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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Please forgive us, but Mr. Smarty Plants has been overwhelmed by a flood of mail and must take a break for awhile to catch up. We hope to be accepting new questions again soon. Thank you!

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Friday - January 14, 2011

From: San Antonio, TX
Region: Southwest
Topic: Grasses or Grass-like
Title: Reseed Buffalograss in Early Spring in San Antonio
Answered by: Stephen Scace

QUESTION:

When is best time to put down Buffalo grass seed in 78260 area. How much dirt should I put over existing sodded buffalo grass, which is now sparse?

ANSWER:

The best time to sow Bouteloua dactyloides (Buffalograss) seed in Central Texas is early spring. Reseeding over existing turf is a lot like planting a new lawn from seed, without the deep preparation of the soil that would disturb the existing sod. Our How-To Article, "Native Lawns: Multi-Species", might be helpful.

Briefly, you'll want to add enough soil–remember that Buffalograss doesn't like sand–to cover the seeds and hold some moisture. Be sure to keep the soil moist for the first ten days, watering every day if necessary, then water twice a week for a month and once a week for another two months during the growing season.

Before you proceed with this project, it might be worthwhile to figure out why your existing sod has become sparse. If the conditions that caused thinning of your turf continue, your newly seeded plants won't thrive, either. Was the soil prepared adequately before the sod was laid? Is the soil too sandy for Buffalograss? Does it get at least six hours of sun daily from March through November?

 

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