We may be just getting into winter here in Maryland, but some are already thinking about prepaing to seed in the spring. There are so many things to do to prepare for the new season. It’s time to start planning out your garden, determining if you need to make changes to your landscape design, and getting your seeds ready to germinate.
As you look out the window at your yard, are you wondering how early is too early to seed in the spring? The brown patches of grass and bare spots full of mud after the snow has melted are an eyesore for many.
Unfortunately, Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow as he came out of his hole. So we have at least six more weeks of winter with which to contend.
That doesn’t mean we can’t make plans for the spring that will eventually come our way. One of the challenges of living in Maryland is our hot and cold overlapping climate puts us in the transition zone. It makes it harder to determine the best time in spring to begin seeding.
Why Timing and Seed Choice Matter
If you seed too early, you risk the soil being too cold or dealing with rain and ground saturation. Your seeds can end up rotting and not germinating, and you’ll be left with those same brown, and bare spots come spring.
If your goal is a thick, lush lawn during the summer, the type of grass seed you use is just as important as timing. We live in the transition zone. There are a few grass types that thrive in this climate.
Three types of grass stand out as being tolerant of the Maryland climate. Those are:
If you have green grass in your yard throughout the winter, you likely have one of these grass varieties. As the summer gets hotter, these grasses need extra water to keep from burning up and frying in the scorching sun.
Because these are cool-season grasses, they do best when planted in late summer or early fall. However, if you want to seed in the spring, wait until the soil temperature is at least 45 degrees. Soil takes much longer to warm than air, so you may look at late April or even mid-May until you’re able to seed.
If you have more brown than green grass right now, then you have warm-season grass. The most popular varieties to grow successfully in Maryland are Bermuda grass and Zoysia grass.
Zoysia grass is more cold-tolerant than Bermuda grass, with Meyer and Zenith cultivars being the variety of choice. As for Bermuda grass, Yukon and Riviera cultivars are more favorable in this part of the transition zone.
When planting warm-season grasses, the best time to start is when air temperatures are a minimum of 60 degrees, with soil temperatures at 50 degrees or higher. That means it will be well into May, weather-dependent, before you have optimal temperatures for warm-season grass germination.
Take the Guesswork Out of Seed Germination
Don’t want to have to worry about soil temperatures and optimal pH balance? Would you rather see a lush, green lawn without the maintenance and upkeep required?
The 410 Lawn Guy can handle all your grass needs, from seeding to cutting to landscaping. We also take care of other outdoor project needs, including retaining walls, decks, gutter cleaning, and more.
Why not get some of those things off your To-Do list without having to do the work yourself? Call the 410-LAWNGUY (410-529-6429) in Gambrills, Maryland, and get on our schedule before the busy season begins.