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About                 
 
Bluegrass 'Thermal Blue'    
    Description

 

 

 

 

 

Typically, bluegrasses have been grown only in the northern region of the United States. They simply could not take the heat down south. But, 'Thermal Blue' is new bluegrass variety that thrives even south of the transition zone.

Thermal Blue combines the heat tolerance of turf-type tall fescue with the exceptional turf qualities of Kentucky Bluegrass. Not only does Thermal Blue stand up to heat extremely well, it shows outstanding shade hardiness, particularly in the South.

Thermal Blue is resistant to brown patch and other diseases, and its aggressive rhizome development gives it remarkable wear tolerance. With a fine leaf texture the grass produces a beautiful appearance as good or better than any other warm-season variety.

Like fescue, Bluegrass will remain green throughout the year, even during the winter months.

 

Culture and Planting

Spring and Fall are the best times to plant Bluegrass seed because the seed germinates when temperatures are between 60°F - 80°F.

Though Thermal Blue has shown excellent sun tolerance, here in Zone 8, we usually plant it in locations that will receive afternoon shade or mostly shade. For best performance it requires all day filtered light or 4-5 hours of direct sunlight per day.

A well prepared seedbed is essential for establishing the turf. The site must be well-drained so attention should be given to final grading of the site.

Bermudagrass and some annual grasses are particularly troublesome in Bluegrass turf. Steps should be taken prior to planting to eliminate these undesirable grasses. Herbicides containing glyphosphate, such as Roundup or Killzall, can be used to eliminate bermudagrass prior to planting tall fescue.

 

Independent Testing

Independent testing during the summer at Auburn University showed that Thermal Blue excelled at locations where bluegrasses traditionally don't perform well - under any circumstance. The research demonstrated that Scotts new Heat-Tolerant Blue Grass Seed produces the best density and turf quality of all the cool season grasses tested, even tall fescue. Thermal Blue, featured in New Heat-Tolerant Blue also outperformed tall fescue when exposed to other summer challenges, including growing well in the shade and a higher resistance to brown patch. Other university studies, from Ohio State University to Kansas State University, had similar results in tests showing Thermal Blue’s ability to germinate, withstand heat and disease and establish a thick root system.

 

Mowing

Bluegrass should be mowed at a height no less than 2 1/2 inches during the warm season for best performance and drought tolerance. Keep your mower blades sharp for neat appearance of turf. Mow as needed.

 

Fertilization

Although Bluegrass tolerates low fertility, it responds to fertilization, particularly nitrogen. Fertilize in early spring with a slow-release, high nitrogen fertilizer such as 27-4-6. Fertilize again in mid-spring with 16-4-8 or a lawn fertilizer with similar numbers. Apply 27-4-6 again in fall. You may substitute these commercial grade fertilizers with Milorganite all natural fertilizer.

 

Watering

Thermal Blue Bluegrass has shown itself to be quite tolerant to drought in our own yards. So, do not apply supplemental irrigation until the grass shows signs of needing water (wilting or rolling leaves). Then, apply enough water to wet the soil to a depth of 3 to 4 inches. If runoff occurs before the soil is moistened to a sufficient depth, turn the sprinkler off and allow the water to percolate into the soil. Then turn the sprinkler back on at a later time. Repeat this cycle until the soil is sufficiently moistened.

 

Pests

We've had no problems with pests or diseases. If we do, we'll be sure to update here.

 

Overseeding

Overseeding should not be required as Thermal Blue Bluegrass self-repairs from spreading underground rhizomes.

However, if there is a need to reseed, start by mowing the lawn to a height of 2 inches before broadcasting seed. Rake the lawn to remove grass clippings and other debris. Aerate with a core aerator making two to three passes over the area to be reseeded. Apply seed at 1 pound per 500 to 1,000 sq. ft, and then broadcast a starter fertilizer. These steps are usually adequate to rejuvenate the lawn. After seeding, keep the soil moist for 2 to 3 weeks.

Other Lawn Grasses for the South:
 

 

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