Archive for the ‘Arizona Sod Landscaping’ Category

All About Hybrid Bermuda Grass

Thursday, July 11th, 2019

Hybrid bermuda grasses are a popular choice for home lawns in Arizona. They come in different varieties. One of the most popular choices for home lawns in Arizona is Midiron. Other popular varieties include Tifway, Tifgreen and TifGrand. All of these varieties are hybrid bermuda grass, meaning two species with desirable traits are bred to create a high-quality grass.

Hybrid bermuda grasses are designed to be drought and heat-tolerant. Some varieties, such as TifGrand, are also more shade-tolerant. Hybrid grasses are also hypoallergenic because they do not produce any pollen – making them a great choice for people with allergies. Most are also bred to be resistant to insects and disease.

In addition, hybrid bermuda grass is often thicker than other types, which means it can prevent more weeds.

To give you an idea of how popular each variety of hybrid bermuda grass is for home lawns in our area, this is how much of each type we sell on average:

  • 80% Midiron
  • 15% Tifway
  • 3% TiffGrand
  • 2% Tifgreen

We’ve created an infographic with this information as well, for those visually-inclined folks. Check it out on our Facebook page.

Here’s a breakdown of each sod variety to help you choose which one is right for you:
green blades of grass, up close

Midiron

  • Most popular in Arizona
  • Drought tolerant
  • Low maintenance

Tifway 419

  • Most durable variety
  • Drought tolerant
  • Extra maintenance

Tifgreen 328

  • Very fine texture
  • Bright green color
  • Highly manicured appearance

TifGrand Bermuda

  • True sun and shade grass
  • Dark green color
  • Fine Texture

Palmetto St. Augustine

  • Best for shade, but excellent in sun as well
  • Bright green color
  • Low maintenance

Still not sure which one to choose? Take our quiz to find the right sod for your lawn.

FAQ: How Often Should I Fertilize Bermuda Grass?

Tuesday, June 18th, 2019

A question we get asked frequently around here is…

“How often should I fertilize Bermuda grass?”

how often to fertilize your Bermuda sod lawn

It’s a great question and knowing the answer will help ensure that you have the healthiest lawn possible; one that thrives through the warm months of the year.

So here is your answer:

You should fertilize your Bermuda grass about once a month in the spring using a quick-release, complete fertilizer Once your lawn is fully green and dense, you can switch to a slow-release fertilizer. This will slow the growth of your lawn, so it doesn’t become overgrown.

It’s important to switch to a slow-release fertilizer once your lawn is dense, so that you won’t get a lot of growth. This ensures you’re caring for your lawn in the most efficient manner.

We have several other articles related to the topic of Bermuda grass, including midiron, and fertilizer on our site. Here’s a round-up of those articles, in case you’re still curious or have some other questions.

Other Helpful Articles

How To Get Rid of Weeds – This article describes the most common weeds in Arizona and how to eliminate them from your lawn.

Effects of Over-fertilizing – This article explains how you can accidentally over-fertilize your lawn. It also tells you how to repair an over fertilized lawn.

Can I Fertilize My Lawn in the Summer – This article answers that question and gives additional fertilization tips.

Best Fertilizer for Bermuda Grass – This article goes into detail on which fertilizer is best to use on your Bermuda sod, depending on the time of year and the maturity stage of your lawn.

Common Lawncare Mistakes and How to Avoid Them – This article helps you avoid the most common lawn care mistakes that homeowners make.

Best Time of Year to Aerate Your Bermuda Grass Lawn – This article explains the process of aerating your lawn, why it is important, and when is the best time of year to do so.

About Evergreen Turf

Here at Evergreen Turf, we pride ourselves on being your go-to source for sod in Arizona. Whether you just need tips on how to keep your lawn healthy year-round or you need to purchase sod from us, we have you covered. We even offer installation of our sod products, so you don’t have to worry about installing it yourself.

Not sure which type of sod is right for your lawn? Take our quiz to help you select which variety of sod is suited for your unique conditions. For all things related to lawn care, be sure to check out our lawn care section on our website, which covers everything from irrigation and mowing to nutrition, insect control and fall over-seeding.

