June 8, 2011 at 12:22 pm #162327
Pics and seed mix attached of fine fescue lawn mix in our test garden. Anybody else using this mix? What has been your experience with growth success, mowing frequency, weed invasion, etc.?
@southforkstudioJune 8, 2011 at 12:54 pm #162341Jon QuackenbushParticipant
I did a garden for my landlord while I was in graduate school in Syracuse and we used a hard fescue seed that you move maybe once or twice a year. It mounds and looks awesome, and when some of it made its way into the mulched areas it had a nice spire which was very pleasant.
When I build my house, I will use this type of seed on my property, it was gorgeous.June 8, 2011 at 12:58 pm #162340
I would love to hear from folks growing this seed mix in and around zone 7 where it’s a bit on the hot side for the fine fescues and weed pressure is pretty high.
@southforkstudioJune 8, 2011 at 3:59 pm #162339Jason T. RadiceParticipant
I have a small test container of Pearls Premium (http://www.pearlspremium.com) which is a fine fescue with really deep roots and a short unmowed height. You can choose to mow it and it grows very slowly. I don’t know how it does in a full blown lawn, but it looks impressive. Here is a video of the background story: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lmRosprVkIA&feature=related. And no, I don’t work for them.
I also like some of the domesticated Buffalo grasses from Todd Valley Farms…particilarly the Legacy variety which grows in this area well. It grows a maximum of 6″ (sometimes shorter) and again, can be mowed. It is rhizomatic so it doesn’t need watering much and self-repairs. It turns a gold color in the winter, but stays green in the summer, just the reverse of the sodded-fescues of the mid-atlantic (which are ALREADY browned out and its just June).
They also have a newer grass which may be hard to find as not many sod farms or propigators have enough grown stock yet. It is called Bella Bluegrass. It is a rhizomatic dwarf bluegrass variety that grows only 3″ TALL!! Now you can have your manicured lawn and not mow it. I’m trying to get a few plugs to try here.June 8, 2011 at 4:11 pm #162338
Jason that’s great info. I’m going to check out the links you mentioned. Expect your commissions to increase…Ha!, just kidding. -MileJune 8, 2011 at 5:28 pm #162337Jon QuackenbushParticipant
THANKS FOR THIS <—caps on from autocad. sentiment unchanged!June 8, 2011 at 5:55 pm #162336Roland BeinertParticipant
There are so many lawn alternatives out there. I like the look of the ground cover thymes like elfin thyme and woolly thyme.
I found out recntly that roman chamomile can be used as a lawn, too, although I’ve never seen an example.June 8, 2011 at 8:09 pm #162335Jason T. RadiceParticipant
Let me know if you plant any of these…I’d love to see some installations. I’m planning in putting one of these types in on a residential landscape in DC if the deal closes on the house. I know you can get RTF here (its all I spec on commercial jobs). RTF is Rhizomatic Tall Fescue from Barenbrug. Its a real heavy-duty grass used for athletic fields. Again, deep rooting so less watering, rhizomatic so it self heals and crowds out weeds, but you do have to mow it. Plus, you can get in sod. I know Central Sod in Centreville, MD grows this variety.June 8, 2011 at 11:06 pm #162334Alan Ray, RLAParticipant
check out ….. weeping love grass….
I’ts very nice on banks….June 9, 2011 at 12:03 pm #162333Rob HalpernParticipant
June 9, 2011 at 12:12 pm #162332
Thyme lawns and chamomile lawns were quite a fashion in England some decades ago.
Like everything, it takes the right conditions.
Well I have been growing a mix (sheep, hard, red, chewings) in my yard for several years. It’s a bout a 1500-2000 sf patch. I’m pusing the limits on where it should be grown as it’s in the wetest and sunniest area of our garden. What I have found is that in this climate (zone 7) it really wants to be mowed regularly (not as much as the turf). I have experimented in past years wit just letting it go and a couple things happen. It looks really cool with this windswept feel, but that has two bad results. First, it starts to suffocate itself, and second it becomes almost impossible to mow at that point because it’s all flat. You can see what that looks like in the second photo on my original post. Also what happend if I stretch out the mowings is weeds start to pop up (like black locust, mutliflora rose, etc.) and the whole things starts to look accidental. If it gets mowed every two weeks when the grass is really growing it looks great. And it’s definitely happier where it gets some shade from a large Cedar tree.But I certainly don’t feel like it should be called ‘No-Mow’ or even ‘Low-Mow’. At least not in Zone 7.June 9, 2011 at 12:13 pm #162331
How big of an area are you all thinking when you talk about Thyme lawns? There is a 100% chance that there will be a good weed crop every year. Are we going to hand weed that? -MilesJune 9, 2011 at 9:30 pm #162330Roland BeinertParticipant
I’m pretty sure most thyme lawns a fairly small, but I don’t see why there would be more weeds in a thyme lawn.June 10, 2011 at 1:51 am #162329
Roland thanks for the comment. My only point about the weeds is that in a mowed lawn, weeds are a nonissue because they get mowed off every week. In a “lawn” that is not mowed you have to deal with weeds in some way. And that means pulling if you are not mowing.June 12, 2011 at 1:19 am #162328Thomas J. JohnsonParticipant
Plus a broad leaf killer works on turf because it kills weeds and not the grass. If you put broad leaf killer on a thyme lawn you’d have a very dead lawn…
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