restore lawn

Asked December 3, 2018, 4:23 PM EST

Hello, I am Gordy, I live in the red river valley west of grand forks ND. my sister has recently purchased a small hobby farm in Zimmermann MN Baldwin Twsp.. I will be helping her restore a 1 acre lawn which has not had very good care the last few years.. my questions center around the soil conditions in Zimmerman. I've never worked with such sandy soils.. 1, Where is the best place to get soil sample kits locally? 2, I'm used to using bulk AMS 21-0-0-8 Ammonium Sulfate here at 200 lb/acre spring and fall. will this work on the sandy soils? 3, Do the general guidelines of 3.5 pints/acre of bulk 63% 2-4D or Trimec Classic herbicides work well in the sandy soils? I only use Trimec Classic for occasional Clover control. 4, Are any amendments such as lime etc. recommended for sandburs? 5, I have great success with Rivards Sun and Shade grass seed here. Comp. 39% Boreal Creeping Red Fescue, 20% action Kentucky Blue, 20% Camas Kentucky Blue, 10% Top Gun ll Perennial Ryegrass, 10% Caddieshack ll Perennial Ryegrass.. Will this work in Zimmerman? The lawn is sunny and not watered. Any suggestions? 6, Does the sandy soil require aeration?

Sherburne County Minnesota

1 Response

Hello - thank you for your questions. Your best place to start is the soil test and then many of the answers to your questions will depend on those results. Soil testing does not require any special kit or container. Directions for collection and mailing of the sample (s) along with the form can be found at the following website. The soil test includes fertilizer recommendations as well as relative texture rating. A sample report is listed on the website so you can get an idea of the information that will be sent back. Regarding the use of herbicides, it is recommended to use the product that is labeled for the specific problem and then following the herbicide label for proper application. For preventing weed issues, the key is to improve the lawn density by good lawn care practices such as proper mowing height, leaving clippings on lawn. Here is a link where you can find more information about controlling some common weeds in MN. The type of grass seed used will depend somewhat on the the lawn will be used for (heavy traffic, light, other) as well as whether or not your sister will be putting high amounts of input in or not. Given that you say the soil is sandy, grass that is more tolerant of dry conditions may be beneficial. This would include fescues. Some recommendations for grass seed for use in MN can be found at the following websites. Aeration can benefit the lawn if the soil is compacted.