If you have any other questions about Arizona sod, whether it has to do with fertilizing your Bermuda sod or anything else, contact our team today and let us know how we can help you. You can also ask us questions or just say hi on our Facebook page!

Top 10 Tips for Arizona Sod

Thursday, June 6th, 2019

Here at Evergreen Turf, we talk about sod a lot! In fact, we’ve been writing blog posts and articles on how best to care for your sod lawn in Arizona for over a decade. People from Phoenix to Tucson and the cities in between turn to us, not just for sod installations, but for lawn care tips. Why? Because they know they can trust us to provide accurate information on creating healthy lawns in Arizona. Here is a collection of our top 10 tips for Arizona sod, from our article archive. Enjoy!

Rye grass is a great choice for Arizona lawns in the winter

Best Fertilizer for St Augustine Grass

The best fertilizer for St Augustine grass will vary, but the rule of thumb is one pound of nitrogen for every 1,000 square feet. Fertilizing every two months is ideal unless you apply slow-release nitrogen that can be spread every 10 weeks. There are numerous fertilizers marketed for St. Augustine specifically such as Lesco St. Augustine Lawn Fertilizer, Dr. Earth Organic Super Natural Lawn Fertilizer and Pennington’s Weed and Feed product.

Learn more here: https://www.evergreenturf.com/best-fertilizer-for-st-augustine-grass.php

How Long Does It Take For Sod To Take Root

The process takes about two weeks for shallow roots and up to six weeks to establish deep root growth.

Be sure to read the full article for tips on how to encourage deep root growth, as well as how to best prepare your soil for sod. Learn more here: https://www.evergreenturf.com/How-Long-Does-It-Take-for-Sod-to-Take-Root.php

The Best Grass For Arizona Lawns

For the warm seasons, the best types of grass for Arizona lawns are Bermuda grasses, such as Tifway, Midiron and others. Palmetto St. Augustine is also a great choice for warm seasons, as it is the most heat-tolerant of all St. Augustine cultivars. For winter grass, the best option is perennial ryegrass. You want to over-seed your summer lawn with perennial ryegrass in the fall when the temperatures outside start to drop to ensure a lush, green winter lawn.

Learn more here: https://www.evergreenturf.com/best-grass-arizona-lawns.php

How To Make St. Augustine Grass Thicker

In a nutshell, you want to follow these five steps to make St. Augustine grass thicker:

  1. Properly prepare the soil.
  2. Water sufficiently – the watering schedule varies based on whether you’re working with a freshly installed lawn or a mature lawn, as well as time of year.
  3. Mow the lawn to the proper height, make sure your mower has sharp blades, and don’t bag the trimmings.
  4. Fertilize with one pound of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet of lawn space. Fertilize during periods of active growth only.
  5. Hand pull weeds whenever possible, and be very careful if you choose to use chemical herbicides.

Learn more here: https://www.evergreenturf.com/how-to-make-st-augustine-grass-thicker.php

How To Keep Grass Green in Five Steps

  1. Choose a type of sod that will work best in your yard.
  2. Test your soil.
  3. Water thoroughly but do not over-water.
  4. Don’t mow too short.
  5. Aerate your lawn once in spring and once in fall.

Learn more here: https://www.evergreenturf.com/How-to-Keep-Grass-Green-in-5-Easy-Steps.php

How To Have Year-Round Grass in Arizona

Bermuda grass is used most often for Arizona lawns during the warm months. It will stay green and continue to grow as long as it has enough water. It is a perennial grass, meaning it comes back year after year. Its active season is usually from May to September.

In September or October, when the temperatures start to get cooler, Bermuda grasses will begin to turn yellow. While your lawn may look dead, it actually is not, this just means the grass has gone dormant.

If you want to ensure that your lawn is green from October through May until the Bermuda grass becomes active again, you will want to overseed your lawn with Rye grass. This grass is suited to cooler temperatures and will begin to die off in May once the afternoons start to become hotter.

Learn more here: https://www.evergreenturf.com/how-to-have-year-round-grass-arizona.php

Why and When To Fertilize Your Lawn

Why should you fertilize your lawn? Because fertilizers help to build a better root system, which in turn helps protect your lawn from extreme heat, cold, drought, foot traffic, and other stress factors.

