What Will You Sow

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What Will You Sow
What Will You Sow

Video: What Will You Sow

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Video: IDIOM : REAP WHAT YOU SOW 2023, February
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“About how many wonderful discoveries he prepares for us…” a visit to the store where lawn grass seeds are sold. Multicolored labels with the names of familiar and unknown companies are dazzling, eyes run up from the abundance of names of herbs and their mixtures. An inexperienced buyer, trying to play it safe, takes seeds for shade, for a sunny lawn, and for repairs. And I also want "Moorish", "meadow", "parterre", "royal" …

How not to make a mistake and choose exactly what you need?

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To create lawns in our climatic zone, only three types of grass are used mainly: meadow bluegrass (Poa pratensis), red fescue (Festuca rubra and its forms rubra, comutata, trichophilla) and perennial ryegrass (Lolium perenne). The whole variety of herbal mixtures ultimately comes down to the combination of these components.

Numerous varieties of the species listed above differ in growth rate, shape and color of leaves, resistance to diseases and adverse factors, but the basic properties inherent in wild forms remain unchanged. So, bluegrass, for example, is the most frost-resistant and at the same time heat-resistant species. Red fescue combines shade tolerance and drought tolerance. This is used by dexterous vendors, and the same mixture is sold under different names (for example, "Shade Lawn" and "Arid Lawn"). But you should not blame anyone for cheating, this is just a trick to attract a buyer.

Bluegrass or fescue?

Red fescue
Red fescue

Red fescue

The dispute about which is better, meadow bluegrass or red fescue, has been going on for more than a century and has no end in sight. Fescue is a grass for the lazy. You can forget to mow on time, you can not feed and water - she will forgive everything, squeeze her leaves-tubules from offense, turn yellow, but not die. With good care, the fescue lawn is gentle and silky, shimmering with all shades of green. There are no complaints about this lawn either in terms of density or winter hardiness. Above all praise, resistance to disease and weather surprises.

However, next to a well-groomed, vigorous carpet of meadow bluegrass, fescue looks like a poor relative at a royal ball. It is not for nothing that in the old Russian manuals, other lawn grasses are described as auxiliary, if conditions are not suitable for the bluegrass lawn or there is not enough money. Bluegrass loves care and affection. It reacts sharply to a lack of care: it thinns, loses its inherent gloss and dark malachite color, but surprisingly quickly recovers as soon as it gets what it wants. In youth, bluegrass is weak and helpless, any weed can offend him, but in skillful hands by the second or third year of life, he forms such a dense carpet that no enemy sprout will break through. It is the first of all the grasses that begins to turn green in the spring and remains so until the snow itself (a very important quality for our short northern summer), more precisely until spring,after all, it retains its color even under the snow.

Meadow bluegrass
Meadow bluegrass

Meadow bluegrass

In an open, sunny place with good care, bluegrass is immortal and is equally good at both five and fifty years of age. Another thing is in the shade, where powdery mildew lurks - the main enemy of the bluegrass lawn. Once infected, bluegrass withers and dies, giving way to fescue. However, making a good lawn with a lack of sun even from fescue is not an easy task. In general, bluegrass and fescue get along well, complementing each other at different moments of life. A drought sets in - the bluegrass hides, giving an opportunity to show off the fescue, and in cold weather, on the contrary, it covers its girlfriend, so the same lawn can look like bluegrass or fescue at different times.

The solution to the long-standing dispute is one - it should be recognized that these two grasses combine most of the qualities inherent in a first-class lawn. A mixture of them can grow in almost any conditions (except for places with stagnant water), on any soil (from clean sand to heavy clay). Depending on the desire, these herbs can be used to make a luxurious parterre and an unassuming meadow, a sports field and a lawn in a shady park. These herbs are a gift from nature, perfection itself. Any additive of other types can only solve any problems, but cannot fundamentally improve the quality of the lawn.

