Correct grass seed to use to overseed Gliderport runway

Asked March 21, 2018, 8:02 PM EDT

I help with maintenance on the grass runway at the Gliderport in North Plains, Oregon. This winter we collapsed and filled the runs created by voles with landscape soil, rolled the runway, and our next step is to overseed the runway. In the past we have used a perennial ryegrass blend - 39% rio vista ryegrass, 34% fusion ryegrass, and 24% singular perennial ryegrass. We do not irrigate. Given the heavy traffic of landing aircraft, is this the best seed mixture for us to use? If not, what do you recommend? We would like to seed as early as we can, as activity increases as spring progresses. What is the optimum time for maximum germination for this years weather? Thanks Marge Brickey

Washington County Oregon lawns and turf high traffic turf

2 Responses

Considering your location I think a blend of perennial ryegrass, as you have been doing is your best option. Because you are not irrigating I would be sure to fertilize and over-seed every fall (September/October) and spring (April/May). Fertilize with a product containing high nitrogen (N), low phosphorus (P) and medium potassium (K); something like 25-5-10 at 1 lb N per 1,000 sq ft. Overseed the ryegrass at 10 lbs per 1,000 sq ft.

How soon after over seeding should I apply the fertilizer? I have 15 acres for the 2 runways and we start flying again in April. Jewett Cameron seed co suggested perennial rye blend and to seed now, which would give us two weeks before there is traffic on the runways.