How to Take Care of Your Newly Seeded Fescue Lawn after Aeration and Seeding

How to Take Care of Your Newly Seeded Fescue Lawn after Aeration and Seeding

How to Take Care of Your Newly Seeded Fescue Lawn after Aeration and Seeding

Of all the investments you put into your newly seeded fescue lawn during a typical season, the most important and most expensive one is usually aeration and seeding. In the Richmond suburbs of Virginia, fescue lawns are usually aerated and seeded in the early fall when air temperatures are between 60 and 75 degrees. The aeration and seeding process doesn’t stop with the service itself, though. Proper care of your new grass seed for the next couple of months is just as important as the quality of the service itself.

Any investment that you make as a homeowner, whether it’s in your roof, new furniture, or your lawn, should have a strong return and achieve the results you had in mind. Therefore, it is important after aeration and seeding to closely follow certain guidelines when caring for your lawn for the rest of the fall. Doing this will give your investment its greatest chance at success.

As we will discuss below, there are several things that you should do to maximize on the care of your newly seeded fescue lawn. The most involved step is going to be proper watering and knowing at what point you can stop watering and winterize your system. Another key factor that requires careful planning is when and how you can start mowing your lawn again. You’ll learn that patience is a virtue when it comes to watching grass grow, and it’s likely that some weeds will start to come in by the end of the year as well. All of this is normal, and a high quality fertilization company like Picture Perfect Lawn Maintenance should give you the resources you need to be properly involved in your lawn after aerating and seeding.

How to Take Care of Your Newly Seeded Fescue Lawn after Aeration and Seeding | Lawn Care | Fertilization | Picture Perfect Lawn Maintenance | (804) 530-2540

Begin Proper Water Water Immediately

Normally during the warm season, fescue lawns need one to one and a half inches of water a week in addition to average rainfall. A typical irrigation system can put this amount of water down when set to run every other morning for usually, but not always, 10-30 minutes a zone depending on coverage and water pressure. This typical watering practice promotes deeper root development and is meant to keep your lawn healthy through the heat of summer.

After your newly seeded fescue Lawn is completed we recommend watering three times a day every day of the week, but only long enough each time to keep the seed wet. It is important to turn the water off as soon as you begin to see it pool on the surface because watering to the point of creating run off can shift or flood your new seed. The ground should be saturated with water just enough for the seed to stay damp, but it should not reach the point of running off. Sloped or bare areas in your yard may need to be watered a bit more than the rest of it; this includes underneath large trees.

When estimating how much to water, it is useful to run your system prior to your newly seeded fescue lawn being put down so you know how long it takes for your ground to get wet, but not puddling. On average, a good starting point is running each irrigation zone for about five minutes around dawn, midday, and late afternoon.

It is important to start watering your newly seeded fescue Lawn as quickly after aeration and seeding as possible to begin encouraging germination. Dry seed cannot germinate, and while rainfall will get some of your grass to grow, it will not be as effective as a proper watering routine.

Once all of your seed has germinated and the newly seeded fescue lawn has reached a height of about two inches, which occurs approximately 28 days after your aeration and seeding service depending on how quickly your seed begins germinating, it is safe to return to the normal watering routine described above. Do not stop watering all together until the end of the growing season when it is time to winterize your irrigation system. Water is still necessary to the health of your lawn for as long as the grass wants to grow.

How to Take Care of Your Newly Seeded Fescue Lawn after Aeration and Seeding | Lawn Care | Fertilization | Picture Perfect Lawn Maintenance | (804) 530-2540

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Slow Your Mow

A subtle way that you can test the experience and professionalism of a company offering to provide you with aeration and seeding services is to ask them when they recommend resuming a mowing schedule after service. If the company you’re considering tells you that you can mow again one or two weeks after putting down fescue seed, run! No newly newly seeded fescue lawn is strong enough to withstand mowing that soon, and bad advice like that will greatly compromise the success of your aeration and seeding investment.

A good lawn care company that, like PPLM, provides mowing services in addition to aeration and seeding services will not be back to cut your lawn until all of your seed has germinated and had a couple of weeks to develop, which could take up to three to four weeks or more. The same rule of thumb applies if you maintain your own lawn. It’s vital to let your new grass develop soundly after aeration and seeding before putting it through the stress of a mow service. This takes time and is why we recommend prepping your yard for aeration and seeding by mowing lower than usual, as explained in our article here.

