xt76ww76vc1t https://exploreuk.uky.edu/dips/xt76ww76vc1t/data/mets.xml   Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station. 1932 journals kaes_circulars_256 English Lexington : The Service, 1913-1958. Contact the Special Collections Research Center for information regarding rights and use of this collection. Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station Circular (Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station) n. 256 text Circular (Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station) n. 256 1932 2014 true xt76ww76vc1t section xt76ww76vc1t ..‘,  V
  University of Kentucky—College of Agriculture
  THOMAS P. COOPER, Dean and Director
 n` Circular N0. 256 March, 1932
if  Published in connection with the agricultural extension work carried i V 
 I On by cooperation of the College of Agriculture, University of Kentucky,
  with the U. S. Department of Agriculture, and distributed in furtherance I
.`  of the work provided for in the Act of Congress of May 8. 1914.
r  A good lawn, well kept, is indispensable to attractive
I home surroundings. If the lawn is rough, spotted, weedy
.  and poorly kept the home will never appear attractive, re-
 - gardless of the amount of money expended in the planting
  of trees and shrubs. A fine lawn enhances the beauty of
  the whole landscape and partly makes up for a lack of
 , shrubs and trees. In fact, the home should represent a
  picture with the lawn as background, and the plantings the
  frame. The lawn is such a large part of the picture, that
; it should be kept in perfect condition.
I  The making and maintaining of a good lawn requires
 r much work. Difficulties will be encountered, such as
  weeds, grass dying in spots, trees taking too much moisture
 A and plant food as well as injuring the grass by shading.
_ These and other problems must be dealt with if one is to
3 have the type of lawn so much desired. On account of the
I hot, frequently dry summers, and open, snowless winters
  in Kentucky the maintenance of a good lawn is more diffi-
f cult than in some other sections of the United States. How-
ever, in spite of these conditions it is possible, in most sec-
 . tions of Kentucky, to have a good-looking lawn.
A In making a lawn on a new area one should first pro—
 . vide good drainage. Wet soil may be caused by a subsoil
 E that does not drain well, or by surface water from the sur-

 4 ’ 
2 Kentucky Extension Circular N0. 256  ‘ _
rounding area. Tile drainage may be necessary, or the  
grade may be changed to correct surface drainage. __’  _ user
The next step is the actual preparation of the soil  y HOU
Deep, fertile, moisture-holding soil is needed. Cover the  ¤ mal
entire area with a heavy application of well-rotted barn-  f is 3
yard manure, and plow to a depth of eight inches. Harrow   Caid
the plowed surface until it is reasonably smooth. Apply   the
1,000 pounds of superphosphate, 1,000 pounds of hydrated _.  $1*0
lime, and 500 pounds of muriate of potash, to the acre, · S0]
Disk and harrow the ground until these are thoroly in-  ; mk
corporated in the soil. This application will supply the -
phosphorus and potash needed for many years. It is much   MSS
more effective to supply these in quantity before the lawn  we me;
is established than to add them after the area is covered  ‘ tm.
with sod. Top-dress the soil with another application of  · hm
well-rotted manure, preferably cow manure. After this a · we
good seed-bed should be prepared by thoro harrowing and V bm
rolling. Keep in mind that the seed—bed is being prepared
to last a long time, therefore the preparation should be  y
thoro before any grass seed is sown. The spring or fall Cm
is the time to make these preparations. K ma
· no
Kentucky Bluegrass (Pod. ])7'CL»t€’H,Sll8). This is the most  ·  
important grass for Kentucky lawns. It has a good, deep  Q Sn
color, is spreading and permanent, has fine blades and tends  ‘ A
to crowd out many other grasses when grown under favor- ' _
able conditions. It takes two or three years to spread sui- 1  D1
ficientlv to make a good, close turf. On account of this il ~ tm
is often desirable to sow a rapid-growing grass with tlw J ab
Bluegrass to cover the ground and check weed gi·o\vlli  I HO
Redtop is recommended for this purpose.  ;° du
Rcdtop (Agrostis paliustrts). Tho it belongs to a dit-  . SO_
ferent group from Bluegrass, Redtop is used with Blue-  _ g]
grass because it blends well and is rapid-growing. lt i>  p
adapted to a wide range of soil conditions and like the otlid  · Tl
bent grasses develops quickly and is at its best during lair T (ld
summer and fall. g Sli
White Clover (Trrifolium rcpens). White clover l> ‘  

