Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Turf - Turf Establishment or Complete Renovation With Compost

The following is information on turf establishment or complete renovation with compost. Compost additions at establishment or renovation can have dramatic effects of the long term health of turf. It is especially useful in disturbed sites, building sites with heavy traffic during construction, and poor soils.


• Application Rate: Apply a 1 to 2 inch layer prior to land preparation. Use the higher rate on sites with exposed subsoil, compaction problems, or that are very sandy.
• Application: Apply using a topdresser or by hand
• Incorporation: Till compost to a 5 to 7 inch depth so you have a 20 to 30% inclusion rate. Add any additional lime or fertilizer needed at this time.
• Prepare Seed Bed: After incorporation, finish preparing area to seed or sod. Smooth the area. Make sure compost is well incorporated. Coarse compost remnants can interfere with weed/soil contact.
• Seed or sod: Use a turf seeder or lay sod. Avoid excessive compaction during seeding or sodding.
• Watering: Water to germinate grass or to establish the sod roots.

Gordon Johnson, Extension Horticulture Agent, UD, Kent County

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