Recent weather fluctuations have led to some unexpected occurrences of seed heads in many lawns. In this guide, we’ll explore why this phenomenon might be happening on your lawn and what steps you can take to address it effectively.
Demystifying Seed Heads:
Most common lawn types in Australia develop sterile seed heads, which means they can’t spread through seeds, only via sprigs or runners. While seed heads are a natural part of the seasonal cycle, they may not contribute to the ideal appearance or feel underfoot that you desire. Typically, this cycle lasts between 4 to 6 weeks.
Factors Behind Seed Head Growth:
- Stress-induced Growth:
- Lack of water, nutrients, or sudden weather changes can stress your turf, leading it to produce seed heads. To address this, aerate, fertilise, and water your lawn deeply if it hasn’t received such care in the past 6-8 weeks.
- Natural Seasonal Cycle:
- Seed head growth often coincides with specific times of the year and is considered a natural occurrence, happening once or twice annually.
Handling Inconsistent Weather Conditions:
In recent times, inconsistent temperatures and weather conditions have been causing concern. These abrupt changes in weather, from warm to cold, or sudden rain, can lead to stress in your grass. This stress is reflected in increased seed head production.
- Regular Mowing:
- Consistent mowing helps divert the plant’s energy away from seed head production and towards healthy leaf growth.
- Plant Growth Regulator (PGR) Application:
- PGRs like Primo Maxx are valuable tools for limiting vertical growth and reducing seed head production. Combining regular mowing with full-rate PGR application is an effective strategy.
- Soil Salinity Check:
- High salinity levels can stress your grass and lead to seed head growth. Applying gypsum or calcium may be necessary to alleviate turf stress and curb seed head production.
- Maintain Perspective:
- If you’ve tried the recommended methods and seed heads persist, it’s important to remember that you’ve taken the necessary steps to ensure your grass’s health. Sometimes, environmental factors are beyond our control, and allowing nature to take its course is the best course of action.
Navigating seed head growth in your lawn involves a combination of proactive measures and a dose of patience. By understanding the underlying causes and implementing the right strategies, you can support your grass through these challenging periods. Rest assured, with time, your lawn will return to its lush, vibrant state.