 _ . i <
  l The Lawn 3
{   used often with grass mixtures. Some like it, others do
 l not, so its use becomes a matter of choice. White clover
i   makes most of its growth below the two-inch level, which
V   is about the level grass is mowed. It is an aid to making a _
    Carpet-like, sweet-scented turf. In using white clover on
V  — the lawn the seed should be sown only in the spring. It
Ll 3 should not be sown in mixture because the clover seeds are l 
, . so heavy and smooth that it is difficult to get an even dis- I
  i tribution when sown in mixtures of Bluegrass and Redtop. “
*9  _ The Fescues (Festucui). This group of grasses is of i
ll ; less importance for lawns than any of those previously
ll 1 mentioned. The fescues are used in many lawn seed mix-
fil  I tures because they give a quick effect the first year. They
Jl   have some use in places that are partially shaded. How-
3 ‘ ever, the hot, dry summers of Kentucky cause them to turn
ld  » brown; therefore they are not recommended.
ii ` Bermuda Grass (Cynodoh daetyloni). Bermuda is the
RH = creeping bent grass of the south, producing a quick, dense
L turf. There are parts of Kentucky where Bluegrass does
Q not do well. For such regions Bermuda makes a good sub-
stitute. The brown color of Bermuda during the winter
1, makes it less desirable than Bluegrass; however, it does
Dsl I produce a desirable, carpet-like turf. It is recommended
E?  g only when Bluegrass fails.
gl;  ’ It is difficult to recommend a grass for shady places.
ui Q Different degrees of shade must be taken into considera-
mt V· tion. A place may be somewhat shaded and still be suit-
W,  s able for growing grass, or the shade may be so dense that
fm  j_ no grass could be made to grow. The variety of trees pro-
 f= ducing the shade is a determining factor. Water maple, or
(M - Soft maple, trees make conditions very unfavorable for
hw-   grass.
tis  QA Rough Bluegrass or Meadow Grass (Pod 1°rz`riaZ1`s).
[hay  E This is commonly called bird-grass. It thrives best in
late i _ (lamp, shady places and is used often in grass mixtures for
  shady places. In the open it is injured by the sun, but its
1. i,  ~ lOWᤤl`O\VlHg stems and bright green leaves make it useful
 ` in places where soil and shade are unsatisfactory for

