Ask a Question forum: Growing grass on an Island

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jetburke
Apr 25, 2017 7:33 AM CST
Hello.... I take care of an Island in Long Island Sound and would like to try to grow some grass..
Their is no water on the island so the rain would be the only water it receives. The Island is also inhabited by Geese and many other birds. Is their any hearty grass that you could recommend ?

Thanks John
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Apr 25, 2017 9:23 AM CST
Welcome!

Look for some native grasses. They will be appropriate for you conditions and won't need special treatment such as watering. The geese will do the mowing.

The harder part will be getting the grass to take hold while being 'mowed' by a bunch of geese.
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[Last edited by DaisyI - Apr 25, 2017 9:24 AM (+)]
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Name: Sandi
Austin, Tx (Zone 8b)
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Bubbles
Apr 25, 2017 10:19 AM CST
Found this for suggestions of native grasses. Hope it helps.

http://www.seagrant.sunysb.edu...
Name: Philip Becker
Fresno California (Zone 8a)
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Philipwonel
Apr 25, 2017 10:31 AM CST
Hi there Jet 😁
Check into buffalo grass. See if will grow, locally. It is drought tolerant. Only grows 6 inches. And i belive is evergreen.
Butt ! the geese will probably eat it as it sprouts. So you would have to protect till established.
Hum???πŸ˜•??? Or plant lots, and lots of seed.
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Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
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dyzzypyxxy
Apr 25, 2017 12:53 PM CST
It might work more successfully if you just seed a small area at a time, then erect some sort of cage (chicken wire?) or other protection over it, to keep the geese away until it gets established. Then move on to another area, and plant under the cage again. Another advantage is you will immediately see if the geese are going to decimate the new grass as soon as you take off the cage, and you can try something else.

Also, when you decide what you're going to plant, wait until there is a good rain storm in the forecast and plant the seeds right before it rains. This way the seed will have a chance to sprout before being eaten up by the birds. Yes, you will need to plant probably twice as much seed as the label recommends just to allow for so much to be eaten up by the birds.

You might also consider the reasons why there isn't any grass on that island naturally. The balance of nature is a wonderful thing and if you do get an area of grass going, it might just attract more birds. The bird population will increase because there is a better food source, then once the birds eat up all the new grass, they will have to go in search of other food.
Elaine

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Name: Sally
central Maryland
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sallyg
Apr 26, 2017 8:21 AM CST
with that sandy soil, guessing a good dose of compost or other organic amendment will give it a better start.
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Name: greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
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greene
Apr 26, 2017 10:05 AM CST
Yes, please only use native grasses or native plants. Thank You!

dyzzypyxxy said:It might work more successfully if you just seed a small area at a time, then erect some sort of cage (chicken wire?) or other protection over it, to keep the geese away until it gets established. Then move on to another area, and plant under the cage again.


I agree with this idea. My friends make framework(s) of 2 x 4s or 2 x 6s with heavy wire fencing for strength and planted grass under the framework. For chickens, they can only eat what grows above the framework, but for the geese, yes, move the frame and replant each time.
Here is a link with photos and plans.
http://www.thegardencoop.com/b...

Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~"Leaf of Faith"

jetburke
Apr 27, 2017 9:15 AM CST
Hello.... Thank you all for fine suggestions. I`m building a rectangular box with screening on top to keep the Geese away from the seed. I`m researching to see what native seed are available and work best.

Thanks Again
John
Name: Lin
Florida Zone 9b, 10a

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plantladylin
Apr 27, 2017 9:53 AM CST
I agree, native grasses would be best; I found these article's when googling:
http://www.seagrant.sunysb.edu...

Here are links to our database for those listed in the article:
Little Bluestem (Schizachyrium scoparium)
Indian Grass (Sorghastrum nutans)
Switch Grass (Panicum virgatum)
Goldenrod (Solidago sempervirens)

Another article about native bamboo and grasses of the Hamptons: http://www.hamptonsgrassandbam...
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