When should you fertilize your lawn? You should fertilize several times throughout the year:

  • February – April – Strengthens the roots and helps to set it up for success during the heavy growing season.
  • April – June – Gives your lawn the energy it needs to stay healthy during the summer and fall.
  • June – August – Encourage continued growth so that you still have a lawn in the fall.
  • September – November – Your lawn is ready for another growth period, and will need nutrients in order to thrive. Apply your fertilizer just before the winter chill hits in order to increase nitrogen storage.

Learn more here: https://www.evergreenturf.com/Why-and-When-to-Fertilize-Your-Lawn.php

The Best Time To Install Your Arizona Sod Lawn

Sod can be installed year round as long as the soil is properly prepared beforehand.

Learn more here: https://www.evergreenturf.com/Best-Time-Install-Arizona-Sod-Lawn.php

A Guide To 15-15-15 Fertilizer

5-15-15 fertilizer is a fertilizer that contains equal parts of nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium. It is the best option when you’re installing new sod in Arizona because the soil in Arizona naturally has little to no phosphorous content.

Learn more here: https://www.evergreenturf.com/15-15-15-fertilizer-guide-arizona.php

Best Watering Practices for Arizona Sod

  • When to water freshly installed sod: For the first two weeks after you install your new sod, you should water it four to eight times per day in short intervals of five to ten minutes to keep the sod evenly moist.
  • Water an established lawn two to three times per week for ten to 25 minutes. Try to water early in the morning or in the evening.
  • Rainwater and recycled household water can supplement your traditional water supply. Check your local laws to ensure it is legal to do so.
  • Sprinklers and timers can help make watering sod in Arizona more efficient.

Learn more here: https://www.evergreenturf.com/best-watering-practices-arizona-sod.php

Benefits of Sod

Friday, August 3rd, 2018

To sod, or not to sod? In Arizona’s dry desert climate, this is a major question for homeowners who want to enjoy a lush green lawn, despite the blistery hot temperatures that can be incurred this time of year. Fortunately, there are actually many benefits of sod. With a bevy of reasons under its belt, sod can easily become your lawn’s best friend. The key is finding the right type of sod that works for your climate, as well as the unique elements specific to your own individual space.

What are the major benefits of sod lawns?

Here’s a look at a few of our favorite benefits of sod:

Benefit #1: Sod Reduces Heat

Asphalt, concrete, bare soil, and artificial turf have a tendency to emanate heat. Conversely, sod absorbs heat, creating cooling properties that can bring the temperature over the sod down 10 to 30 degrees cooler than other landscaping material.

According to Turfgrass Producers International, “The front lawns of eight houses have the cooling effect of about 70 tons of air conditioning. That’s amazing when the average home has an air conditioner with just a three or four ton capacity. The cooling effect of irrigated turf reduces the amount of fuel that must be burned to provide the electricity which powers the air conditioners.”

Those numbers are huge in a high desert region such as Arizona, where heat can easily overtake comfortable outside living spaces. With sod on your side, you’ll enjoy a built in natural balance against the sizzling sun.

Benefit #2: Sod Adds Value to Your Home

People say kitchens and bathrooms sell homes, but remember, buyers have to get past your front yard long before they walk through your front door. A well-landscaped home can increase the overall property value by 15 to 20 percent. Clean, soft grass is particularly appealing to perspective homeowners who have small children or pets who will likely romp around in the yard during playtime.

Benefit #3: Sod Controls Erosion

Sod is fully matured from the moment it’s installed, meaning it’s immediately ready to go to work, controlling erosion and rooting itself deep within the dirt beneath it. If you have steep hills on your property, sod can easily be installed on the slopes to perpetuate stabilization. If you have a dirt-covered lawn that’s prone to get muddy on the few occasions we get big rains in this part of the country, sod can eliminate the muck and mire and give you a lawn you’ll truly desire.

Benefit #4: Sod Absorbs Carbon Dioxide & Releases Oxygen

By default, plants are humans’ best friends. They take the carbon dioxide we release into the air, process it, and send back fresh, clean oxygen for us all to breathe. Lawns are special carbon dioxide filters, given the sheer size they take up at any given time.

