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Overseeding Your Arizona Lawn

Sep 27, 2019

close-up green grass with roots‘Tis the season to overseed your lawn to get it lush and lovely for the winter months! Here is a helpful guide for what to look for and what to do when overseeding your lawn this year! Perennial ryegrasses are a very popular choice in Arizona, but not all perennial ryegrass seeds are the same. In fact, there tends to be a lot of variation, such as the amount of weed seed it contains and Poa annua content. They can also vary in their resistance to disease.

Advantages of Perennial Ryegrass:

– Fast germination
– Lush green color and soft leaf texture
– Newer varieties have greatly improved disease resistance

Reading the seed tag or analysis label on the bag often provides helpful information about the quality of the seed you’re looking at! Also, If you have shade covered areas, a good alternative to the ryegrass is Tall Fescue seed as it grows well in the shade.

Close up green grass field in nature, Leaf grass

Attributes to note when purchasing:
  • Specific seed type.
  • Percentage of type by weight.
  • Percentage of other agricultural/turfgrass seeds, as higher levels of these can cause issues.
  • Percentage of weed seed contained in the product.
  • Seed germination percentage under ideal lab conditions.
  • Non-seed materials, such as stems and soil.
  • The name/rate of noxious weed seeds contained per pound of seed. Weed types listed may vary by state.
  • When shopping for seed, it’s best to compare the product tags to ensure you aren’t sacrificing quality for price. It’s very likely that a cheaper priced product will contain higher weed seed rates or other unwanted seed content.

    green grass, fresh cut lawn

    A few weeks before you start your overseeding, follow these steps to increase your chances for success:
  • 3 to 4 weeks before overseeding it is best to stop fertilizing, this will help minimize the growth of Bermudagrass.
  • 2 weeks before overseeding you will want to reduce irrigation by about 30% and raise your mowing height a bit, but not so much that you shock your current grass.
  • 1 to 3 days prior to overseeding stop watering altogether.

  • Overseeding Steps:
  • Cut the bermuda grass low 3/4 inch low.
  • Lightly rake
  • Apply your seed
  • Cover lightly with a layer off mulch.
  • Apply a starter fertilizer either a week after or when you plant the seed.
  • Water lightly 2-4 times a day; 6-9 days. This is so the seeds do not dry up.
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