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Welcome to the Sod Blog

West Coast Turf was founded in 1990 with the aim of providing the best sod and service in the business. Along with sister company in Arizona, Western Sod, we offer more than 30 different varieties of turfgrass, sod and stolons in California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, and around the world.

Mr. Wise Grass is our blog where our turfgrass pro Jay posts information on how to select and care for the sod that’s best for your environment and uses.  He answers common questions regarding issues surrounding grass and more technical issues that can be resolved with the right know-how.

If you’ve got a grass issue, Jay’s the answer-man!


Latest Blog Posts

 

    How to Control Mosquitoes in Your Arizona and California Lawn and Garden

    One guest you didn’t invite (and don’t want) at your outdoor events: mosquitoes. Not only a nuisance for outdoor activities, they also pose health risks due to their ability to transmit diseases. Controlling them is possible, if you follow these steps.

    Eliminate stagnant water. This is a prime breeding ground for mosquitoes and gnats. Regularly remove containers or debris that may collect water, and ensure gutters are free of obstructions. It's essential to note that mosquito larvae can mature in as little as 8–10 days, highlighting the urgency of removing all potential breeding sites. 

    Maintain a well-groomed lawn to discourage mosquito habitats. Overgrown grass, bushes, and trees create favorable living conditions for mosquitoes. Regular lawn maintenance reduces these ideal breeding grounds. Minimize shady, damp areas, and mow tall grass according to the recommended height for your grass type.

    Apply insecticide to the lawn and bushes on a monthly basis, adjusting frequency based any rainfall. This shouldn’t be an issue in arid climates like Southern California and Arizona, where summer rainfall is minimal. 

    Adjusting lighting can also deter mosquitoes and other nighttime insects, as these pests are often drawn to lights. Consider utilizing insect-repelling lighting to address this concern. Incorporating plants with strong aromas, such as mint and rosemary, into the landscape can help repel mosquitoes. Other insect-repelling plants include lavender, marigold, citronella grass, catmint, basil, sage, lemon balm, lemon thyme, garlic, and catnip.

    Use these tips to keep your outdoor parties mosquito free! For more information, visit westcoastturf.com

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    Cool Change: Transitioning to Bermudagrass for your California and Arizona Sod

    As summer approaches, more and more homeowners are choosing warm season grasses such as bermudagrass or seashore paspalum as their preferred lawn care option. Warm season grasses can thrive in hot and sunny conditions, making it ideal for areas with long, hot summers. Its deep root system allows it to withstand drought conditions and it requires less maintenance compared to cool season grasses. It is durable and can handle high traffic areas easily. When taken care of properly, bermudagrass and paspalum form a dense and lush carpet of green, adding beauty to any landscape. 

    The thought of switching from a cool season grass to warm season grass may seem difficult, but it’s entirely achievable.  The transition typically is best in late spring or early summer when soil temperatures are optimal for bermudagrass or paspalum to thrive. Before planting, it is crucial to prepare the soil by aerating, dethatching, and amending it with compost or organic matter. There are several varieties of bermudagrass to choose from and we offer Paltinum TE seashore paspalum.  , Consulting with local experts (such as West Coast Turf) is essential  to determine the most suitable options for your specific needs.. 

    Once established, bermudagrass and paspalum need regular maintenance such as mowing at the correct height, providing adequate irrigation, and fertilizing as needed to promote strong growth and root development. 

    In an era where water conservation and sustainability become more important concerns, the popularity of warm season grasses like bermudagrass and paspalum is expected to rise. Its ability to thrive in hot, arid climates while requiring minimal water and maintenance makes it an attractive option for eco-conscious homeowners who desire beautiful, sustainable landscapes. By embracing warm season grasses  and its many benefits, homeowners can create lush and green lawns that not only enhance the beauty of their outdoor spaces but also contribute to a more sustainable future for generations to come. 

