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Kentucky Bluegrass

Description

Kentucky bluegrass is the second most widely grown cool-season species in North Carolina because it has a dark green color, a medium to fine texture, and, due to its aggressive rhizome system, can recover from stresses. It prefers fertile, well-limed soils and full sun to moderate shade. Kentucky bluegrass is often mixed with other cool-season grasses like tall fescue to enhance the ability of the turfgrass stand to recover from stresses. Kentucky bluegrass is often confused with tall fescue and/or perennial ryegrass. However, Kentucky bluegrass has a boat-shaped leaf tip and distinctive light-colored lines on both sides of the midrib.

lawn Maintenance for December - February

Aeration

Delay coring until fall.

Fertilization

Fertilize with 1 pound of actual nitrogen per thousand square feet in February. In absence of soil test results, use a complete (N-P-K) turf-grade fertilizer with a 3-1-2 or 4-1-2 ratio.

Irrigation

Water, if needed, to prevent excessive drying. About 1 inch of water per application each week is adequate.

Mowing

Remove lawn debris (rocks, sticks, and leaves). Mow lawn at 3 inches and remove clipping debris at spring greenup. Mow before grass gets taller than 5 inches. Remember grasscycling and leave clippings on the lawn.

Thatch Removal

It is not necessary to remove thatch.

Weed Control

Apply broadleaf herbicides as necessary for control of chickweed, henbit, or other weeds.

athletic Maintenance for December - February

Fertilization

Follow September-November fertilization guidelines. Fertilize between February 15 and March 15 at the rate of 1 pound of nitrogen per 1,000 square feet. Quick-release sources of nitrogen, such as urea (46-0-0) and ammonium nitrate (34-0-0), should be watered in immediately to prevent foliar burn.

Irrigation

Follow September-November guidelines. Irrigate dormant turf in warm, windy weather to prevent desiccation. Probe the soil to determine dryness.

Mowing

Follow September-November guidelines.

Renovation

If worn or thin areas are heavily used in the fall, overseed with a suitable seed mixture.

Soil Cultivation

Do not cultivate at this time.

Weed Control

Follow September-November guidelines.

Presentations

Publications

Species Data

Seedhead/Flower

seedhead is an open panicle.  spikelets are flattened, with 3-5 seeds each.

Vernation type

leaves folded in the bud

Ligule Type

membranous; very short, collar-like, 0.008 - 0.04 inches (0.2 - 1 mm) long

ligule
ligule
ligule
Growth Season/Life Cycle

cool season turf

Auricle type

absent

sheathmargin2
sheathmargin2
sheathmargin2
Leaf blade tip shape

boat shaped; usually V-shaped, sharply creased below; two distinct, clear lines, one on each side of the midrib

april 8
april 8
april 8
leaftip
leaftip
leaftip
Leaf blade width

0.08 - 0.16 inches (2 - 4 mm) wide

Stolon Presence

absent

Rhizome Presence

present

Collar Type

slightly divided by midrib, may have fine hair on edge

collar
collar
collar
Sheath Margin

closed, but splits with maturity

sheathmargin2
sheathmargin2
sheathmargin2