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Too late for seeding?

One of my mowing clients has asked us to have a go at renovating the front lawn which is approximately 350 square meters and full of moss. I was thinking of scarifying most of the moss out and then applying a granular feed/moss killer . With the existing grass being very sparse,I'm assuming it's going to need overseeding but wondering if there's still enough warm weather left for the seeds to germinate? Another assumption I've made is that I'd have to wait a couple of weeks to overseed after applying the feed/moss killer so it would probably be getting towards the end of October before seeding could be done.

Am I better to scarify and apply product now, leaving the overseeding until spring or should I wait until spring and attempt the whole renovation then?

Thank you as always


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  • PRO

     I have had good results sowing shade tolerant grass seed as late as December which survived frost and snow .

    Last season October sowed some Johnsons anytime grass seed which germinated nicely and was lush by the spring . It was expensive to buy so used some loose budget grass seed in another area but not one seed germinated . 


  • PRO

    it looks like you're not far north, so plenty of time left for seeding. We're in berkshire and will be seeding until around end of october. it would be good to aerate before seeding as well. no need to wait re feed/moss control. just make sure no weed control. our order would be scarify multiple passes, aerate 2 passes, feed/moss granules, overseed.

  • I'd scarify and seed it now with a pre-seed fertiliser (no iron). Then return in Dec with a liquid iron treatment to control any residual moss. 

    • PRO

      There is no reason not to use iron. It will not affect germination. Always treat for moss after you scarify

  • PRO Supplier

    we have a winter grass seed which is a ryegrass bred to germinate at lower temperatures, but normal seed will be fine for a while yet where you are. Avoid the FWM  - the weedkiller will be of limited use - much better to mosskill, scarify and overseed along with a pre-seeder/ new seed fertiliser ...

  • I wouldn't even think about it... I've seen the results of this from Greenthumb.    You'll end up with an absolute mess for the next 6 months...... if you put a mosskiller on, it will look even worse with black areas where any moss remains after the scarifying.  The way I look at it is that at least the moss green and from a distance away, will not look too bad.  You may well get some germination but only if you're lucky with some warmish weather.... even so, it will probably look fairly sparse.  The "new" grass, if it germinates, will  end up a different colour/length from the old grass.... believe me, the customer will wish it hadn't been done. Leave it to the Spring   

    • PRO

      I think this is a fair point Geoff I have seen similar results on a clients lawn which led to the contract with the grass company being terminated by the client and then myself appointed to repair what was considered to be vandalism but to be fair if the black patches had being left until spring they would have being easier to deal with . 

      I managed to scarify 70 % by October , re seed and the seed germinated itself enough to survive until spring and filled in the patches , blending in nicely .   The remaining 30% has proved to be more problematic ( spring sowing ), still patchy even though the black moss was easier to scarify and seeded over again but the client tells me its the pigeons not so sure but its on going  although turned a corner as soon as more moisture was available . I always prefer an Autumn seeding . 

      Best lawn i ever got is my own , after removing the treated moss November I seeded the lot to use up some grass seed and left it , come spring most of the lawn was green after a hard winter , very little moss has re appeared even though my front garden is in the shade , but I do put it down to luck more than skill but different in a clients garden .

    • PRO

      Geoff are you a lawn care professional? I'm interested in your comments as they are not in line with my experiance on lots of lawns and that of many other lawn care professionals - what are they based on? Seems like bad advice to me

  • PRO

    Hmm, don't agree with this - it's far better results to scarify in the Autumn (sep and oct) and not rely on rain / weather late spring for recovering if spring scarify. We do both, but try and steer people to autumn.

  • PRO Supplier

    +1 - if you don't scarify you can't get good soil contact for the seed onto soil and if you take chances with spring weather for re-seeding it will look a mess well into May when people start using their lawns and are outside more. Grass seed needs approx 8 degrees or above to germinate which is easily achieved in most southern counties well into October and beyond. Plus if you overseed (after thorough scarification) then you'll blend the new seed with the existing grass...never just do patches for this very reason....

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