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Yellow edges on turf after 9 days...

Discussion in 'Lawns' started by FH1, Apr 14, 2012.

  1. FH1

    FH1 Apprentice Gardener

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    Hello everyone,

    My first post and sorry it's a problem!

    I laid some turf 9 days ago and have been keeping it watered. It is taking root and I am watering it to the point where the soil underneath is always moist.

    However, all the edges are going a bit yellow and there are patches here and there.

    Also there is lots of corse meadow grass with seeds (I don't seem that worried about this? would you be?)

    Picture attached... any ideas? It's been raining a bit and I have been out for hours with a watering can... more water??? Thank you very much!:ThankYou:
    photo.JPG
     
  2. Axl

    Axl Gardener

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    Hi FH, it looks in pretty good shape. The yellow looking strips are natural where turf meets turf, they'll knit together in no time and you won't be able to determine where any joins are so don't worry about those.

    It would be worth giving the lawn a high cut on a dry day assuming you don't have a flymo or such like. Just take it slowly and ensure you're not catching or disturbing the turf as you go.

    If you have a hover mower you can still cut now but just be extra careful as hover type mowers have a habit of lifting turf edges.

    Can't see any obvious patches in the photo but any on a new lawn will soon go once regular mowing commences. The lawn needs to be cut to stimulate growth and once you're in the swing of it you shouldn't have any concerns.

    It may be time to ease up on the watering now. Once new turf is knitting well it's time to move on to deep watering to encourage the roots to search lower which results in healthier and more drought resistant grass. Just gauge how much moisture the lawn is naturally getting and water accordingly, maybe in two days from now, then wait another three and so on.

    Taper the watering off over a period of a few weeks and cut when necessary and before you know it you'll be done.
     
  3. Kristen

    Kristen Under gardener

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    I have a different view on mowing. I definitely would not cut the grass after the turf has only been down for 9 days. I would want the roots solidly attached to the soil underneath - such that I could not pull up a turf at all. Otherwise there is a risk that the turf is lifted, which will break the roots and then back-to-square-one.

    I would roll the grass - e.g. using a mower with a roller. Nothing too heavy - so not a roller for compressing tarmac! but that will help ensure that the turf is in good contact with the soil underneath. 9 days may be a bit early for that, but I think at about 14 = 21 days would be a good time.

    I would water with a sprinkler for 30 minutes every other day initially, then reduce to every 3rd day, then 4th day, and so on. No need if it rains decently, and you can delay longer if there is no strong sunshine / high temperatures between waterings.

    Personally I would not have expected to see the edges of the turf go yellow. Might be that they were not butted up enough, and have now shrunk (can you see gaps between the turf?)

    "there is lots of coarse meadow grass with seeds (I don't seem that worried about this? would you be?)"

    If I had bought quality turf I would be. Depends what you want the lawn for - if its a football pitch for the kids you'll need some rougher grasses in it to make it harder wearing. If you want a snazzy bowling-green look then you don't want any at all. Something in the middle ... then a mix should be fine - cut regularly with a cylinder mower will keep coarse grasses in check.
     
  4. FH1

    FH1 Apprentice Gardener

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    Hello Axl and Kristen,
    Thank you so much for your responses... I have attached a close up of the turf. On this you can see the edges and also some patches. I think they are getting better, but as I have never done this before I just wanted a more experienced opinion!

    Oh and the edges are butted up...

    Thank you again... :)

    photo.JPG
     
  5. Axl

    Axl Gardener

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    That's a much better photo. Those joins look fine. When you're mowing regularly the edges won't exist.

    Who was your turf supplier?

    This is advice from Rolawn on mowing newly laid lawns. It's up to you if you think you can mow carefully now. Does your hover mower have blade spacers for height adjustment? If not the longer you leave it until you cut for the first time the more grass you'll be cutting off, which is what you don't want.

    "
    General Comments

    Mowing your turf is the single most important activity you can do to maintain a beautiful lawn. Grass is dynamic and responds to changes. Your turf will get used to how much you cut off and being cut to the same height. If you dramatically lower the height of cut or let the grass grow too long before cutting it, you can injure or even kill your lawn. Dark green leaves can withstand the intense rays of the sun, but those parts of your turf near the soil, which are shaded by the leaves, are very sensitive to the sun. Therefore, if you scalp your turf and expose those tender tissues near the soil, the sun may scorch your turf. Scorched turf will turn yellow, grow slowly and may even die. In general the longer the turf, the deeper the roots. However, if lawns are mown higher than 20mm, there will be sufficient roots.
    How soon after your new turf is laid should you mow it ?

    Most people wait too long! Your Rolawn Medallion turf was conditioned to a cut height of 25mm (1") and Minster Pro to 12mm (1/2"). With new Rolawn turf you may need to mow it 2-3 days after it is laid. If this is the case, make sure that the turf is well rooted before you use a rotary mower, because the draught created by a rotary mower could lift the turf. You should try and mow your turf whenever it is over 30mm long.
    How high should you mow your turf?