    Remember, a natural grass lawn cools your living environment.   An average size lawn has a cooling effect equivalent to about 8-10 tons of airconditioning (for comparison, the average home air conditioning system is around 3-4 tons).  Natural grass also provides erosion control, water filtration, carbon sweuestration, and air purification, For more information, visit our website at westcoastturf.com

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    Tips For Mowing Your California and Arizona Sod

    Maintaining a lush, green lawn in the arid climates of Southern California and Arizona can be quite a challenge. It's totally achievable though, with the right approach. Mowing plays a pivotal role in keeping your lawn healthy and attractive. Here are some tips on the best way to keep your lawn beautiful when mowing:

    1. Choose the Right Mower: It is crucial to select the appropriate mower to achieve optimal results. For Southern California and Arizona, where lawns often consist of warm-season grasses like bermudagrass, Zoysia grass, or St. Augustine grass, consider using a rotary mower. These mowers are well-suited for cutting thicker grass types commonly found in warmer climates.

    2. Adjust Mowing Height: Maintaining the correct mowing height is vital for the health of your lawn. In hot and dry climates, it's recommended to keep your grass slightly taller to provide shade to the soil and retain moisture. Adjust your mower's cutting height to leave the grass blades around 2 to 3 inches tall. Taller grass also helps to inhibit weed growth by shading the soil.

    3. Follow the One-Third Rule: Adhere to the one-third rule that states

    you should never remove more than one-third of the grass blade's height in a single mowing session. Cutting more than this can stress the grass and make it more susceptible to drought and diseases. Aim to mow your lawn regularly to maintain a consistent height.

    4. Mow When the Grass is Dry: Mowing wet grass can lead to an uneven cut and cause clumping, which can smother the grass beneath. Additionally, wet grass is more prone to tearing, resulting in an unhealthy appearance. Therefore, it's best to mow your lawn when the grass is dry, preferably in the morning or late afternoon when temperatures are cooler.

    5. Sharpen Mower Blades Regularly: Sharp mower blades ensure clean cuts, promoting healthier grass growth. Dull blades tear the grass instead of cutting it cleanly, leaving ragged edges that are more susceptible to disease. Check your mower blades regularly and sharpen or replace them as needed to maintain optimal cutting performance.

    Alternate Mowing Patterns: Changing your mowing pattern regularly helps prevent soil compaction and encourages upright grass growth. Consider mowing in different directions each time you mow to avoid creating ruts and uneven wear on your lawn.

    6. Leave Grass Clippings on the Lawn: Grass clippings are a valuable source of nutrients for your lawn. Instead of bagging them, leave them on the lawn to decompose. This practice, known as grasscycling, returns essential nutrients like nitrogen back into the soil, promoting healthy grass growth. For more information, visit westcoastturf.com 

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    A Guide to Repairing Patches and Bare Spots on Your California & Arizona Sod

    Maintaining a lush and vibrant lawn in the California and Arizona desert areas can be challenging due to the arid climate and water restrictions. However, with the right knowledge and care, you can revive your lawn by addressing patches and bare spots effectively. Here are some practical steps to repair and rejuvenate your lawn. Southern California and Arizona are known for their hot and dry conditions, making lawncare a unique challenge. Patches and bare spots can result from various factors, including:

    • Drought Stress: Limited water availability can lead to dry and bare areas in your lawn.
    • High Temperatures: Intense heat can cause grass to wither and die, creating unsightly patches.
    • Poor Soil Quality: Many areas in these regions have sandy or clayey soil, which may lack essential nutrients.
    • Overuse of Fertilizers: Improper use of fertilizers can contribute to patchiness and bare spots.
    • Foot Traffic and Compaction: High foot traffic can compact the soil, restricting grass growth.

    Repairing Patches and Bare Spots:

    1. Watering Strategy:

    Water deeply and less frequently to encourage deep root growth.

    Invest in a smart irrigation system to optimize water usage based on weather conditions.

    1. Choose Drought-Tolerant Grass Varieties:

    Opt for grass types like Bermuda that thrive in arid climates.

