b)
Pawsplus, if you input what city and USDA zone you are in, it would help in answering your question. Types of grasses are normally recommended based on winter temperature. Cool season grasses do well in Chicago, Boston, plus. Cool season grasses include Blue Grass, Perinnial Rye, and Fescues. Warm season grasses do well in Key West, and other areas that do not normally freeze. Warm season grasses include Bermuda Grass, St. Augustine and Zoysia.
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Jan 22, 2021 9:10 PM CST
Name: Dr. Demento Jr.
Minnesota (Zone 3b)
pawsplus said:Oh, no, it gets mown! I just meant I'm not precious about it. You have to mow in the country or you get snakes. :-)
Then you are looking for a suburban lawn grass.
Rye would be cheapest.
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Jan 23, 2021 8:05 AM CST
Name: Elizabeth
Middle Tennessee (Zone 7a)
I am a little South of Nashville, TN. Zone 7A I think? Rye. OK. I will ask about that. Smiling
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Jan 24, 2021 6:24 PM CST
Name: Elizabeth
Middle Tennessee (Zone 7a)
Do I need to cover the grass seed with straw? If so, do I then need to remove the straw at some point? If so, when?
Avatar for BrooklynStart
Jan 25, 2021 10:45 AM CST
Name: Steve
Port Orchard, WA (Zone 8b)
pawsplus, never used straw, always used cow manure.

I recommend using a Perinnial rye, or a combination of a Perinnial rye and a fescue. After leveling area, then do some compaction of the dirt if you want a somewhat smooth lawn, when GROUND TEMP gets above 60f put the seed down (grass seed will not germinate in ground temps below 50f), Lightly rake it into the soil (this ensures good contact with the soil), cover the seeds lightly with manure or straw (this will provide cover from the birds and help retain moisture), and the water to prevent drying out. Do not mow until grass is 3".
P.S. I start planting grass seed when day time temp is above 65f and night time temp is above 45f. Putting down seed earlier results in wondering why the seed has not germinated.
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Jan 25, 2021 5:27 PM CST
Name: Elizabeth
Middle Tennessee (Zone 7a)
I have horse manure (not composted) but not cow. It was 60F today but this time of year it goes up and down drastically. Do I need to wait to plant until it's consistently 60F? Around here (TN) it can be up to 85 in March but it can also freeze. It is impossible to predict! Not sure when to plant . . .
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Jan 25, 2021 5:51 PM CST
Name: Dr. Demento Jr.
Minnesota (Zone 3b)
Cover it with straw, it will decompose on its own .
How big of an area?
Avatar for BrooklynStart
Jan 25, 2021 8:49 PM CST
Name: Steve
Port Orchard, WA (Zone 8b)
pawsplus, I purchase composted manure by the yard and believe it assists in providing nutrients for the new grass. As RpR posted, straw will also decompose. It's decomposition will also add nutrients.

If you Google "ground temperature to germinate grass seed", you will see discussions on the affect of ground temp on germinating cool season grass seed, such as, Perennial rye and fescue; discussions on daytime temps and ground temps; and the effect of frost on grass seed germination. Most of the discussions are by major grass seed companies, others are also worthy ones for reading. During your reading, you will note that most, if not all, recommend ground temps of 50-65f, one discusses ground temps of 85f--I recommend ground temps of 60f, that is MY PREFERENCE.
Last edited by BrooklynStart Jan 25, 2021 8:53 PM Icon for preview
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Jan 26, 2021 5:46 AM CST
Name: Elizabeth
Middle Tennessee (Zone 7a)
RpR said:Cover it with straw, it will decompose on its own .
How big of an area?

15 x 100 I guess?
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Feb 4, 2021 6:27 AM CST
Name: Elizabeth
Middle Tennessee (Zone 7a)
Is there any reason, other than the fact that there may be weed seeds in it, not to use old hay instead of straw? I have a huge pile of hay my horses left in their hay nets over the last few years. It is under cover and there is nothing wrong with it, other than not being tasty enough LOL. I don't mind some weed seeds LOL--as long as it's green I'm good with it. Would that be OK to use to cover? Since I want to get rid of this pile anyway, I hate to go out and buy something when that hay is sitting right there!
Avatar for RpR
Feb 4, 2021 12:48 PM CST
Name: Dr. Demento Jr.
Minnesota (Zone 3b)
You can use it but do not put it on too heavy.
Hay mats down in a glob, straw does not.
I would use it.
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Feb 4, 2021 5:53 PM CST
Name: Elizabeth
Middle Tennessee (Zone 7a)
RpR said:You can use it but do not put it on too heavy.
Hay mats down in a glob, straw does not.
I would use it.


OK! I will just scatter it lightly. Smiling Thanks!
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Feb 9, 2021 11:28 PM CST
Name: Kimmy
Portland, Oregon (Zone 8b)
I've just got a yard of aged horse manure and spread it all over my small yard (1500 sqft). It's my first time putting horse manure in the lawn, and I wonder if it's too early? Should I wait until March?

It's been raining so much this year in Portland, and it's gonna snow this week too.
Avatar for RpR
Feb 10, 2021 7:13 PM CST
Name: Dr. Demento Jr.
Minnesota (Zone 3b)
Snow is good it will help the manure soak into the ground.
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