There seems to be something in human nature that attracts us to green grass. Ancient hunter-gatherers were attracted to abundant game on the vast grassy prairies, and the early herdsmen searched out the greenest valleys for their livestock. Even the 23rd Psalm associates a sense of peace, protection and prosperity with lying down in green pastures. While most of us no longer hunt or farm, other than for recreation, we are still instinctually drawn to green grass as it cools our environment, filters out pollution, and feels good between our toes.
Keeping a thick, healthy lawn is a great way to have a safer, natural surface for dogs and kids to play on, as well as reducing weeds and increasing curb appeal. Understanding the basics of when, and how, grass grows, repairs and repopulates itself is critical to keeping your lawn healthy. If we can mimic nature, we can use the grasses’ natural characteristics to maintain the lawn we desire more easily.
Most Kansas City area grasses naturally reproduce through seed production. If left uncut, grass plants come out of winter dormancy, using the rainy spring weather, and stored up energy, to quickly push up a seed head. After this seed head matures in mid-summer, the seeds are then battered by late summer thunderstorms, knocking them to the ground, where they sprout in the warm moist soil. The young plants focus on growing deep roots and storing up nutrients to help get through the winter, and to be strong enough to survive the heat that will be coming the next summer. Since we mow our lawns, the seeding cycle is interrupted, and we don’t get the advantage of young, vigorous plants, or the genetic diversity of cross-pollination. That’s why we encourage planting HeatWave™ turf-type fescue blend, or BlueWave™ Kentucky bluegrass blend, in the late summer and early fall. Grasses are genetically predisposed to sprout and establish quickly because of the warm soil, and by supplementing the fall rains. Frequent irrigation cycles and adding Loveland Renovator turf fertilizer your new grass will establish faster now, than any other time of the year.
Some grasses also spread with runners called rhizomes. These runners are sent out by the parent plant when it senses a bare spot nearby. BlueWave™ Kentucky bluegrass blend has these runners and will create the prettiest lawn in Kansas City. The varieties selected for BlueWave™ have a deep blue-green color, and fine texture, which make it very desirable for those seeking a distinctively luxurious lawn. Do not dismiss bluegrass as being too ‘delicate’ in the heat of the summer. Decades of plant breeding and selection have created varieties that are more vigorous, heat and drought tolerant, disease resistant and visually appealing. Because of its spreading capability, and the fact that there are about 2 million seeds in every pound (10 times more than a pound of fescue), BlueWave™ Kentucky bluegrass blend is one of the most economical grasses to grow in our area.
In areas that expect a lot of traffic, like sports fields, and lawns with dogs and kids, we like to mix the BlueWave™ with sports turf ryegrass, creating Estate Mix™. This mix gives you all the benefits of the runners in BlueWave™, and adds the quick starting, dark green, and fine texture of the same sports turf ryegrasses that are used to repair golf course fairways and athletic fields.
Come on down to the Grass Pad, and ask Uncle about upgrading your lawn with BlueWave™ Kentucky bluegrass blend along with his Fall Renovator Program. It’s not too late! Yesterday was better than today, but today is better than tomorrow!