Grass also absorbs harmful agents that find their way into the air we breathe, such as hydrogen fluoride and peroxyacetyl nitrates.

Beyond this, the lovely blades on lawns also act as a natural dust and dirt filter, helping to keep an estimated 12 million tons of particles from floating around in the air by capturing it and making it part of its own ecosystem.

Benefit #5: Sod Reduces Noise from Traffic

Have you ever been inside a home that has no carpet or furniture? If so, you realize just how loud everyday sounds can be. A simple footstep echoes on the walls and makes a sound last much longer than it would if there was something around to absorb the sound.

That’s what sod does for the exterior of your home. The impact of noise pollution—even by simple things like cars passing by—is greatly reduced when you have sod acting as a sound barrier. The thick layer of leaves and dirt are apt to absorb sound before it begins bouncing off area structures. Of course, no sod can combat the annoying noise of your neighbor’s unnecessary car alarm, but you’ll certainly hear a difference if you go from a dirt landscape to a lawn that’s covered in sound-absorbing sod.

If you’re trying to figure out if sod would be a good solution for your lawn, we invite you to stop by our location at 11407 E. Germann Road in Chandler, Arizona. You can also learn about the sod varieties we offer here at Evergreen Turf, and if you already know what you want, go ahead and order online!

How to Spare Your Lawn During Summer Outdoor Parties

Friday, July 20th, 2018

Summer is a time to spend outside with friends. It means big BBQs, lawn games, and probably a few four-legged furry friends who want to get in on some of the action. Unfortunately, heavy foot traffic is not ideal for a healthy sod lawn. If you plan to throw outdoor parties this summer, here are some tips on how to keep your lawn beautiful while avoiding damage to your sod.

how to prevent damage to your sod lawn during outdoor parties

Make Friends with Mulch

Mulch is a great space filler when summer fun ensues. It’s decorative, easy to buy in large batches, and can be spread across large areas. It’s also multi-useful, acting as a beautifier, boundary space, and safety element.

Put mulch or small gravel under jungle gyms and swing sets so you don’t have to worry about bare spots forming in your lawn.

Move Large Items That Rest on your Sod Lawn

If you keep large items in one place for too long, the grass underneath will become deprived of oxygen and nutrients, causing it to turn sickly yellow or brown in the shape of the object that was over it. When your lawn has large, heavy items on it, be sure to move them to a new location every other day to keep the grass beneath it from suffering.

Example item might include:

  • Corn hole game and other lawn games
  • Kiddie pools
  • Slip ‘N Slides
  • Bounce castles
  • Jungle gyms (if they’re light enough to move)
  • Trampolines

Create a Safe Space for Your Flower Beds

When the good times get going, your guests can easily overlook the stunning flowers you’ve spent so much time working to procure into perfect petals. It would be a shame to see someone trample on them because they didn’t realize there was a don’t-walk space directly beneath their feet.

To prevent this mishap, add a decorative fence around your flower bed. This is an awesome opportunity to take your gardening creativity to a new level. This might be the perfect time to install a river rock dry creek, adding an aesthetic element to your outside space.

Place Your Paths Strategically

You can influence the routes your guests take when they walk on the lawn by carefully placing your patio furniture, grill, and games in a manner that necessitates minimal foot traffic on your lawn. If you have a gazebo or meeting space that’s a bit further away from your house, install stepping stones to add an appealing path that will guide your guests from here to there, while protecting the surrounding grass from incurring foot traffic.

If you need extra sod to fix damaged areas on your lawn, or are looking for a brand new sod lawn, stop by Evergreen Turf and let us get you ready for your next outdoor party today!

How to Work with Native Desert Soil and a Sod Lawn

Monday, July 2nd, 2018

Arizona is known for its native desert soil. If you’ve ever tried to grow a lush, green lawn in Phoenix or Tucson, there are certain challenges that are quite unique to the climate and soil in the Southwest.

Native desert soil doesn't store water very well, which can cause the sod to dry out very easily.

What’s the issue with soil in Arizona?