    The actual height of the turf is a matter of preference. However, if most amenity lawns are mown shorter than 25mm it will weaken the turf, allow more weeds to encroach and in general, require more care. Rolawn mowed your new turf at 25mm because it provides a high quality appearance. You can raise the height of cut if you want to. If you let your lawn get much higher than normal, raise up the height of cut. Then, each time you mow bring it down by a third, until it is the height you want."​
     
  6. FH1

    FH1 Apprentice Gardener

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    Thank you...

    I got the turf from a local garden centre... It was moist and I laid it same day. It had a thick layer of soil with it and I laid it on new top soil.

    I have a bosch rotak 34 mower that allows up 7cm. I like my grass long so will it be ok if I leave it for another week? I have the one-third rule. So if I want it 4cm I can set it to 6cm. Do you think that will be ok.

    Regarding watering, if the soil under the turf is damp, shall I leave watering for a day. Eg, I watered this morning and despite the sunny spells it's still damp underneath.

    I am wondering if over watering could be causing the yellow patches?


    Thank you again...
     
  7. Axl

    Axl Gardener

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    For some reason I thought you had a hover mower. If you like the grass longer than it is now then just wait until it's slightly over the height you want then give it a trim. So if you want it to 4, set the mower to that height and make sure it's cut before the height of the grass is 6. If the blades are longer than that when you first cut it just make sure you don't take more than a third off each cut and gradually lower the height setting until you get to the height you want.
     
  8. Kristen

    Kristen Under gardener

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    I recognise Rolawn as the Premerier Brand, but their advice seems contradictory in superficial to me

    "Most people wait too long!"

    OK, I'm probably guilty of that!

    "With new Rolawn turf you may need to mow it 2-3 days after it is laid."

    "may" need to? It would be helpful to know what the circumstances are that would encourage, or discourage, such an early cut

    "If this is the case, make sure that the turf is well rooted before you use a rotary mower"

    Surely there is absolutely no way that newly laid turf will be "well rooted" in "2-3 days"?, or even a week and probably two for that matter.

    "You should try and mow your turf whenever it is over 30mm long."

    Wouldn't that be the better advice? i.e. :

    "Your turf is delivered cut at 25mm, mow it when it gets to 30mm (unless you want it longer) provided that it is well rooted (more especially if you are using a rotary mower)"

    wrt height and cutting frequency: my aim is to never remove more then 1/3rd of the height of the grass - so if it has grown long I don't cut it back in just one go.
     
  9. Axl

    Axl Gardener

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    I think from your posts I've read I had the same train of thought as you? Ignore all the prep and the quality of turf, assuming the ground is finally prepped and prepped well and the turf is premium. I'd get the turf down and concentrate on the watering and the knitting of the turf then take the growth back down to the required height once the lawn was fully established.

    Assuming the final cut height is going to be average height and not left longer as some people prefer what I do now is get the turf down then aim to cut when I know I'm not going to dislodge or lift any turf. Cutting newly laid turf encourages strong root growth. I think Rolawn are referring to the fact that in ideal conditions their turf can and does take root quickly and will grow rapidly once down. They don't want people to let their new lawn get to three inches then butcher it back down to an inch as that's only going to lead to problems and there are a lot of people who will do this. Every spring lots of lawns turn yellow as people give their lawn what they think is the best treatment and cutting as low as their mowers allow!

    Cutting regularly at the same height the turf has been conditioned to is much more beneficial to establishment I find and that's what I do now. I've lost track of how many square meters I've laid and never had a problem once.

    I get what you're saying though and you're re written paragraph above seems less ambiguous and easier to follow than their blurb.
     
  10. FH1

    FH1 Apprentice Gardener

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    Ok that all makes sense. I think I am set for a few wet days here in Morden and the grass isn't as long as I would like it... So I am going to wait till Saturday. hopefully I will cut down to 4 or 5cm. Mower goes to 7cm.

    I presume you should only cut it when it's dry right?

    Anyway, you must be getting sick of these stupid questions!!! I really really really appreciate your time and advice.

    Thank you
    FH
     
  11. Kristen

    Kristen Under gardener

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    I'll send them my bill then!

    Always amazes me that football pitches can be re-turfed mid-season ... and I am sure that the sort of turf that comes on a huge many-tonne roll and is laid by machine is probably ready to be mowed the same day!! but those folk have all the necessary specialist equipment.

    Although I have always been "late" to make a first cut on new turf (by Rolawn's definition) it has then taken me the rest of the season to get it down to a manageable height - it has been so chock full of Nitrogen, on delivery, that by the time I have made my first cut it is already "long", and taking 1/3rd off then waiting 5 days or so I never managed to get it any shorter! (and didn't have time to cut it every couple of days ...). Mine you ... I didn't fork out for Rolawn Best Turf either!
     
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