When you and your newly seeded fescue lawn are ready for that first cut, be sure to have new blades on your mower or have the old ones professionally sharpened. Dull blades tear grass, and baby grass is especially susceptible to damage this way. Wait until the new grass has reached a height of four and a half inches and only cut it down to three and a half inches at the lowest. Taking off too much of the grass blade at once is very stressful to a mature fescue plant, so it’s especially taxing and potentially fatal to newly developed grass. As a reminder, your tall fescue should never be cut lower than three inches at any time. A taller cut is optimal to help your lawn develop strong roots and establish itself more quickly.

While performing this first cut, be careful with how you turn to avoid ripping up any of your turf, and avoid any parts of the yard that are soft and could potentially rut. Because your developing fescue is still very fine and delicate at this stage, it is likely that it will appear to lie over after the first couple of mows. Even if it doesn’t look great, don’t mow it over more than once for the first couple of weeks. It is best to get off the lawn as quickly as possible to reduce the stress to your lawn.

How to Take Care of Your Newly Seeded Fescue Lawn after Aeration and Seeding | Lawn Care | Fertilization | Picture Perfect Lawn Maintenance | (804) 530-2540

Patience Is A Virtue

As a rule, any process of nature takes time. Your lawn is no exception, and aeration and seeding puts our patience to the test as we eagerly await the beautiful results for our fescue. It’s important though to keep perspective and remember the small details that could make the difference in the success of your new fescue seed.

Once your lawn has been core aerated, you will find in your yard the cork sized plugs of soil that were mechanically removed from the yard to allow fertilizer and grass seed to fall deeper and break down or germinate properly. These clumps of earth will dissolve over time with rainfall and watering. Since each plug of soil contains nutrients from your yard, it is best to leave them on the lawn to allow them break down and return to the turf rather than try to collect and remove them.

Always remember, your seed is not going to sprout overnight. It can take

21 days for your seed to germinate depending on the weather and how you’re watering. Fescue seed does not like to germinate in air temperatures that aren’t between 60 and 75 degrees, but your service is not always going to be performed on a day that will be followed by weeks of these constant temperatures. Additionally, it is important to continue watering throughout the germination process so the seedlings don’t become too dry. Improper watering, missed days, or having no irrigation system can delay your germination. Your newly seeded fescue lawn needs to get properly rooted, and water is vital to that process. However, please follow your local guidelines if your area is under any water restrictions.

One of the most unpleasant things a homeowner can see in their lawn is the development of unwanted weed growth. Despite how unwanted weeds generally are, it’s important to focus on the best priorities for the big picture of your newly seeded fescue lawn. This time of year, the focus of your fertilization company and you should be on establishing more grass. Weed control cannot be applied to the newly seeded fescue lawn; the lawn must be mowed at least three to four times before any weed treatment can be put down. Generally, but not always, this means that weeds can be treated after one and a half to two months from seeding, which is around the time that most fertilizer companies in Virginia do our last fertilization of the year. If you are on a good fertilizer program like the one provided by PPLM, keep in mind that pre- and post-emergent weed control is in standard applications at the start of the year.

How to Take Care of Your Newly Seeded Fescue Lawn after Aeration and Seeding | Lawn Care | Fertilization | Picture Perfect Lawn Maintenance | (804) 530-2540

So long as you invest in a reliable, professional, and experienced company for your aeration and seeding and spend the time caring for your new fescue seed properly after it’s been put down, you should be well on your way to a successfully revitalized lawn this fall. To learn more about our recommendations for seeding aftercare, please visit our YouTube video on the subject:

7 Responses to How to Take Care of Your Newly Seeded Fescue Lawn after Aeration and Seeding

  1. I think this is one of the most vital info for me.

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  2. I’m with you when you said that any homeowner’s investment like furniture or lawn should have a strong return to make the effort worth it. My mother purchased a new property, and she wants to create a beautiful lawn. The soil is raw so we were thinking about yard seeding. Your article about watering it 3 times a day will be noted. we’ll look for a trusted lawn seeding service soon. Thanks.

  3. Just to let you know, when you say ‘patients is a virtue’ on your website, you mean ‘patience is a virtue’. The way you have it, you’re talking about the kind of patients that go to doctors ‘ offices, which isn’t what you mean to say. Just felt I had to write you as this is a glaring error which takes away from your overall beautiful presentation.

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