Spring fever is hitting, though we caution against seeding at this time

We received an email asking if there was anyway we could seed yet this spring/summer – just wanted to share:

Thank you for writing us, unfortunately we have finished our aeration/seedings for spring about 1 month ago and only performed about three seeding jobs. We anticipate this summer to be another hot, dry season – if it is, it will create a situation for new turf that will make it difficult to establish, even if proper maintenance is followed (new turf requires multiple watering’s a day, ideally). Secondly, at this time of year you may want to get a crabgrass pre-emergent (of perhaps you already received one), the pre-emergent is designed to halt the germination process of crabgrass seedlings, though it will also stop turf seedlings from germination too – so if you seed soon, you can not have crabgrass prevention applied.

With all that being said, there are always solutions to problems – though the timing of the year may make it a little more work – but not impossible:
If your whole lawn is thin and you wanted an aeration / seeding on the whole lawn: You could rent an aerator and purchase seed. For optimal results, water 2-3 times a day for about 5-10 minutes – morning, noon & late afternoon – the goal is to keep the surface of the soil moist. If you are watering your lawn, try to also make sure that you get a deep watering in for your existing turf to aid root development (about 20 – 30 minute watering in the morning 2-3 times a week – though not daily). The watering is only needed if natural conditions do not provide it. A seed starter should be applied to aid germination rate and root development.
If you have just a couple of bare spots that are not too large: I would recommend getting the pre-emergent crabgrass control to get a barrier down and halt that germination process. After the pre-emergent has been applied, you can add a layer of top soil (about 1” thick) to the bare areas and seed on top of that. Follow the watering instructions mentioned above. The layer of top soil will create a barrier between the pre-emergent crabgrass control and your new seedlings so they are allowed to germinate. A follow up with starter fertilizer about 3 – 4 weeks after you seed will help too.

Why fall for seeding?
Soil temperatures are at the germination rate
Natural conditions are usually moist enough that the customer doesn’t need to keep up on the watering daily
Cooler weather so there is less evaporation & stress on the lawn
Pre-emergent crabgrass control is seldom applied during fall, unless you need to target a winter annual.I have a potential customer

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