Overseeding in Arizona



Would you like to ensure a beautifully green, lush lawn, no matter the season? Overseeding – part of a proactive maintenance plan – keeps lawns from going dormant during the colder months of winter. If you want your lawn to be green year round, now is the time to overseed. It is important that either you or your landscaper uses Arizona’s cooler season grass – Perennial Ryegrass, during this process.

When to Overseed?

The optimum time to overseed is during October. This is ideal because good seed germination requires sun, adequate water, and contact with the soil while it’s still warm. If you wait until November, the cooler temperatures may slow the process of germination, providing you with uneven results. You may notice that many of Arizona’s golf courses are temporarily closed, as they too, overseed for the winter.

Process of Overseeding

To ensure success, without wasting natural resources when overseeding your lawn, follow the next eight tips – and as always, if you have any questions, please contact Elite Landscaping and Sprinkler Repair: (602) 390-4645.

#1. Stop fertilizing 4 to 6 weeks prior to overseeding your Bermuda grass.

#2. Lightly de-thatch your lawn to allow the seed to contact the soil. This is accomplished by setting the dethatcher blades to cut approximately ¼” into the soil – any deeper and you risk damaging the root structure of your Bermuda. Rake the removed thatch into piles and dispose of it properly.

#3. The next step is scalping. This lowers the height of the Bermuda, making it easier for the Perennial Ryegrass seed to receive the sunlight it needs, in order to germinate. It is recommended that you drop your mowing height to ¼” – ½”. Clippings can be used as a top-dressing after seed is spread.

#4. Apply 10 to 15 pounds of seed per 1,000 square feet of lawn. Include a quality starter fertilizer with seed. Broadcast seed in two directions to achieve even coverage.

#5. Cover the seed with ¼-inch of organic, salt-free mulch, or scalping clippings to help retain moisture. Keep seeds damp by watering 3 to 4 times per day to keep the top ½-inch of soil wet. Seed should germinate in about 7 days.

#6. When grass is 1-inch tall, reduce watering to once per day.

#7. When grass is 2-inches tall, at about the 2-week mark, mow for the first time. After the second or third mowing, 3 or 4 weeks in, water once every 2 to 3 days to a depth of 4”-6”.

#8. Once your lawn is established, water once every week.

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