Are you using BOBSeed??

Fall is filling the air and I know everyone is starting to get anxious about getting their winter ryegrass planted. Rest assured that the season is just beginning and is optimal between October 1st and November 1st. We are still a little warm right now at night to see excellent results from the ryegrass but it is possible to get a good stand of grass quickly if you’re willing to shut down your bermudagrass a little early.

Sod farms and golf courses typically have to seed early because of demand and this is done by using growth regulators such as Primo to slow down the bermudagrass or paspalum. This is completely unnecessary unless you absolutely have to have a brand new lawn up before the middle of October. Keep in mind that if you don’t slow down the competition you pay for it later in the season because the bermudagrass/paspalum is still actively growing and will fill in the ryegrass voids. I realize that some of you won’t have a choice in the timing of overseeding, but if you do have a choice it is best to wait.

Today’s blog is going to give you 10 easy steps on how to overseed and establish a great lawn for the winter. I have also attached a short video on doing so.

Let’s talk today about how you can slowly get your lawn ready for seeding here in the next couple weeks. By now everyone should know that having excessive growth is a bad thing going into the fall if you plan on overseeding so make sure to cut off all fertilizer applications that will promote growth. You will start to lose a little color in your turf but that is okay because you want it lean going into the overseed season.

Why BOBSeed and not just another brand?

BOBSeed is a sod quality seed meaning it exceeds all seed standards in the market and has over a 97 percent germination rate with zero weed seed. There are so many products on the market now that have mulch, seed, and fertilizer in one but what they don’t tell you is that the seed is a blend of several varieties often including annual ryegrass, fescue, and other mixes. BOBSeed was designed for homeowners, landscapers, and golf course superintendents to have the same high quality seed we use on our sod farms at their location. If you buy sod from West Coast Turf and want to ever spruce it up or need to replace some small areas isn’t it nice to know that your seed will be a perfect match?

There are thousands of different ryegrasses on the market but you will quickly notice most of these companies are not local and give confusing information on the seed bags for the rates. You will see bags that say treats between 4000-10,000 SF for overseeding your lawn. Remember that all perennial ryegrass needs to be put down at 8-10 pounds per 1000 SF and the lighter rate they give is meant for the Midwest. Wording is tricky in this industry so be careful and remember to buy high quality. If you buy a low quality seed with just 70 percent germination you need to apply at least 30% more seed so what did you actually save?

What warm season grasses can be overseeded with BOBSeed?

All warm season grasses including paspalum can be overseeded using the BOBSeed. It is designed for use on your tifgreen, tifway, EZ-Turf, midiron, common bermudagrass, paspalum, and of course BOBSod.

So what can you do this weekend that will get your lawn ready to go for the fall?

One to two weeks before you’re ready to overseed, increase the height of your lawn by 30-40 percent. This is giving you more leaf tissue and open up the grass for the seed to get into the plant.

1. You will want to rent a verticut and set it at the 1/2 to ¾ depth. Take out the thatch and dead material until you are left with approximately ½” of thatch. If you have any more than this it harbors insects, impedes water and fertilizer penetration. If you have a huge thatch buildup you have probably had some watering issues this summer and that directly impacted your drought tolerance.

2. Now that you’ve opened up the canopy and leaf tissue it is time to make the first scalping of the year. Next you will lower your mowing height one setting and scalp down the leaf tissue. You are not trying to scalp the grass down to the ground because this will result in a poor stand of grass for next year. You want to save some of the energy of the plant so it can come back strong in the spring. You will drop the height one more setting so you are just below your mowing height from a week ago and get a second scalp on the lawn to clean it up. This often results in the closing of the turf canopy and a second vertical cut is often necessary to open the grass plant back up. Once you have made the second vertical cut, mow up all the clippings and blow off any excess material from the grass. You lawn should have an open canopy so the seed can fall down into the thatch layer. the open turf canopy is way more important than having it scalped down too low.

