ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Cool season member lawn journals
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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
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Location: Huntington Beach, CA
Grass Type: Kikuyu(rear) & PRG(front)
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ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

We are approaching a year in our new place, and I have been learning and taking care of a mostly Kikuyu/Bermuda mix lawn in the back yard. I wanted to give a go with the current grass, and use it for an opportunity to learn before doing a full renovation. I have not done much extra in the front yard as the Kikuyu/St Augustine/PRG mix seems to look decent and better than most in the neighborhood with just a little extra love. I was surprised to see the little bit the PRG is still doing well through the summer. The front parkway area has not done very well.

Being in the transition zone, I have the option to do a cool season grass too. I have liked seeing the PRG results from others on the forum, both as an overseed and a single grass type. We are coastal, so I think I have a decent shot at keeping PRG looking good year round as it is very rare to have temps over 90 and even rarer to have a hard freeze.

This front parkway section has not faired very well, it is mostly Kikuyu and Bermuda. But since I left it long to match the Kikuyu/St Augustine mix in the front lawn, it does not look very good. It is also horribly uneven, with an odd mound and hole from where they removed a 60' pine tree and replaced it with the current tree a few years ago before we moved in.

So the plan is to follow Cool Season Renovation Guide, level it, and go with SS9000 PRG. The area is about 150sqft, so this will be a good practice to see what kind of results I can get. If I can keep it looking good through next summer, I would consider a renovation for the rest of the front lawn to match.

Seed down date is planned fro 10/2 and I just ordered the seed.

Before pics:
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Last edited by ShadowGuy on Wed Sep 01, 2021 6:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2020 2:00 pm
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
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Mower: McLane 20" Reel
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikmuda to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

A little ahead of schedule. I decided to kill off the grass early and then scalped to 1” to get rid of most of the debris. It’s been about a week since the first kill and I have sprayed again to get what was greening up. Today I dug up half the area and removed the turf. I am trying to save most the soil, so I am moving the cut up dead sod to a tarp and letting it dry out and shaking out the dirt to reuse. Since I am reusing the same dirt, I expect I will probably get some Bermuda or Kikuyu coming back. I still plan on getting some new topsoil and sand to level the top 2-3”. I just hope it will be in the next 5 weeks so I can kill it before the seed goes down. Planning to put seed down mid September now.

I figured out why I had humps on either side of the tree. When they replaced the tree years ago the just laid sod on top of the damaged sod.

Halfway there to removing the old grass.

Image

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Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2020 2:00 pm
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikmuda to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

Shortly after my last update, I finished removing the old turf and did a rough leveling/fallowing with the existing topsoil. A week later, I had some bermuda/kikyuyu come back and hit it with Gly. It has been another week, and I have even more bemuda and kikuyu coming back. I have been watering as normal and encouraging growth.

This weekend, I did a second round of leveling as the watering has caused settling, and I did a bit of compaction work with a half sheet of plywood and my bodyweight.

This week, I have another round of gly planned and to bring in a little bit of sand and topsoil for a final leveling before seed down. 3 weeks until seed down.

Don't mind the grass in the front, I had to do a mini scalp HOC reset, as I was maxing out my rotary height. It is still recovering.


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Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2020 2:00 pm
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikmuda to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

I am a bit ahead of schedule and I am thinking of bumping up my seed down date to next weekend.

Today I leveled the parkway with a 80/20 sand top soil.

I also decided to overseed the rest of the yard, so it will match. I cut down the kikuyu and St. Augustine to 1.25 inches with the rotary. Then I used a thatch rake across all 1000sqft. I need to get a SunJoe, that was rough.

Tried to go lower with my McLane, but it was bogging down and jamming up the reel. I think going from 1.25 to .875 was too much, especially with all the runners. Ran out of time today, but I still need to edge/ trim and run the bagger across it a few more times to pick up more debris.


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Last edited by ShadowGuy on Wed Jan 05, 2022 3:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2020 2:00 pm
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikmuda to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

Seed Down!

I decided to seed the full reno area in the parkway today. I was running out of reasons to wait, since I fixed the broken sprinkler head. Good thing I did. I realized I had only bought a 5lb bag of seed. Only needed 1.2lb of seed for the 150sqft of parkway at 8lb/k, but it only left me with only 3.8lbs of seed for the other ~850sqft of the front lawn. I thought I had ordered a 10lb bag rather than 5lbs.

The 3.8lb of seed would be at the minimum lb/k amount, but I wanted a thicker overseed as I really thinned out the existing turf. I ordered a 10lb bag and hopefully it will be here in a week or so.

Raked, spread seed, raked again, pressed in with my feet, then spread peat moss.

Image

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Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2020 2:00 pm
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

Germination has begun 18hrs after seed down.