Native desert soil doesn’t store water very well, which can cause the sod to dry out very easily. Naturally, we don’t see a lot of rainfall in this part of the country, which means you have to be diligent about adhering to a watering schedule that’s right for your chosen type of grass during each phase of its growth, paying attention to the temperatures and time of year as each season progresses. Native desert soil is also comprised of few nutrients and can’t accumulate the nutrients it does receive very well.

Another difficulty with Arizona soil is the fact that it lacks the microorganisms that live in good soil. Microorganisms are essential for a healthy lawn, as they help feed the grass’s roots and keep everything beneath the surface alive and well.

How to Improve Native Soil so You Can Plant a Healthy Sod Lawn

Fortunately, the difficulties that come with native Arizona soil can easily be overcome with a little bit of lawn care due diligence.

  1. Till your soil. To begin, till your soil down to a depth of about six to eight inches. During this time, you can work in some compost as you go, helping to replace vital nutrients the soil will need to sustain your sod.
  1. Remove weeds. As everyone knows, weeds are a problem. They take the vitamins, mineral, and water away from your lawn’s roots and keep it for themselves. If you can remove weeds as you’re prepping your soil, you’ll set yourself up for greater success in the long run.
  1. Mix in top soil. Top soil, or soil amendment, is formulated with special ingredients to help your lawn grow. This step will provide your grass the opportunity to form a deep root system. In other words, your lawn will be stronger because the foundation will be firmly in the ground and fit to create a green landscape.

Now your soil is ready for sod! Of course, you don’t want to pick just any sod. It’s important to look for a grass that will grow well in the conditions your property provides, taking into account how much shade the sod will receive, how much care you’ll be able to provide, and which type of equipment you’ll be using to keep it trimmed. Not sure which type of sod is best for you? Use our Lawn Selector tool to drill down on blades of grass that’ll give you the optimal outcome.

Evergreen Turf is Arizona’s place for beautiful lawns. If you’re in need of sod, contact our team. We’ll deliver your sod right to your home. We also offer installation, or you can choose to install it yourself.

Can I Fertilize My Lawn in the Summer?

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2018

A common question asked among homeowners who have lawns is, “Can I fertilize my lawn in the summer?” The answer is yes you can and should fertilize your lawn in the summer. It’s important to keep your lawn fed throughout the year and that includes in the summer time.

Just like people need a balanced diet to be at their best, your lawn needs a balanced diet to grow green and strong.

So, how do you know which fertilizer to choose and how much fertilizer to give your lawn during the summer months?

The Fertilizer Balancing Act

Can I Fertilize My Lawn in the Summer? - Evergreen Turf, Arizona's Sod Farm
Your lawn needs nutrients to grow. Seems simple enough, right? Wrong.

Over-fertilizing can cause it to grow too quickly. If that happens, you may find yourself with an excessive thatch buildup, which will ultimately produce extra work for you, as you’ll need to remove the thatch in order to allow nutrients to reach the roots. On the other hand, if you don’t fertilize enough, you could wind up with a yellow patch of lawn that’s thin and slow to recover from everyday wear.

As a general rule, lawns should be fertilized monthly. If you have Palmetto St. Augustine grass, it does not require a lot of nitrogen. If you’re using Palmetto, it should be fed with a fertilizer that’s high in potassium and magnesium.

Related: Summer Health for Arizona Sod

Of course, if you’re not sure which fertilizer is best for your lawn, it’s always a good idea to talk to lawncare experts. An incorrect guess can be a costly decision if you wind up killing your grass or creating a problem of over-thatching.

If you’re lucky enough to have achieved a thick, dense, dark green lawn, you probably only need to fertilize every six to eight weeks. In this case, consider using a slow-release fertilizer. These products provide a constant stream of nutrients while reducing the likelihood of over-thatching and speedy growth that can result in the need to mow frequently.

Bermuda Grass Fertilization Tips

Bermuda grass lawns require regular feeding for healthy growth. If you’re in Arizona or another high desert region, we recommend fertilizing at least once per month during the summer. Use complete fertilizer that’s high in nitrogen but offers a medium amount of phosphorous. The following formulas usually work well for Bermuda grass:

  • 21-7-14
  • 16-8-4
  • 20-5-5

Once your lawn is 100% filled in, you can switch over to a slow-release or organic fertilizer to help slow the growth but maintain healthy vigor and color.