    1. Soil Improvement:

    Consider using a soil aerator to alleviate compaction issues.

    1. Appropriate Fertilization:

    Use a slow-release, balanced fertilizer to provide essential nutrients without causing excessive growth. Follow recommended application rates to avoid fertilizer burn.

    1. Overseeding:

    Overseed the existing lawn with drought-resistant grass seeds to fill in bare spots.

    Ensure good seed-to-soil contact by raking the area lightly after seeding.

    1. Mowing Practices:

    Set your mower blade to the recommended height for your grass type.

    Avoid cutting more than one-third of the grass height at a time to prevent stress.

    1. Adequate Shade:

    Plant shade trees strategically to provide relief from the scorching sun.

    Use temporary shade structures for vulnerable areas.

    1. Pest and Disease Management:

    Keep an eye out for pests and diseases, as weakened grass is more susceptible. Use eco-friendly pest control methods to minimize environmental impact.

    Repairing patches and bare spots in your lawn in desert areas in Southern California and Arizona requires a holistic approach that considers the unique challenges posed by the arid climate. By implementing water-wise practices, choosing appropriate grass varieties, and addressing soil health, you can enjoy a resilient and green lawn year-round. Stay committed to regular maintenance, and your lawn will become a thriving oasis in the midst of the desert landscape. For more information, visit https://westcoastturf.com

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    Illuminate Your New Year's Eve: Southern California Garden Party Edition

    As the mild Southern California evenings grace us with their presence, take the opportunity to bid farewell to 2023 in style. Transform your outdoor space into the ultimate New Year's Eve garden party with a few simple nighttime decorating tricks. From creative lighting to reimagined Christmas decorations, here's how to craft the perfect atmosphere for a night of socializing, hors oeuvres and cocktails, and dancing under the stars.

    1. Set the Stage for Comfort: Before diving into the decorations, ensure your guests have a cozy outdoor space by incorporating heating elements like portable fire pits and heat lamps. Opt for lush, cold-activated superior fescue sod to delineate your party area and walkways, providing a resilient foundation for your festivities.
    2. Hanging Decor Magic: Utilize the vertical spaces in your backyard for festive decorations. Hang star garlands, streamers, curled ribbons, and glittery Christmas bulbs from tree branches, decks, outdoor staircases, or even your backyard tool shed. Embrace the charm of irregular placement to weave together the existing elements of your outdoor haven.
    3. Elegance in Floral Pots: Add an air of sophistication with cut flowers in decorative pots that match your chosen color theme. White roses in glass bowls with gold foil accents exude classic elegance. Scatter these floral arrangements at the edges of your party space or make them the centerpiece of guest tables for an extra touch of charm.
    4. Reimagined Christmas Decor: Give your Christmas decorations a second life in the backyard. Revitalize a Christmas tree with metallic tinsel, glittery ornaments, and luminous garlands. Illuminate tree trunks, arches, and awning poles with Christmas lights or create a magical ambiance with string lights and paper lanterns. Transform a Christmas wreath with quirky elements like pinwheels for a playful touch.
    5. Creative Outdoor Lighting: Soft lighting is key to maintaining a festive and relaxed atmosphere. Reuse Christmas lights and explore other inventive options. Hang candles in mason jars from tree branches, use votives to outline walkways, or employ tiki torches to corral your guests and create a warm glow that lasts well into the night.
    6. Enchanting Archway Designs: Welcome your guests with festive archways that set the tone for celebration. Cover them in balloons matching your color theme, string lights, or drape long "hair" tinsel to add an element of mystique. Make your guests feel like VIPs as they step into your transformed garden party space.

    With these imaginative decorating ideas, your New Year's Eve garden party is guaranteed to be a memorable affair. Embrace the enchanting ambiance of a beautifully adorned outdoor space and usher in the new year surrounded by the warmth and beauty of your transformed garden. Cheers to a night of celebration, under the stars and in good company! For more information visit: http://westcoastturf.com

    Happy New Year!

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