Image
Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
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Location: Huntington Beach, CA
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

Even though I had some early sprouts, I am calling today germination day, day 5.


Image


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Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2020 2:00 pm
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

Overseeded the front yard today with 8lb per k of PRG. It will be about a week behind the parkway reno that is growing quickly.



Image
Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
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Location: Huntington Beach, CA
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

It has been 5-7 days after germination and the grass was pushing 1.5 -2". I know I wanted to start seeding the thinner areas, but I didn't want the older grass getting too tall. I decided to use my reel mower set to 3/4" to trim the grass. I know it was earlier than most, but I was beyond the 1/3 rule and didn't want it to be more drastic.

After the mow, I seeded the thin areas with a mix of peat moss and seed, and then put down some starter fertilizer (18-24-6) to help the new grass bounce back. I didn't post it, but I also put down some Propiconazole earlier in the week for both the parkway and the front lawn. The humidity recently spiked and I wanted to head off any fungus while I am still watering 4 times a day

I didn't go with Tenacity at seed down, so I have been hand pulling new germinated weeds and painting the bermuda with Gly as it pop ups. There only has been a couple of weeds and bemuda sprouts. So far so good on the weeds.

Before mow:
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After mow:
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Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2020 2:00 pm
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

Updates on the reno and overseed.

10 DAG for the reno and it is growing fast and getting thicker. Still some bare spots, but I think I need to give it more time before doing any more seeding. I will have plenty of time, in my zone, I don't have much of a cold winter.

The overseed is about 7 days after seeding and maybe 4 days post germination. It is growing in quick, but it is still early. It will be interesting how it turns out as the Kikuyu and the St Augustine doesn't totally go dormant here. If I can get the PRG to be thick enough, I may even kill the Kikuyu and St Augustine with Quinclorac. I know it works, cause I nearly killed off my backyard last spring by mistake.

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Last edited by ShadowGuy on Wed Sep 15, 2021 3:25 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by livt0ride »

Filling in nicely!

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ShadowGuy
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

2nd mow at .75" of the parkway at 12 DAG

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First mow of the front yard at 1.25" with a rotary bagged at 5-7 DAG. Once again, probably on the early side, but I needed to clean up the kikuyu and St Augustine.

I put down of 18-24-6 starter fert at the bag rate. Would like to get it down to .75" to match the parkway, but it is rather soft and bumpy and I didn't want to tear up my new seedlings. When it is further established, maybe I can get the reel on it.

Image
Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
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Location: Huntington Beach, CA
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

Mowed the front yard at 1.25" with the bagger, and went back and reseeded and top dressed the thin spots. Mostly around the edges and corners. I know its is still early at 12 DAG, but hopefull it will continue to thicken up. I need to exercise my patience.

For the parkway at 17 DAG, I reel mowed again at .75" and seeded and top dressed the thin areas again. mostly around the edges.


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Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
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Contact:

Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

Mowed both at .75 on Friday. Still kind of soft, pulled back on the watering and trying to get the soil to firm up.

Color is really starting to pop.


Image
Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
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Location: Huntington Beach, CA
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

Mowed at .75 and put down more fertilizer and fungus prevention.


Image
Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

Image


This really shows the before and after. The parkway grass was all the same across both our yards.

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Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

Couple of setbacks. The kikuyu was coming back quickly on the parkway, so a few days ago I used some Image All in One (quinoclorac & sulfentrazone). Mixed it light, but it still discolored. On the positive side it wiped out the kikuyu, it appears to have burnt the tips of the PRG, and I am hoping it will recover.

I was running my ‘99 McClane and I notice that it is no longer spinning the reel. The chain broke at the coupler. So with half my yard mowed, I brought out my backup, the ‘88 10 blade McLane. No roller on that one, so it’s not striping as well.


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Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

The parkway recovered from the burn, and no sign of weeds at this point. Still have some thin areas that just won't fill in completely.

The front yard is not striping as well as I would have hoped. The St. Augustine and Kikuyu have yet to go dormant, so I think that has something to do with it. Looking at pictures from last year, it may not be until Dec/Jan till they really stop growing, but never really go brown.

Cutting the parkway at 0.5" and the yard at .75".

It amazing how much the ground has moved in the parkway. It was dead flat before I seeded. I think I will be sanding come this spring, to see if I can get it to go lower.

Image
Image
Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

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Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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ShadowGuy
Posts: 203
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Re: ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG

Post by ShadowGuy »

I guess I will call this a mid-season update comparison since the new grass is still only a couple months old. I probably will want to do another comparison in late spring.

Feels like all the work on the reno was worth it. :D

After
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Before
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Embracing the Kikuyu blend in Socal.
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu (Rear yard)
ShadowGuy's Lawn Journal - Kikuyu to PRG (Front Yard)

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