4 Kemiuelcy Extension Circular N0. 256  Q
other grasses. Probably meadow grass is the best grass  Q Whit
for shady locations. T  acm:
Wood Bluegrass (Pod nemordlis). This flat, low- ? 
growing, non-creeping grass is added sometimes to grass ` _
_ _ _ _  h gaid
mixtures for shady locations. It is not used so much as _ Weig
Meadow Grass. s use
Regardless of the kind of grass seed to be used, one  » cent<
thing should always be kept in mind-—louy the best seed } Go o
obtainable. Good seed is by far the cheapest. '
Seeding. The seed may be sown in the spring during may
February, March and April, or in the fall during Septem- i Ohhh
ber and October. When the ground is prepared for spring  ‘ Crop
sowing it should be seeded as soon as possible. Early seed- { Of tl-
ing enables the young grass to make vigorous growth be- i \Vh€
fore the extreme heat of midsummer. The fall is an ideal  _ Shou
time for seeding in Kentucky. The cool weather and fall , 1-had
rains are excellent for starting grass seed, especially Blue- _ nurs
grass. In Kentucky the lawn grass seed usually is sown in  T whe
the spring. Probably better results would be had by fall  p Cmp
sowing. If the young grass is killed during the winter,  · l`€l1ll
reseeding should be done in February or March.  . . the y
The seed may be broadcasted by hand or, if a large {
area is to be sown, a small seed sower may be used. Divide  h for
the seed into two equal parts, sowing one part in one di- 1  does
rection, and the other at right angles. This gives an even · the;
distribution of seed. As seed is light in weight, select a 1 abot
time when there is little or no wind. L thicl
Seed Mixture. A mixture of Kentucky Bluegrass and  - Lay
Redtop, is recommended for Kentucky lawns.  0 Elle
Kentucky Bluegrass .... 4 parts by weight, , DES?
Redtop ............................ 1 part by weight. I TONE
If Meadow Grass or Wood Bluegrass is to be used for p thor
shady places, add one part by weight of this mixture. B  dry,
Amount of Seed to Sow. The grass-seed mixture ` lack
- should be sown at the rate of 45 to 60 pounds per acre. For  ·
small areas sow three-fourths of a pound, or one quart, of   case
seed to 200 square feet, or a square 14.2 feet on a side, The  . ban

 I ‘
 i- The Lawn 5
s  it white clover should be sown at the rate of four pounds per
 t acre, or three ounces to 200 square feet.
·   After the seed is sown rake it in very lightly using a
5   garden rake. Then press it into the soil with a roller
5 I weighing at least 250 pounds. If a roller is not available
  use a tamper made by placing an upright handle in the ' 
e   center of a piece of two-inch plank about 10 by 18 inches. c
sl if  Go over the area at least twice with roller or tamper. A
Nurse Crops. If the area to be seeded is sloping it I
E  ‘ may be advisable to use a nurse crop to prevent washing. Y
1-  5 Oats, rye and barley are used for the nurse or protection
E  f crop for the young grass. A very light seeding of any
l-   of these may be made at the time of sowing the grass seed.
3-   When the area is comparatively level the grass mixture A
ll _ should be sown alone and the redtop, which germinates
ll , readily, will furnish shade for the young Bluegrass. When
e- V nurse crops are sown use care in cutting them, especially
in  — when grass mixture has been sown in the spring. If nurse
lll  j crops are allowed to grow and furnish shade, when cut and
ir, j removed, the hot summer sun often does much damage to
 . . the young grass.
ge   Sodding. Prepare the soil for sodding the same as
de  p for seeding. Use care in procuring sod, making sure it
li- g does not contain undesirable grasses and weeds. After
en  ‘ the ground has been prepared the sod should be cut in strips
a   about three feet long, one foot wide, and at least two inches
_ thick. Roll the strips before transporting to the lawn.
nd  e Lay these strips of sod as soon after cutting as possible. Fit
 V- the edges together closely, and beat the sod down with a
 · tamper or the back of a spade. Do this as the strips are
put down. As soon as a section is finished it should be
V rolled or again beat down. Follow this with watering,
for  V thoroly soaking the sod until it is wet thru. As soon as
 · dry, roll or beat down again. Do not allow it to suffer for
He _ g lack of water.
For   Sodding is more expensive than seeding, but in some
of Cases it may be desirable. For example, on terraces or
The ·_ banks; also it is possible to do sodding in the middle of the