3. Clean up any extra clippings and when the canopy is good and open it is time to add your starter fertilizer. I recommend using a Soil Burst 5-15-10 at a rate of 9 pounds per 1000 SF. Each container is 9 pounds and it comes with a built in shaker for easy application. You can find this at several PHX/TUCSON ACE Hardware stores, through or

4. Get your BOBSeed perennial rye seed out and have your spreader calibrated to drop 10 pounds of seed per 1000 SF. You will start with the perimeter of the lawn and drop the seed at a ½ rate two directions. I advise having someone follow you while you seed with some paint and mark out where the seed has fallen so you don’t overlap or miss an area. After the edges are complete you will then switch to your rotary spreader and seed the middle of the yard at ½ rate two directions. Again the total rate is 8-10 pounds per 1000 SF so you will be putting out 4-5 pounds at a time. This ensures the grass comes up in corn rows and you have not missed any areas.

For those of you who have a yard larger than 1000 SF check out the new 25 pound BOBSeed burlap bags that are closeable with the ties and the seed is safe inside a plastic liner in the bag for later this year or next year.

25 pound burlap BOBSeed

5. Turn on your water for 3-4 cycles per day for 5-7 minutes. You are just trying to keep the seed moist throughout the day and free from drying out. This will be the irrigation cycle for the first two weeks until the grass has grown up to an inch. At this point you can gradually reduce some of the daily cycles and get it down to one long cycle early in the morning.

6. At the 10-14 day mark apply your second fertilizer. I like to use a balanced fertilizer that will help keep the grass growing and the root system developing such as Soil Burst 7-7-7.

7. You may be able to mow your grass before the second fertilizer application but if not, you will do it a couple days after it has worked itself into the soil. This is a longer cut and you are just giving the grass a haircut. Ideally this cut will be made to the grass in the afternoon when it has had a chance to dry down a little.

8. At the 3-4 week mark apply your third fertilizer application. You want to do this before we receive our first frost which is generally right around Thanksgiving. A good fertilizer in this situation is Soil Burst 16-0-4. This will both get your grass growing and allow the ryegrass to start to tiller and get healthy. If you wait till after the frost you will often lose color in your ryegrass and get yourself stuck behind the 8 ball.

9. You should be mowing 1-2 times per week after the lawn is established and gradually taking it to your desired mowing heights.

10. Most of you will have your lawn up and established a couple weeks before we receive a frost so it is always a good idea to get another fertilizer application down right before this happens, usually in mid November. I like to use a product that will sustain a good root system and also keep color once the frost hits. On our farm we switch over to Soil Burst 4-0-6 to get the grass winter hardy and maintain good color.

*** It is very important to use the right amount of seed. I have seen several companies advertise that you can get 20,000 SF out of a 50 pound bag of seed. If you read the directions on the back of the bag it clearly states this is for the northern states. These labels can sometimes be confusing so be careful. The BOBSeed is sold in convenient 10 pound buckets and 50 pound bags that are perfect for a home lawn and again it is seeded at 8-10 pounds per 1000 SF of lawn. You can pick it up at several PHX/TUCSON ACE Hardware locations, Silverbell Nursery or directly through us at or Make sure you are buying a high quality perennial ryegrass seed with a minimum of 96 percent germination and zero weed seed.***

Remember that it is very important for the health of your lawn to not get overly aggressive with the scalp and make sure you use good products. There are just too many variables out there and so much hype about certain items but what they forgot is to add enough quality seed and fertilizer to the bag to make your lawn beautiful. I have attached a video for you to look at that has all the steps I just talked about. You’ll be able to see why the height of the grass is not as important as having an open turf canopy.

Check out my video here:

Want to know more about how easy it is to use Soil Burst fertilizers, here is a little video:

When will overseeded sod be available?

West Coast Turf will start rolling out our winter lawns in mid October and yes it will have been seeded with BOBSeed.

Enjoy the cooler temperatures and let me know if you have any overseeding questions I may not have covered.