Grass not germinating.

Discussion in 'Lawns' started by Jocko, Jul 27, 2022.

  1. Jocko

    Jocko Guided by my better half.

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    I sowed some grass at the backend of 2020 and it did quite well. Last year I tried the same seed and it didn't germinate. This year I tried patching some bits with no luck. A few weeks ago I tried patching again. I grubbed up the earth using a three-pronged hand tool, watered the area, sowed the seed and covered it with a light layer of John Innes seed compost which I dampened. Nothing grew. I thought the seed must be at fault so I sowed some in a pot of compost and it grew wonderfully.
    Now, I know the dry conditions are not ideal for sowing grass, but I have kept the small patches and the areas around them well watered but nothing wants to grow. I think I will have to go down the pot route and plant the resulting grass out in the bare patches.
    The chap next door seeded most of his back garden at the same time and it is now thick lush grass.
     
  2. NigelJ

    NigelJ Total Gardener

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    I don't think grass seed keeps well, particularly if the humidity is high. Could be the neighbour used fresh seed.
     
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    • Jocko

      Jocko Guided by my better half.

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      He certainly did. My grass is inside its date but it has been opened. The seeds in the pot germinated great.
       
    • NigelJ

      NigelJ Total Gardener

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      These days I tend to buy fresh grass seed when I need it.
      In that case down here I'd blame the erratic weather.
       
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      • pete

        pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

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        Don't know how much you need but you can grow your own turf in large seed trays and then when it's growing well transplant it
         
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        • Jocko

          Jocko Guided by my better half.

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          That is what I think I may do. I don't need a lot, just for odd holes in "The Meadow" (where I killed off moss).
           
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          • JWK

            JWK Gardener Staff Member

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            If it's not too much you need: what I do is trim back the lawn edges an inch and use that to plant in bare patches. Cut up into chunks it soon spreads out.
             
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            • Jocko

              Jocko Guided by my better half.

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              That is a great idea. I won't miss a bit of the edge.
               
            • JWK

              JWK Gardener Staff Member

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              Eventually you get rid of the lawn, unfortunately Mrs JWK has twigged and won't let me do it anymore :smile:
               
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              • Jocko

                Jocko Guided by my better half.

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                I got myself a tub of Miracle-Gro Patch Magic. I was reading about it and it said once opened use in that season. As my old grass was over a year old I binned it. Treated a few patches this evening to see how it goes.
                 
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                • Liz the pot

                  Liz the pot Total Gardener

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                  Keep it damp in this weather and the golden rule is the larger the seed the deeper it can be planted. Plain old topsoil can’t be beat but with such warm weather it must be kept damp to see the best results.
                   
                • Clueless 1 v2

                  Clueless 1 v2 Gardener

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                  I've been watching this thread with interest because I did the same. I used old grass seed that I had kicking about, probably for several years, that I used on some bare patches. Nothing happened for about 3 weeks despite it being warm enough and I kept it moist.

                  It has now germinates, at least those seeds that the birds didn't nick. It's supposed to germinate in 7 to 10 days, so maybe old seed is just a bit slower to get going.
                   
                • Jocko

                  Jocko Guided by my better half.

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                  I am watering the patches at least once a day, sometimes twice. I had an epiphany yesterday evening. My "Meadow" never gets very green and I had the sprinkler out and I realised that the borders around the two trees and, for the most part, the border along the shrubbery, are green and lush. And these are areas that get heavily watered, particularly the young trees. Obviously, the rest of the grass isn't getting enough water.
                  I have now made myself a lawn aerator from a plank of wood with long screws through it and rope handles to pull it back out. I will walk that all over the grass so perhaps the water will get through the concrete-like top surface and reach the grass roots.
                   
                • Jocko

                  Jocko Guided by my better half.

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                  As if I did not have enough problems with my grass, the area where the grass was green and lush (semi-shade and moist) has now been destroyed. My wife thought it would be a good idea to put Growmore pellets on it. Unfortunately, she put enough for half an acre on about 10 sq metres and despite watering it in the grass is now totally burnt. Yesterday, once I noticed the damage, I flooded the entire area with water but I think I am too late. I think I will give up on grass.
                   
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                  • Clueless 1 v2

                    Clueless 1 v2 Gardener

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                    I think I'd have tried to rake as many of the pellets up as possible before watering. They'd be largely inert when dry. Soaking them would have just dissolved them into the lawn.

                    You might be lucky. It might just be superficial surface damage. The roots might be fine.
                     
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