When to Plant Warm-Season Grasses and How to Maintain Them

Knowing when to plant warm-season grasses is extremely crucial for those who are living in areas where the weather is mostly warm all-year-round. Timing is everything when it comes to planting this type of grasses and making sure that they thrive well. Lawn grasses come in two different types namely, warm-season and cool-season grasses.

Warm-season grasses, as the name implies, are grasses that grow best during the warm season or when the temperature of the environment reaches 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Since they’re heat-loving plants, they thrive in the southern part of the United States where the sun is abundant throughout the year. You can commonly see these types of grasses grown on most homes with lawns, parks, and sports fields.

When to Plant Warm-Season Grasses and How to Maintain Them

When Should You Plant Your Warm-Season Grasses?

Warm-season grasses are most active during the last days of spring, throughout the summer season, and early fall. Their best growing time is during mid-summer when the temperatures are at its peak. When the temperatures start to drop, some warm-season grasses won’t die, but they will lay dormant until the temperatures reach warmer levels.

The best time to start planting or installing your warm-season grasses depends on your location. One important thing to note is that warm-season grasses germinate best in soil with temperatures ranging from 65°F to 70°F at night. This temperature usually rises to 80°F during the daytime which is the optimal temperature for the growth of your grasses.

Timing is important in planting your warm-season grasses. When planting your seeds, it’s important to give it at least 90 days to establish its roots and get the right amount of nutrition it needs before the temperature drops below 55°F or when the first fall frost comes. Seeds that are planted late won’t be able to establish strong roots and therefore, are more likely to fail to thrive throughout the colder seasons.

 

Care Tips for Warm Season Grasses

In general, warm-season grasses are low-maintenance compared to cool-season grasses. Although they grow best in warm temperatures, they can still survive cooler seasons, given that they receive the right care and maintenance. Your warm-season plants will need a different type of care for every season, so it’s important to be aware of their needs to ensure that they will continue to thrive all year long.

 

Spring

When planting or restoring your plants in spring, one of the most important things to do is to fertilize them. During winter, your grasses are going to turn brown because of the lack of nutrients as a result of the colder temperature. For this reason, it’s important to feed them with the right fertilizer (one that is rich in nitrogen) for grasses, so the nutrients that they lost during their dormancy are given back to them.

 

Summer

Summer is the time for aerating your grasses. Aeration will improve your grass’s growth because it can relieve soil compaction which allows air to pass easily through the soil and reach the grass’ roots. Summertime temperatures are the most optimal for the growth of your warm-season grasses and with aeration, growth and development for your grasses will be better.

 

Autumn/Fall

Once the fall season comes, there will be lesser sun available for your grasses, so the most important thing to remember here is to remove fallen leaves that could form a blanket over your lawn grass and block sunlight. Be sure not to leave fallen leaves on your lawn for more than a few days.

 

Winter

There’s not much maintenance to do for your lawn during the winter since your grasses will be dormant the entire season unless you live in the southern part of the country. If you’ve done the necessary maintenance in the previous season, you’ll be able to see your grasses emerge by the time the snow melts.

If you live down south, just make sure to water and fertilize your grasses now and then to make sure that they’re growing well and they maintain their lush green color. Also, make sure that they get enough sunlight.

 

Growing Grasses in Hobby Greenhouses: Is it Possible?

It is possible to grow your grass seedlings in a hobby greenhouse before transplanting them on your lawn. In fact, starting your lawn from already established grass plugs has a better survival rate than planting the seeds directly on the lawn. Here are the other benefits of growing grass or other plants inside a hobby greenhouse:

 

Better Light Distribution

Good light distribution is one of the perks of having a hobby greenhouse. When sunlight hits the glass or plastic film covering the greenhouse, it can spread the sun’s rays and distribute the light evenly throughout your plants. This ensures that your plants will get the recommended amount of sunlight every day.

 

Pest Control and Disease Prevention

Since hobby greenhouses are enclosed spaces, fewer pests will be able to infiltrate the area, and therefore, your plants. It will also provide a way for disease prevention as you can easily isolate diseased plants and keep it away from infecting the healthy ones. With fewer pests and diseases, you won’t have to use any pesticides.

 

Protection Against Extreme Temperatures

Hobby greenhouses also protect plants against the damages of extreme temperatures. If you’re still establishing your warm-season grasses and the cold season is approaching before it establishes successfully, a hobby greenhouse can be a perfect place to place your grass in so it can continue growing. Inside, you can control the temperatures through fans and heating pads thus giving your plants the perfect environmental condition.