Evergreen Turf is Arizona’s one-stop shop for sod lawns. We offer an assortment of residential and commercial sod products, and our experienced staff can even install your lawn for you. Stop by our Chandler, Arizona location, and let us know what we can do to help you improve your lawn!

Best Fertilizer for Bermuda Grass in Arizona

Thursday, April 5th, 2018

Think all fertilizers are created equal? Think again! Fertilizers are comprised of different variations of chemical compounds, each of which has its own duty where lawncare is concerned. Choosing the right fertilizer depends on your answers to the following questions:

  • What kind of grass are you trying to grow?
  • Where do you live?
  • What time of year is it?

Read on to learn about the best fertilizer for Bermuda grass in Arizona.

best fertilizer for Bermuda grass in Arizona

What Does Fertilizer Do?

Fertilizer provides nutrients to the soil, which, in turn, help your grass grow and turn it that beautiful green color we’ve all come to know. Most soil doesn’t provide enough nutrients to support the healthy growth of grass. Fertilizer acts as a nutritional supplement, delivering essential ingredients that absorb into the ground so plants can more readily take on nutrients needed to sustain healthy development.

Unfortunately, many homeowners don’t understand the importance of fertilizer, which can be particularly impactful in Arizona’s high desert regions. In short, a lack of nutrients fosters yellowing lawns at best. At worst, malnourished lawns can present significant bald spots. Fertilizers help fill in the gaps and facilitate growth.

How Much Fertilizer Does Your Arizona Lawn Need?

Determining how much fertilizer you actually need is important. You don’t want to put too much fertilizer on the ground, as the organic elements can overwhelm your grass. On the other hand, you don’t want to fertilize too little because you’ll just be wasting time and money on resources that won’t do your lawn justice.

If you give your lawn too much—or too little—fertilizer, your efforts can have unintended negative consequences. Bermuda grass needs regular fertilizing for good growth and color during the growing season. As a good rule of thumb, apply fertilizer monthly during the summer to produce a lush and fruitful lawn.

If Evergreen Turf is installing your lawn, you won’t have to worry about the preliminary steps associated with outstanding yards. We fertilize every yard we install with 15-15-15 fertilizer right after we lay your sod, allowing optimal nutrition to make its way to your yard’s roots and setting the stage for a lush lawn long after we’re gone.

To expedite growth in the early phases, fertilize with balanced fertilizer two weeks after your lawn has been installed. Be sure to adhere to proper watering practices during this time, as water will help push the nutrients from the surface of the soil to the grass’s roots, which will help facilitate a healthy, lush lawn as your plants establish themselves.

On the other hand, you may notice your lawn is growing faster than you’d prefer. In this case, switch to a slow-release fertilizer such as 28-3-10 or 32-4-7, and reduce your fertilizing frequency to every eight weeks. Slow-release fertilizers allow your lawn to absorb vital nutrients over time, so they don’t get overloaded with minerals all at once, which can cause sudden growth that’s hard for some homeowners to keep up with.

What’s the Best Fertilizer for Bermuda Grass in Arizona?

For established lawns, a balanced fertilizer (preferably one with an analysis that’s high in nitrogen) is ideal. If this describes your situation, opt for a fertilizer with an analysis of 16-8-4 for best results. Alternatively, 21-7-14, 26-4-2, or 24-0-4 work well for established Arizona lawns.

If you’ve just installed your lawn—or plan to install a new lawn soon—that requires a different approach. For new lawns, the fertilizer of choice should be similar to a 6-20-20 analysis (6% nitrogen, 20% phosphorus, 20% potassium) or a 15-15-15 (15% nitrogen, 15% phosphorus, 15% potassium). For best results, apply the fertilizer right before—or immediately after—the sod is installed.

How Do You Know if Your Fertilizer Isn’t Working for You?

Your lawn will tell you readily if it’s not getting the balanced diet it needs to maintain a healthy lush look. An improperly nourished lawn will go one of two ways.

