Rye Grass Over-Seeding / Winter Lawn FAQ
The most popular method of keeping your lawn green all year long in the Southwest, is winter lawn over-seeding with rye grass. Thanks to the beautiful dark green lawn rye grass provides, many people love their winter lawns, even more than their summer lawns!
When should I plant my winter lawn?
The optimum time to over-seed your sod grass lawn in Arizona is during the first two weeks of October, or when the evening temperatures consistently stay below 65 degrees.
What are the steps involved in planting a winter lawn?
Scalp your summer lawn
Scalp your Bermuda Grass (your summer lawn). In order to grow Rye grass successfully during the Arizona winter, you must first eliminate the Bermuda grass, in order to avoid competition for important nutrients.
Spread the Rye grass seed.
The higher quality seed that you start with, the better the chance to have a beautiful healthy winter lawn. Callaway Irrigation recommends a perennial Rye grass for areas that stay warm year round in Arizona.
Evenly spread high quality fertilizer, intended for newly planted lawns.
Be certain that you fertilize before you water your new seed for the first time. The fertilizer composition should be similar to this: 6% nitrogen, 20% phosphorus, 20% potassium or 15% each of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium mix. Be sure to follow the manufacturer's directions.
Spead a high quality mulch evenly
A great mulch will help retain both moisture, and heat, which are necessary for your winter lawn to germinate (take root). Spread the mulch over the top of the seed, immediately after you put the seed down.
Water your lawn
Ensure that the soil and mulch remain moist for a minimum of 10 days after the seed has been planted. After 10 days, you can reduce watering to 1 time per day.
Mow your lawn
You should mow your winter lawn for the first time 14-21 days after you have begun to see grass sprouting in the soil, being careful not to remove more than 30% of its length. Once your lawn is well established, resume your regular mowing schedule, and set the height of your mower as you prefer
Maintain soil health, and grass nutrition
It is imperative to feed your winter lawn as regularly as your summer lawn. Look for a fertilizer that contains a high concentration of Iron, and follow the manufacturer's instructions.
As always, if you find yourself struggling, or if you just don't want to take the time - GIVE US A CALL!