6 Kentucky Extension Criirculcor No. 256 e
th grov
summer when it would not be feasible to sow seed. Sod- J,  help
ding may be used to advantage to cover bare spots.  ` it is
Core ofthe New Lawn. After the lawn has been  ° W€€*
seeded or sodded it needs care and attention. The soil must _‘ disa
be fed, the surface rolled, the weeds kept out, and the grass · the
kept clipped.  — am
Fertilizring. If the soil has been prepared and fer-  ·
tilized as directed on page 2 the application of nitrogen  t Btw
will be the principal fertilizer needed. There are a num. ; cnt
ber of fertilizers that may be used to supply this nitrogen.  —_ msi
Well-rotted cow manure applied in December is excellent,   at 3
Tobacco stalks placed on the lawn late in December or early ` g"R*
in January and left there until March furnish a liberal t Sim
amount of nitrogen in a form readily available for the ’ ttm
grass. Sulfate of ammonia or nitrate of soda may be ap- A, Qf Q
plied in the early fall or late winter, at the rate of 150  . . mg
pounds per acre, or one pound per square rod. Select a  I div
time just before a rain to apply sulfate of ammonia or gm
nitrate of soda, as its use in dry weather may injure some Um
of the grass by burning. Sulfate of ammonia or nitrate kid;
of soda may be mixed with sand or dry soil to prevent  i pm-
burning and to assure an even distribution. Mix one pound T,  mu
with one gallon of sand or dry soil. Another application _  rm
may be given in June, if the grass fails to make a rapid _ SO2
growth. Use care in applying this in order to prevent  Q
burning. ,
Rolling. The lawn should be rolled several times each  ‘
year. This applies to both new and old established lawns. » sue
Begin in the spring as soon as the ground is dry enough so j  ln
that the roller will not sink, and repeat frequently until  A lan
the middle of summer. Use a hand roller weighing at  » lilo
least 250 pounds. Large areas may be rolled with a farm  Z lan
Weeds. Keep the weeds out of the new lawn. This nw  . HG2
require hand weeding, but it pays, Cut weeds before they  _, DU
produce seed. Dandelion, narrow-leaf and broad-leaf  ’ des
" plantain, dock and crabgrass are troublesome, These and » Sm
other weeds may appear in the new lawn, but they should Q
all be held in check to prevent their interfering with the  

   The Lawn 7
  growth of the young grass. Frequent clipping of the grass
- Y helps to control weeds. When weeds are dug or pulled
Y  it is a good practice to sprinkle a little grass seed where the
U   weed was removed. If this is done the weeds gradually
W   disappear. The lawn is liable to be reseeded to weeds from
_S  e the adjoining area, if close clipping and constant weeding
Q are not employed.
   r;l Clipping the Grass. It is best to allow the young ° ` 
in   Bluegrass to become four or five inches high before it is J
1_ _ cut the first time. Use a sharp sickle or scythe for the .
nl g first cutting or set the lawn mower to cut the grass stems {
II   at a height of at least two and one-half inches. Keep the 5
I`,  E grass clipped, because repeated cutting encourages the
all  Z spreading of the roots and hastens the formation of a good
me L turf. The frequency of mowing will depend upon the rate
p_ iv of growth of the grass. In seasons when the grass is mak-
50 I _ ing rapid growth, once a week is not too often. During
3   dry, hot weather, cut the lawn less frequently and leave the
O1,   grass blades a little longer, two and a half or three inches.
me . Unless the grass is wet and so long that the clippings col-
lte Q lect in bunches they are best left on the lawn. The clip-
mt ; pings act as a mulch and conserve moisture. If the season
Hd _ causes an unusual growth it may be necessary to rake and
OH  _ remove the clippings. This· raking should be done lightly
jid {.  so as not to injure the young grass.
All z cnan or THE oro LAWN
ich  i There are many old lawns that have deteriorated to
ins.  . Sueh an extent that it is almost impossible to renew them.
so I ln many if not most instances the poor condition of the
util   lawn is due to a deficiency of plant nutrients. In lawns
at  l like these the easiest method is to treat the area as a new
arm   lawn and follow instructions given in the preceding pages.
Some old lawns have good Bluegrass sod that has been
nay 1 neglected. Fertilizing, rolling, reseeding and regular clip-
hey   Ding will improve the turf on these lawns. Weeds and llll-
leai  i desirable grasses should be dug up and destroyed, fresh
and   soil added and the place reseeded or sodded.
illlll g Fertilize the area by using well-rotted manure, pref-

. 8 Kentucky Extension Circnl