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Landscaping expert talks effects of rain, lawn seeding schedule

Posted at 4:36 AM, Oct 16, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-16 09:01:01-04

Normally, showers in the Valley of the Sun are something to celebrate.

But, with the consistent downpour, we are finding the grass is not always greener on the other side -- in a more literal way. 

October 1st is generally when you or landscapers start over-seeding your lawn. It starts by scalping the grass short and covering the Bermuda grass with rye-grass. 

Over-seeding is our attempt to keep our lawns green in the colder temperatures. 

Rye-grass is known to do better in the winter and will help keep the color. 

The problem though is that over-seeding at the start of the month, like landscapers suggest, was made nearly impossible as the first week and many days after ended with huge amounts of rain soaking the soil. 

Eli Hall, owner of AMS Landscaping, said if you already attempted to put that rye-grass in already, get ready to start that lawnmower up again. 

"It's great that you got it in early, if you did," Hall said. "But, because of all the rain that we got, as you can see here, this Bermuda grass that we're standing right here behind me - the grass started to grow. So, you're going to have a mixture of some of your Bermuda in with the rye-seed."

So, should you take action at all given our current forecast?

Hall said do not lose hope to Mother Nature just yet. Depending on how much rain we get, that could still mean successful over-seeding. 

"Well, the seed needs to remain moist during germination," Hall explained. "So, the rain can be okay as long as there is not too much flooding or pooling. There is probably going to be bare areas where the water might erode the seed and you might have to add more seed later. But, that's pretty traditional even if we didn't have any rain."

Hall also said that you can cover the grass with a thin layer of mulch. It is more time-consuming and a bit more expensive, but Hall said it will help start the germination process more quickly and will pay off in the end.