Under-Fertilized Lawns:

  • Thin
  • Yellow
  • Slow to recover from wear

Over-Fertilized Lawns:

  • Grow at excessive rates of speed
  • Produce excess thatch build up
  • Make a ton of extra work for you.

Chances are, if your lawn is “too healthy”, you’ll notice because you’ll suddenly find yourself spending a whole lot more time in your yard than you used to; and it’s usually for chores, not leisurely activities!

It’s important to note that you may be fertilizing and watering just the right amount, but if you’re not using a fertilizer with the proper analysis for your situation, the care you take in planning and executing your fertilizing schedule won’t matter much because the imbalance of nutrients will skew your results.

A beautiful lawn starts by picking a top-of-the-line product. At Evergreen Turf, outstanding lawns are what we do best! From helping you find the perfect fertilizer for your lawn to providing pest control and maintenance tips, our experts are here to guide you to greener grasses. Call or email us if you have lawn care questions only the pros can answer!

Winter Rye Grass Lawn Care in Arizona

Monday, February 5th, 2018

You may think grass is grass, but your lawn would likely disagree. Grass, just like people, has different personalities; depending on the type of lawn you’ve installed – and the time of year you’re caring for it – you may need to adjust your approach to achieve an optimal outcome.

Rye grass is a great choice for Arizona lawns in the winter

Rye grass is a great choice for Arizona lawns in the winter if you’re looking for a lawn that stays green all year long. Winter rye grass—when coupled with a summer grass, such as Bermuda—will take on new life when the temperatures drop to more moderate conditions during the chillier months.

Here are a few things you should know when it comes to caring for your rye grass lawn this winter season:

Arizona Winter Rye Grass 101

Unlike Bermuda grass and other breeds of blades, winter rye grass doesn’t just go dormant when it’s not in season; it can’t survive the summers. Because of this, it needs to be replanted each year. Ideally, winter rye grass is replanted each October, which allows it time to settle in and take roots before its summer grass counterpart goes into hiding. Typically, when it’s properly cared for, winter rye grass will stay thick, lush, and green well into May (or until temperatures regularly sustain 100 degrees in Arizona).

It’s really all about timing. If your plant your winter rye grass too early, the Arizona heat can bake the seedlings, rendering them useless. If you wait too long, the seeds won’t have enough time to germinate and grow healthy before your summer grass starts re-growing. Although the optimal time to plant your winter rye grass is in October, you should see positive results as long as the weather stays warm enough to keep the seedlings healthy.

There are two types of rye grass—perennial and annual—each of which has its own characteristics and benefits. Perennial rye grass tends to be more expensive, but it’s often favored because it

  • Germinates faster
  • Has a finer leaf texture
  • Produces a darker green color
  • Tends to be more resilient
  • Doesn’t produce as much grass stain

On the other side, annual rye grass tends to be a more affordable option that still provides beautiful winter lawns for Arizona residents.   Annual ryegrass is less favored because it uses more water, and grows much faster than perennial ryegrass – meaning more grass clippings to deal with!

Watering

For established lawns, the amount of watering depends on the weather conditions. For optimal results, follow this watering schedule:

  • November & December: Every 3 to 7 days
  • Remainder of the Season: Every 7 to 14 days

After a winter rain, you can shut your water off for one or two cycles. Be sure not to over-water your lawn, as too much water can prevent your seeds from germinating and growing.

Fertilizing

It’s important to choose the right fertilizer for your lawn. Too much or too little of an ingredient can throw off the balance of your blades, impeding their growth or causing them damage. Feed your rye grass monthly with an analysis such as 21-7-14 or 22-3-9 for best results.To facilitate a positive growth process, do not fertilize your lawn until you’ve mowed it for the first time. Be mindful that too much fertilization can cause rapid growth and a buildup of excess thatch, both of which can create more work for you. If you don’t fertilize enough, however, you’ll likely be left with a yellowish lawn that lacks the results you were looking for.

Mowing

Mowing is a strategy in and of itself. Heed these tips for the healthiest possible rye grass winter lawn:

  • Keep it mowed around 1/2″ to 2″
  • Never remove more than 1/3 of the leaf
  • Do not mow until rye grass grows 2″ tall

A note of caution: Be careful not to scalp your winter lawn. Cutting the grass too short reduces its ability to photosynthesize properly. When this happens, the roots become susceptible to drought because they stay shallow and close to the surface, which can be devastating in our Arizona climate.

