Planning a New Lawn? – Sod verses Seed

Lawn Care -Types of Seed httpccesuffolk.orgassetsHorticulture-LeafletsThe-Homeowners-Lawn-Care-and-Water-Quality-Almanac.pdf

Cornell Lawn Grass Types

Are you looking to plant a new lawn? Here is some useful information to help you decide whether you want to go seed or sod. First of all there are several considerations when deciding.  Successful establishment of a lawn depends on temperature and moisture conditions and can be difficult in some regions.  The best time for seed germination is when the temperatures are cool at night and the daytime temperatures range in the 60’s-70’s.  Here on Long Island the best period for seeding is in early fall. There is a two month span between August 15th and October 15th which is ideal, supplying just the right conditions for germination.  Seeding in the spring can be done but there is the risk of crabgrass invasion before the lawn is able to become established and may result in an unsuccessful lawn or one that needs repair in the fall.  Ideally, a satisfying sod or seed lawn can be achieved by following some basic steps.

Advantages of Sod                                                                 Disadvantages of Sod 

  • provides an instant lawn                                                 . costs more
  • immediate erosion control                                               . some mixtures limited for shade
  • can be installed at any time when ground is not frozen
  • weed-free
  • reduced probability of establishment failure
  • established within 2-3 weeks

Advantages of Seed                                                               Disadvantages of Seed

  • less expensive                                                               . time lag before area is usable
  • wide variety selection                                                    . limited seeding periods
  • less time to install                                                          . erosion potential initially
  • ease of establishment in difficult areas                           . potential weeds & need to re-seed

Sod installation provides a mature lawn with less chance of failing and is established within 2-3 weeks. Seeding should not be considered in areas where erosion is high and will take longer to germinate but is lower in cost.  If it is important for you to have a lawn that can be used and enjoyed within a few weeks, then a sod lawn would be the way to go.  If you are willing to wait for your lawn to germinate and the timing is right (between August – October 15th on Long Island) then seed would be the choice.  In either case be sure to water your lawn frequently at regular intervals to get it established and practice proper lawn care afterwards.  Your developing lawn area should be kept moist but not wet for proper germination and watered deeply after maturity to encourage proper root growth.  A beautiful lawn can be established either way when following the proper procedures. Above is a chart showing the different seed mixtures available to you and their requirements with a link to Cornell’s Lawn Calender.

 As Always…Happy Gardening!

 Author:  Lee@Landscape Design By Lee, 2014, All Rights Reserved

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Four Season Fabulosity!

This is another fine post from Fine Foliage on foliage combinations for planters and some of these are my favorites so I had to share!

Fine Foliage

IMG_0585 I’m a lazy gardener – or at least I prefer to choose how much work to do rather than feeling overwhelmed by a ‘to do’ list. I suspect I’m not alone…………..

So here is a container for you that looks this good ALL YEAR! This would be a perfect combo on a shady porch where you can enjoy the lush foliage and see the seasonal changes. That’s right – even though all the plants here are evergreen they all change in some way during the year, either in color or because they have flowers. See the plant profiles below to see how they strut their stuff.

Clockwise from top;

Paprika coral bells(Heuchera) – spicy round leaves add a punch of heat to this combo. White flowers in spring combine with extra hot colors for a show stopping display. Zones 4-9

Silver dragon lily turf (Liriope spicata

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The Art of Layering

This is a wonderful post showing how combining foliage really is a form of art. I love your combinations and will be sharing this with my readers!

Fine Foliage

IMG_0486 Both Christina and I design container gardens as part of our businesses. We love what we do and we do something different every time! I was asked once if I ever got stuck for ideas and to be honest I never have. You see even if I find myself reaching for a few of my favorite plants (again) I know I’ll combine them in new ways. But there’s another design layer to consider; the context .

You see the container design is not an isolated entity but rather is part of a larger scene. Whether on a front porch or set within a vast garden, we have the opportunity to establish a relationship between the container garden and its surroundings.

That really came home to me as I watched noted photographer David Perry at a photo shoot in my garden recently. I had been asked to design ten containers for…

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