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Rhonda Ferree's ILRiverHort

Rhonda Ferree's Horticulture Blog

Rhonda's Top 10 Turf Tips


For pdf of factsheet that includes pictures, go to http://web.extension.illinois.edu/fmpt/downloads/47563.pdf

1. FERTILIZE at proper time, depending on grass quality.
  • If only do one application a year – Early September
  • Two applications a year – Early September and Early May
  • Three a year – Early September, Early May, and Mid-November
2. MOW using 1/3 rule - Never remove more than one third of the height in a single mowing
  • Don't Cut the Grass Too Short
  • Let the Clippings Remain on the Lawn
  • Keep the Mower Blade Sharp
3. WATER
  • Infrequently (weekly) and Deeply (one inch of water per time)
  • In early morning
  • Decide to water or not – don't bounce grass in and out of summer dormancy
4. RIGHT PLANT, RIGHT PLACE

Full Sun Areas

  • Kentucky bluegrass blend (3-5 cultivars)
  • Kentucky bluegrass blend/Perennial ryegrass
  • Tall fescue blend (high traffic areas or hot, dry sites)

Sun/Shade - Kentucky bluegrass/fine fescue blend

Deep Shade (in order of need for light)

  • Fine fescue blend (dry shade)
  • Full shade tolerant ground cover and perennials
  • Mulch to cover soil
5. WEEDS
  • Healthy turf means less weeds
  • Timing is key!
  • Know common weeds and how to control them
6. SEEDing tips
  • Timing is KEY
  • Prepare site and provide tender loving care until plants are big enough to survive
  • Overseed every 3-5 years with mix of resistant varieties
7. TO CULTIVATE OR NOT TO CULTIVATE?
  • Timing is KEY!
  • Detach only if thatch layer is greater than ½ inch
  • Core aerify every 3-5 years to reduce compaction
8. INSECTS and DISEASE

Grubs – Proper identification and Timing are KEY!

Diseases are weather dependent – use resistant varieties!

9. DECIDE ON QUALITY – The more you do, the more you'll have to do!

10. Have Fun and ENJOY!

Lawn Care Resources



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