Overseeding Lawns in Anthem Parkside
It’s that time of year again here in Anthem Parkside – time to overseed for that beautiful lawn we Phoenicians like to show off while the rest of the country is showing how buried there cars are in the snow drifts. I know many of you have seen the landscapers traversing our local fields recently in preparation of this process. Our clients who are new to the area, especially those from colder climates, are not too adept at overseeding their lawns and often call with questions.
Well, we have both warm and cool growing seasons here in the NW Phoenix area, with two distinct styles of grass growing in each. Because we have yearly temperatures swings from 27-degree winter nights to 117-degree summer days, there is not just one grass type that will remain green and healthy all year long. Instead, Anthem gardeners who choose to have year-round green grass must overseed their warm-weather bermuda grass in fall with cool-season ryegrass.
The Anthem HOA does mandate that if you have front yard lawns, they must be overseeded for the winter in an effort to keep our homes looking nice. The bermuda grass will continue to grow and stay green so long as overnight lows to not dip down near frost levels and you are feeding it regularly – perhaps even into the Thanksgiving season. However, I usually follow the lead of those more intelligent that me. So when I see the Anthem Parkside professional landscapers beginning their overseeding season – even those greenskeepers at the Anthem Country Club – I usually tell myself that it’s time to get ready myself.
- Overseed mature lawns between late September and mid-November, when nighttime temperatures drop below 60 degrees.
- 4 to 6 weeks prior to overseeding, stop fertilizing your bermuda grass.
- Cut irrigation frequency in half a few weeks before your overseeding date.
- Stop mowing your lawn one week before overseeding.
- The day of overseeding, mow bermuda-grass as low as your mower will go—preferably down to one-half inch high—and remove the clippings from the lawn.
- Spread ryegrass seed in amounts specified on seed packaging.
- Rake in the seed to promote good soil contact.
- Cover seed with one-quarter inch of weed-free forest mulch, composted steer manure or grass clippings. Top-dressing helps maintain moisture and moderate soil temperatures needed to promote seed germination, and deters birds from feeding on the seed. (and they will show up like no one’s business!)
- Water 3 to 4 times daily for 5 to 10 minutes until seeds germinate in 5 to 7 days.
photo courtesy of Traci Sershen
- After ryegrass begins to establish, around the third or fourth week, gradually start reducing irrigation to every 3 to 7 days in November and December, then every 7 to 14 days for the remainder of the season, depending on local conditions and rainfall. For healthy ryegrass, irrigation must run for longer periods than the original 5 to 10 minutes, allowing water to soak 4 to 6 inches deep with each irrigation.
- Do not mow until ryegrass grows 2 inches tall; then mow lightly, no lower than 1 ½ inches tall. After ryegrass establishes (each plant has 3 or 4 shoots), it can be mowed to a lower height, if desired.
- Do not fertilize until after the first mowing. Feed monthly with a complete fertilizer.
If this all sounds like to much work for you to deal with – many do! – just check in with us, and we will be happy to give you a few key referrals to gardeners with know and love who would be happy to assist. Are you interested in moving to Anthem Parkside? We can help with that, too!
Oh, and then there’s the crowd, like us, who just isn’t into putting that much time, money and effort into having a nice lawn. If this is you, then you, too, are a perfect candidate for artificial turf products… but that is a whole other topic for discussion. Enjoy your beautiful lawns Anthem Parkside!