It’s important to maintain proper leaf lengths to stimulate deep root growth, which allows your lawn access to moisture that’s deeper beneath the earth’s surface. Because rye grass is not a spreading grass that comes from the likes of stolons or runners, a super short mowing strategy can cause your lawn to experience dead patches that overtake your front or backyard.

Your mowing frequency will depend on how quickly your grass is growing. Rye grass typically grows fairly quickly, so you may have to mow more frequently than you do with summer grass, but the end result will be a beautiful, luscious lawn. In other words, hello running barefoot through your yard all year long!

Procuring a proper lawn is a science. If you’re ready to get the green going all year long, your best bet is to reach out to lawn care specialists who understand Arizona’s unique climate.

Need sod in Arizona? Contact us today.

How to Prevent Disease and Insects in Your Lawn

Thursday, December 21st, 2017

Like people, no lawn is immune to disease and damage. That said, the better you take care of your body (or blades of grass), the more likely it is to live a long, healthy life. On the other hand, if you engage in harmful behaviors, the end result will usually reflect the unkempt lifestyle—even if the detrimental activities were accidental. Thankfully, Arizona, with its dry conditions, doesn’t really have much disease pressure, but there are some activities that can cause problems. Along the same lines, Arizona tends not to have too many issues with insects. On occasion, however, they do make an appearance.

The best way to keep insect infestations away is to use preventative insecticide in the spring when it starts to warm up.

The best way to prevent diseases and unwanted pests is to educate yourself about the possibilities so you can take steps to keep problems from occurring.

What Does Disease Look Like on Arizona Lawns?

Diseases are only caused by environmental stresses like overwatering and too much thatch—problems which can actually be correlated, depending on the situation. Thanks to Arizona’s specifically dry climate, we don’t have the diseases many other parts of the country have, but if you’re overwatering or over-fertilizing, you’re likely causing your lawn stress and inviting diseases.

St. Augustine is a common type of grass in Arizona because it’s quite heat tolerant, allowing it to thrive in the excessive summer heat and sun we see in this part of the country. Unlike many other types of grass, St. Augustine tends to do well on lawns that are well-shaded. Homeowners who have St. Augustine grass often face specific struggles, however. People commonly apply too much nitrogen to St. Augustine grass, which causes too much growth. Additionally, because this grass is often installed on lawns with shady areas, it’s not uncommon for homeowners to overwater in the summer, as shaded areas often require les water than those, which are directly exposed to full sunlight.

Generally speaking, if you water properly, dethatch regularly, and use the appropriate fertilizer for your type of lawn, you won’t have to worry much about diseases.

What Do You Need to Know About Preventing Insect Infestations in Arizona?

There aren’t too many issues with insects in Arizona, but there are times when they can become extremely problematic. Unfortunately, by the time they’re apparent enough for you to know there’s an issue, it’s already too late to stop it. Most of those problems start with insects that lay their eggs in the fall or spring. When the larvae hatch, you suddenly have a grub, moth, or ant problem that seems to come out of nowhere.

One major contributor to large colonies of unwanted pests is thatch. Thatch is the buildup of organic materials such as roots, stems, and leaves that accumulate at the surface of the soil. Regular dethatching is important for two reasons: it breaks up this barrier of matter that prevents moisture and nutrients from reaching the roots of the grass, and it keeps bugs from taking up residence within the matted material. If thatch gets too thick, it can easily become an ideal home for unwanted pests.

Preventative pesticides and regular dethatching should put you on a path to a pretty pest-free property.

The best way to keep insect infestations away is to use preventative insecticide in the spring when it starts to warm up. In Arizona, target April or May for this process since it tends to warm up earlier here than many other parts of the country.

Are you looking for advice from professional lawn care experts? Our Evergreen Turf team lives and breathes beautiful lawns! Check out our Sod Blog for plenty of helpful tips and tricks. Contact us at Evergreen Turf today if you need sod in Phoenix, Tucson or the surrounding areas of Arizona.