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Frequently Asked Questions

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CRABGRASS CONTROL

Q: How much lawn does your crabgrass product cover?

A: Our 50 lb bag of crabgrass prevention covers 10,000 sq ft. It is important that you apply the product accurately, by knowing how much actual turf you have (your “sward size”).


Q: Why does THE Turf Plan(R) require two applications of crabgrass herbicide? 

 A: Crabgrass will start to emerge when the soil warms up, but it will germinate ALL summer long, if rainfall and/or irrigation is supplied. Even though we’re using the best crabgrass herbicide on the market (dithiopyr = Dimension(R)) expecting season long control of crabgrass control from a single application of herbicide is pure folly. Our results speak for themselves, because our customers RAVE about how good their crabgrass control is. They tell us that the other products they use don’t work, as early as June!


MOLE CONTROL

Q: I cannot catch a mole with my old-fashioned Victor Harpoon Trap. It trips, but I never catch the dang things. What am I doing wrong? 

 A: The harpoon traps work OK, but you really have to learn how to set them properly. There are a few tricks you need to know. We can show you how to do this, but the newest traps, called the MOLE ELIMINATOR is sooooo easy to set (you just step on it) that we think you’ll have better results with it. Come on in and we’ll prove it to you.


VOLE CONTROL

Q: What plants to voles eat? I’ve seen hosta leaves halfway pulled down into a little hole–is a vole doing that?

A: The answer to your second question is YES! Voles are subterranean little rodents. They make holes in the ground, no bigger than a quarter in diameter. They frequently share mole runs or take over mole runs. They’ll cut leaves off at the base, drag them to their hole, and then munch on them safely in the cover of their tunnel. They absolutely love hostas and daylilies, but they’re known to eat all different kinds of plants. One customer brought pictures in last winter of ‘Knockout’ Roses, that had virtually no roots. The voles ate them up through the winter.


ZOYSIAGRASS

Q: My zoyisagrass lawn is about 25 years old and has not been power raked for about 15 years and aerated in about 3 years. I have begun getting a lot of brown dead patches in the lawn and was wondering what is the problem. I am considering power raking and aerating and over seeding very shortly. Would this be the recommended way to go at this time? And then use your warm weather grass plan.

 A: Zoysiagrass in STL has been hit hard with a disease, called “zoysia patch,” which is essentially the same disease organism as brown patch on turf type fescue. Its spread is aggravated by mismanagement! Too much water, not dethatching enough (your primary cause), and late applications of nitrogen (after August 15th) are some of the main contributors to incidence and occurence of the disease. 1st) don’t think about dethatching zoysiagrass until mid- to late May. It must be almost 100% green so that it can recover quickly after you tear it up. 2) The warm season plan, in very simple terms is STEP 1: Crabgrass Control in Early May, STEP 2: Grub Control mid-June, STEP 3: Fertilizer in mid-July, STEP 4: Fertilizer in mid-August.


BROADLEAF WEED CONTROL

Q: I have a lot of chickweed growing in my repaired turf. Do I need to spray it now?

A: Yes, you should plan to spray it as soon as you can find a nice, sunny, calm day, when the temperatures exceed 55F. It is important to slow this weed down, because just like turf, it’s about to explode as soon as the temperatures warm up. Spraying it sooner than later may not kill it dead, but it will stunt it severely, giving the baby turf a chance to compete better. Plan on spraying a second, and even a third time, if necessary this spring. There is no reason to tolerate any broadleaf weed in your lawn!


SWARD SIZE CALCULATIONS

Q: OK, my neighbor follows your advice, and his lawn is excellent. He told me that I needed to calculate how big my lawn is, and warned me that you might chew me out if I don’t know. Is this true? Why is this such a big deal, because a bag of Scott’s TurfBuilder for 15,000 sq ft works perfectly on my lawn.

A: Wow, that’s a mouthful. 1st, we won’t chew you out, but you may see disappointment in our non-verbal communications, for your not knowing how much actual turf you manage. However, we WILL chew you out down the road, if you complain about less-than-stellar results, and you don’t know how big your sward is. Thus, your neighbor must have suffered from this in the past. So learn from his/her mistake. It’s a HUGE deal because everything we do is about proper application of the dose (whether it be nitrogen, crabgrass herbicide, grub control, fungicide, etc.) of the product being applied. If you overdose the lawn you might cause damage. If you underdose the product it won’t work correctly. Then you’ll blame us for your mistake. So let’s avoid all that malarkey. Finally, your claim of “perfect” application of an over-sold retail product is that it’s simply a coincidence, if you don’t have between 14,000 and 16,000 sq ft of turf. We can take ANY product, and find a setting to fit our lawn, but that doesn’t make it ACCURATE!

(Note: This blog was originally posed on Feb. 19, 2013)