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Blue Grass: Great Music, and Even Better Turf Material

by Kelly Richardson, All About Lawns Columnist

Did you know? Blue grass is not named for the color of its leaves, but rather for the seed head color, which appears during the spring and summer when allowed to grow to a natural height of two to three feet. Here's more on this popular turf material -- how to grow it and care for it to optimize its aesthetic potential.

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The Skinny on Blue Grass

Smooth Meadow-grass, or Kentucky blue grass, can be found Europe, Asia, northern Africa and North America. Known in agricultural circles as Poa Pratensus, blue grass features a dark green color, medium-fine leaf texture, and is adapted to well-drained soils with a pH of between 5.5 and 7.5.

For maximum results, spread blue grass seed at 2 to 3 pounds per 1,000 square feet during early fall or spring. Keep the seedbed moist during the germination and establishment phases to allow for a strong root system to develop. You can expect germination in 14 to 21 days at a minimum soil temperature of 55º. Full coverage can be expected in about 8 to 10 weeks. You can begin mowing when the turf reaches 2 inches in height.

Keeping Blue Grass Green

Best practices in blue grass management call for fertilization at 3 to 4 pounds of nitrogen at 1000 square feet per year. Irrigate deeply in its initial stages and infrequently in absence of rainfall. Mowing recommendations suggest cutting at 1.5 to 2.5 inches to avoid scorched roots during imposing summers.

Blue grass not only looks great, but its durable character withstands heavy traffic areas. It's a fine choice for homeowners with children and pets.

About the Author
Kelly Richardson has obsessive compulsive lawn disorder and is afflicted with the need to share his knowledge with the world. Kelly writes lawn columns for a variety of home and garden magazines and e-zines.

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