 

When to Plant Warm-Season Grasses: Timing is Key

If you’re looking to find some answers regarding when to plant warm-season grasses, the best answer is to find the right timing. Essentially, you should be able to plant and allow your grasses to establish before the appearance of the first frost in your area. When planting, make sure that the soil temperature is between 65°F to 80°F for optimal results.

 

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How To Prevent Root Rot In Hydroponics: 3 Useful Tips

If you’re a newbie gardener who’s looking to find ways to hone your skills, you’d want to learn how to prevent root rot in hydroponics even before this problem affects your plants.

Hydroponics can be advantageous to crops in more ways than one. However, it also comes with risks of diseases, such as root rot, which can be destructive or even lethal to your plants.

Unfortunately, there are no effective methods to recover the wilted parts that were affected by the root rot once it hits your plants. The only thing you can do if you do not want this catastrophe to befall your crops is to prevent it before it happens. Read on to learn more about this subject.

 

What is Root Rot?

Root rot is a disease that attacks the plant roots and causes them to suffer decay. This usually happens when a lack of oxygen supply occurs in the substrate.

To give you an idea, think about plant roots that are submerged in water that only has a little oxygen in it. Over time, the plant suffocates and dies.

Aside from rot and decay, this disease also leads to the proliferation of fungi that are naturally present in the soil. These include Rhizoctonia, Alternaria, Pythium, Botrytis, Fusarium, or Phytophthora. As soon as fungi colonies start to grow, they tend to target the weakened roots and infect your precious plant babies.

Once the plant becomes infected, they won’t be able to take in what they need to grow – water, oxygen, and other nutrients. When this happens, it won’t be long before the plant dies.

 

What is Hydroponics?

In case you’re not aware, the term hydroponic is derived from a Latin word that means “working water”. To put it simply, hydroponics is an art that involves growing various types of plants without soil. If you’re like most people, the first thing that comes to mind when somebody talks about hydroponics would be a picture of plants with roots suspended into the water without using any type of growing medium.

 

Avoiding Root Rot in Hydroponic Systems

Detecting and identifying root rot can be tricky. When your plants get infected, their leaves and roots gradually wither until the whole crop itself dies from the lack of nutrients, which is a common symptom of many diseases.

 

What causes root rot in hydroponics?

One of the requirements in hydroponics systems is oxygen. Without it, your plants are basically on the road to death. On the other hand, lack of such is one of the major triggers for root rot, and it must be avoided at all costs.

Just like when planting in soil, you loosen up the ground so that your plants’ roots can have their required intake of oxygen. That is the case for crops grown in aqueous solutions as well. If they cannot breathe, they would not be able to grow.

Another agent for root rot is the temperature. The last thing you would want in your system are parasites that leech nutrients intended for your plants and infect the water during the process. In common terms, these fungi are called molds.

One of the best breeding grounds for these is warm and moist areas. For this reason, if the water temperature inside your reservoir is high, then you are susceptible to it. Something as minor as letting the solutions exposed to sunlight can already be a risk factor.

 

3 Useful Tips on How to prevent root rot in hydroponics

There is good news! Root rot in hydroponics can be prevented! Just follow these tips:

Tip#1: Use the right air pump

If you do not want root rot to affect your plants, you merely have to avoid its causes. If you need oxygen, keep the water bubbling by providing an air pump of appropriate size, and also give importance to proper ventilation in the room.

 

Tip #2: Maintain the temperature

The temperature should be maintained within the 70 to 80 degrees F range. Get rid of any materials that can make your system vulnerable to infections, and make sure not to disturb your crops while they are trying to grow.

 

Tip #3: Get rid of the rotten parts

However, if you failed in preventing the disease, then the rotten parts should be removed immediately. Cut them off as there is no chance of reviving them, and focus on the potential new growth instead. Fix your hydroponics system and eliminate the risks.

 

Why Give Greenhouse Gardening a Try?

Greenhouse gardening offers numerous benefits to greens aficionados who dare to take their gardening experience to the next level. Aside from acting as a shield against the effects of inclement weather, a mini, hobby, or semi-pro greenhouse can also serve as a protective layer that keeps harmful bugs and critters at bay.

What’s more, its enclosed structure allows you to control your plants’ growing conditions including the temperature, light, moisture, and ventilation of the greenhouse’s internal environment. With a controlled environment, you’ll be able to extend growing seasons and grow plants that aren’t native to your area.

 

Conclusion

No matter how well-informed you are about how to prevent root rot in hydroponics, you cannot completely eradicate the risks. Therefore, to avoid the worst-case scenario, you should be prepared to sacrifice the infected for the sake of others. While you’re at it, consider trying your hand at greenhouse gardening as well.

 

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