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new grass

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From: Kathy Orazio
Lincoln City, OR
I had to replace a retaining wall and had new grass seeds put into areas that had to be dug up. The new grass was put in about 3 weeks ago just prior to the rain starting in. The seeded area was then applied fertilizer ahd lime. The yard does hold water and can actually become quite soaked when it rains alot but the rain has mostly been on and off so far. The grass is now starting to come up about an inch in some areas but most areas don't have grass yet. Any ideas ? Thank You.

Extension Message
From: Douglas B. Gucker
Extension Educator, Local Food Systems and Small Farms
DeWitt/Macon/Piatt Unit
Hi, Kathy:

Sorry for the delay in my reply, but I work part-time.

As to your question about the spotty emergence of the new grass, the problem maybe the "on and off" rains. Grass seedings need to be kept evenly moist for about a week to insure uniform emergence. A new seeding of grass can require some babysitting that first week or so, if it does not rain frequently and keep the soil moist. Otherwise, you need to water (irrigate) the seeding everyday till the soil surface "glistens".

You might want to check this publication from Oregon State University:

Another issue would be just the opposite of the above scenario - too much rain too quickly and the grass seed is washed to the lower areas. This would cause a spotty appearance as well.

Those are the two most likely scenarios for your spotty emergence problem. I hope this is helpful to you-

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