kelleynelson

Poa Supina experiment

kelleynelson
13 years ago

Hi guys,

I'm trying some Poa Supina seed this year to fill in some shady, damp areas in my yard. I overseeded TTTF two years in a row and these are the spots where the TTTF just couldn't hack it - either too much traffic, too little light, or a combination of those two worsened by moist clayish soil.

I'll try to post up some pictures. I fenced off a part of the yard to keep off foot traffic, lightly raked to loosen the soil and spread and walked-in some seed.

I also collected some soil in a cup and I will try to germinate it in my window to see how it does under near ideal conditions.

Day 0 was Saturday.

Comments (15)

  • ajer16
    13 years ago

    Hi Kelley,

    Chances are good that your PS will do great through spring and early summer. Be aware, though, that PS does not like hot weather, and does not like dry conditions. When you say the area is damp, does that include late summer and early fall?

    I played around quite a bit with PS a few years ago. Now I only have a couple patches that I left on purpose. Now that the glaciers are receding here in Michigan, it will start growing any day now. It's always by far the earliest of my grass species to get in gear.

    It's an interesting grass, but not for everyone and every location. I hope you realize it is much lighter in color than "normal" turfgrasses. Even so, it can look really good when dense and healthy and mowed fairly short--about an inch-and-a-half. There used to be some really nice plots of PS at the turgrass research farm at Michigan State University, but at last summer's field day I saw they've all been given over to newer experiments.

    Good luck, and take some pics of the process if you can!

    A.J.

  • kelleynelson
    Original Author
    13 years ago

    I see a couple green hairs in my indoor test cup after 6 days - a couple over-achievers in there.

    {{gwi:83086}}

    I don't expect the seed I put down outside to wake up for a while, it's a lot warmer inside the house ;) I'm planning on just using this in the shady/damp trouble spots in the yard. If it spreads out of those areas, so be it. It will spread there if the conditions suit it.

  • kelleynelson
    Original Author
    13 years ago

    I have some new pictures of my test seeds. Actually, I noticed just a couple of my dormant seeding areas starting to sprout outside today!

    So, as I have read, the color is pretty much a yellow green. I'm only planning on using this to cover the toughest spots in my yard, with least light and high traffic.

    I have a couple comparison photos below of the Supina compared to my TTTF. (Mixed stand in the main part of the yard, and I have some Lesco Tri-Gold that I seeded into a bare area. I'm very impressed with the dark color of the Tri Gold!

    {{gwi:83088}}

    {{gwi:83090}}

    {{gwi:83092}}

    {{gwi:83095}}

  • morpheuspa (6B/7A, E. PA)
    13 years ago

    That's nice looking! I can't wait to see the images of it as the lawn comes in.

  • itb76
    13 years ago

    Please do keep up posted! I have two shady areas that die every year. I may try to plant Supina this fall, if the fescue dies again this summer. That light green looks a lot better than dirt!

  • kelleynelson
    Original Author
    13 years ago

    I'll post some more pictures - the dormant seeded areas are coming in a little below my expectations, but I applied the seed late and didn't do any top dressing or mulching. The seedlings are about 1/2 inch tall now, and germinated maybe 2 weeks ago. I've read that Supina is slow to establish, so this isn't surprising.

    My sample cup plants are 44 days old now and benefited from living their early life in my bay window. A week ago I cut it down to two inches long when it had grown to 3 inches. The blades have grown broader and the color is a bit closer to my fescue now. I'm thinking about cutting it up and using them as 2 to 4 separate 'plugs' in my yard.

  • jimmygiii
    12 years ago

    Hey, how's that Supina working out?

  • kelleynelson
    Original Author
    12 years ago

    I put in a few test patches and also overseeded a bit in some of my shady areas.

    A good amount of it was killed in the intense heat of last summer. Everything that's been written about the water requirements of this grass is true.

    The spots with the greatest shade that stayed the most damp is where the supina bluegrass lived. This spring it was the first grass to start growing and the more mature plants are now starting to spread by stolons.

    My hope is that growing conditions will basically constrain this grass to the area of the yard where its most suited. They are the places where normal KBG and fescue don't do as well. (Damp, shady, compact soil)

    A scenario that I hope doesn't happen, is that the supina bluegrass spreads too aggressively in the cooler, moist spring and fall into the sunnier areas where it would get killed in the summer.

    I have some shady areas where my dog runs a path along my fence. I'm having some limited success with establishing poa supina in those areas. A few plants are living directly in the path, and I am getting pretty good establishment in the areas immediately adjacent. I'm hoping that the spreading action will help cover-over the path. Brand new plants are likely to get trampled before they can get established, but stolons may be more robust.

  • mike9
    11 years ago

    How is your supina doing? Has it filled in the dog runs yet?

    I like the color myself but i dont have it planted amongst other grasses. I mow mine at 3/4" how high do you mow it?
    With a record amount of rainfall and near constant moisture here in CT i havent had to worry about drought. Luckily Supina is also disease resistant.

  • grampy-gramps
    11 years ago

    Where did you get the supina seed? Is it available commercially?

  • tiemco
    11 years ago

    Poa supina is sold by many seed companies on the internet (outsidepride, seedsuperstore, hartseed, etc). It is very expensive, and because of this some people recommend blending it with something like poa trivialis, which is similar in color and blade texture, and is very shade tolerant. The reasoning is over time poa supina will dominate your stand. You don't have too of course, especially if you have a small area that needs this grass.

  • mike9
    11 years ago

    I didnt realize hartseed is located in CT. I would have called them to see if they offer it in small quanities. I bought my supina from outsidepride.

    pure
    http://www.outsidepride.com/seed/grass-seed/shade-grass-seed/poa-supina-shade-grass.html
    blend
    http://www.outsidepride.com/seed/grass-seed/bluegrass-seed/supranova-poa-supina-shade-grass.html

    I mow it at 1.3"now.

    poa trivialis is much cheaper than poa supina and its available in dark green shades too. Its very similar except it spreads slower has very poor resistance to trafic and is more disease prone, it like an inferior form of poa supina.

  • tiemco
    11 years ago

    Yes, they do sell small quantities. I bought some poa trivialis from them last fall, only 5 lbs.. I was thinking about supina, but I got a late start, plus I don't have a lot of traffic issues to deal with. I might do a fall overseed with supina, but I have a feeling the supina won't have as nice a color as the trivialis I put down.

  • mike9
    11 years ago

    tiemco do you get your soil tests done at uconn?

  • tiemco
    11 years ago

    No I haven't used Uconn, but I have a problem area where the grass is not growing like the rest of the lawn, so I am thinking of doing a sample on it and trying Uconn out.