Biologically active additives

Pasture ryegrass
Pasture ryegrass

Pasture ryegrass

The problem of agonizing waiting for the seeds to turn into a lawn is helped by ryegrass… Most often on sale there are seeds of perennial ryegrass (aka perennial ryegrass). Rarely, one-year ryegrass is used in mixtures. The new lawn varieties of ryegrass are wonderful as they are, but, alas, they are also quite short-lived. Three-year-old ryegrass is already a deep old man. Ryegrass does not have rhizomes, due to which the evenness and density of the carpet of other lawn grasses is ensured, therefore it bushes, forming bumps, and thinns out at any density of sowing (by the way, the density of the lawn only in the first year depends on the number of seeds sown, and later - only on the biological characteristics of herbs). You will find ryegrass seeds in almost any lawn mixture - this allows producers to make seeds cheaper, and brings a feeling of quick success to the buyer, because ryegrass strives to live a bright life in anticipation of a quick death.The brightness of ryegrass is capable of overshadowing for a short time even the malachite greens of bluegrass, but soon the bumps are scattered throughout the lawn, and, sooner or later, ryegrass gives way to "lawn long-livers".

Bent grass lawn
Bent grass lawn

Quite often, bent grass seeds are added to lawn mixtures. It should be warned that this grass, very popular in England and indispensable for golf courses, can cause serious problems on the lawn. Before you dare to make a "field" lawn, you need to get to know the plant better. Polevitsa is a capricious lady, requires special care, needs frequent short haircuts, regular watering, sufficient and proper nutrition. In his youth, he has an indomitable and violent disposition, and in adulthood he becomes fastidious and painful. She is affected by many diseases and bears them hard. Gray snow mold, which, for example, is like a runny nose for bluegrass, is deadly for bent grass. Polevitsa is not friendly with other herbs. If the mixture contains even a small admixture of bent grass,in a year and a half, nothing else will remain in such a lawn except her.

Field grass shoots
Field grass shoots

By the way, "small impurity" is a very loose concept. When buying, pay attention to the composition of the mixture. It is given in percent by weight, not in seed quantity. In order to correctly evaluate the mixture, it should be remembered that the number of seeds per 1 g is different for different species. The largest seeds are in ryegrass (about 500 pcs / g), fescue seeds are almost 2 times smaller, bluegrass seeds are 6-8 times smaller, and bent grass seeds are 20 times smaller. That is, for example. In a mixture containing 95% perennial ryegrass and only 5% bent grass, the amount of ryegrass seeds will be even less than bent grass

In some cheap mixtures, you can find such herbs as foxtail, meadow fescue, white bent, timothy, hedgehog. These herbs are not suitable for a lawn. Even a small admixture of them leads to big problems, often all the work on creating a lawn has to be started anew.

Choice

Well, it seems now clear, and you can go on a hike for seeds. But an inquisitive reader may ask a seemingly naive question: “Why, in fact, do you need to buy ready-made mixtures of lawn grasses? Isn't it better to confine ourselves to one kind of grass? " Sellers answer this without hesitation, they say, the grass mixture gives a lawn of better quality, denser, more stable in all cases of life, etc. etc.

However, a professional will never give an unambiguous answer to a "childish" question, but first thoroughly study the place where the lawn will be created. Or is it really better to sow only the grass that is ideal for this area? What's the point in adding what's worse? By the way, it is known that a perfectly flat lawn can be obtained only from one type of grass. But if the lawn is created "blindly", it is never known in advance what kind of care will be provided, care will be provided, whether trees will be planted on the site, whether the illumination will change, whether there is enough water for regular irrigation, in this case it is definitely impossible to do without a mixture.

Don't be afraid to ask questions and look for answers. Consult with experts and experienced gardeners and experienced gardeners, read books. Learning from mistakes is good, but learning from others is much cheaper.

Dmitry Lyanguzov

(Based on materials from the "Stylish Garden" magazine, No. 3, 2005)

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