Senior citizens in Carroll County received a special holiday delivery last week. NG Turf‘s employees teamed up with Omni Christian Services to generously donate and serve over 1,400 meals. These meals brightened the holidays and provided a sense of community for many of our isolated elders in Carroll County, Georgia. We are grateful for all the kindness shared to the Meals on Wheels seniors this holiday season.
The state Environmental Protection Division declared a Level 2 drought in 52 counties that limits outdoor watering to two days a week. With little rain and wildfires creeping toward metro Atlanta, the order calls for the strictest water limits since the devastating droughts of the late 2000’s.
Drought Response Level 2 is in effect in these Georgia counties:
Banks, Barrow, Bartow, Butts, Carroll, Catoosa, Chattooga, Cherokee, Athens-Clarke, Clayton, Cobb, Coweta, Dade, Dawson, DeKalb, Douglas, Fannin, Fayette, Floyd, Forsyth, Fulton, Gilmer, Gordon, Gwinnett, Habersham, Hall, Haralson, Harris, Heard, Henry, Jackson, Lamar, Lumpkin, Meriwether, Monroe, Morgan, Murray, Newton, Oconee, Paulding, Pickens, Pike, Polk, Rockdale, Spalding, Troup, Union, Upson, Walker, Walton, White and Whitfield.
Drought Response Level 1 is in effect in these Georgia counties:
Baker, Baldwin, Bibb, Bleckley, Calhoun, Chattahoochee, Clay, Columbia, Crawford, Crisp, Decatur, Dooly, Dougherty, Early, Elbert, Franklin, Glascock, Greene, Hancock, Hart, Houston, Jasper, Jefferson, Jones, Laurens, Lee, Lincoln, Macon, Madison, Marion, McDuffie, Miller, Mitchell, Muscogee, Oglethorpe, Peach, Pulaski, Putnam, Quitman, Rabun, Randolph, Richmond, Schley, Seminole, Stephens, Stewart, Sumter, Talbot, Taliaferro, Taylor, Terrell, Towns, Twiggs, Warren, Washington, Webster, Wilkes and Wilkinson.
Don’t see your county listed? Then you should follow the non-drought schedule for outdoor water, which is the same as Drought Response Level 1.
Things to keep in mind regardless of your declared drought level:
- During installation and for the first 30 days after installation, newly planted/installed lawns and turf, ground cover, flowers, shrubs, trees and other plants can be watered any day, at any time without restriction.
- Daily watering is allowed between 4 pm and 10 am to plant, grow, manage and maintain lawns and turf, ground cover, flowers, shrubs, trees and other plants.
“It was a pleasure to work with Kayla. I am sure that the rest of the staff at NG Turf are great too, but my experience/interactions were limited to Kayla. As promised, the driver arrived early, but he did not push to unload before the installer arrived to direct the placement. Actually, I suggested unloading and placing closer to the install site so that he could try to turn the truck around… My experience with NG Turf was fantastic. Admittedly, my yard may still be somewhat of challenge, due to the shade. However, if the area that I sodded works well, I will definitely be contacting NG Turf again soon for sod to cover the remainder of my yard. Again, I am very pleased with the product and service provided by NG Turf!”
“Huddleston’s Landscaping has used North Georgia Turf products on many occasions. We have installed multiple varieties of Bermuda and Zoysia. North Georgia Turf products “hold up” after we leave the job site. We trust North Georgia Turf sod, and will continue to use their product in the future”.
“Thanks for sod recommendations. Also, fortunate to have gotten rain and some rest from watering since I am still exhausted from spreading 8 tons of topsoil and the two pallets of centipede by myself this weekend. By the way, a good selling point of your sod is that it does come in good shape, in squares and with a good amount of soil as part of it. I’ve bought a few sod pieces here and there from another sod farm that roll up the sod and it is cut with almost no topsoil with it so… the grass doesn’t do as well. I guess they have to cut it with less soil in order to be able to roll it up.”
Thank you all for your kind words and support throughout the years. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours from our family at NG Turf.
As the temperatures continue to drop and as we cruise into the new year, we wanted to pull together our top 3 cool season grass picks. Of course, each grass variety is different, and should be chosen with your landscape and the potential growing conditions in mind.
- TifTuf™ Bermuda — TifTuf™ Bermuda sets the new scientific standard in drought resistance and sustainability – requiring less water and recovering from drought faster than any other bermudagrass on the market. TifTuf™ has a fine texture, bright green color, and boasts superior recovery from traffic and injury. It is the all-around best choice for professionals and homeowners seeking a low-maintenance turf with excellent performance under stress. TifTuf™ is grown year-round at NG Turf and can be installed as dormant sod during the winter months.
- Rebel® Supreme Fescue — Rebel® Supreme Fescue has improved heat and drought tolerance compared to other fescue varieties. It has moderate shade and traffic tolerance. Rebel® Supreme is extremely dense with a medium blade and a dark green color. This is the only turf that is green year round in this climate.
- Marvel II Zoysia — Marvel II is the newest, most affordable Zoysia on the market. Marvel II is very dense and performs well in both sun and shade. It’s slow growth rate and low fertilization requirements are certain to save you time and money with overall maintenance. Marvel II has a bright green color and good drought resistance making it a great choice for any landscape application. Marvel II is grown year round at NG Turf and can be installed during the winter months.
When it comes to fall time, there are a lot of things we look forward to: football, hayrides, campfires and sweater weather — just to name a few. Keeping up with fallen leaves is not something we look forward to, but it is a necessary part of keeping your lawn healthy and disease-free. There are a few options available when it comes to leaf upkeep. Let’s unpack those options:
PROS: Bagging offers a neat and tidy option to leaf management. There are no ugly piles, and leaves don’t blow around onto neighbor’s yard. It gets leaves off the grass, and the fewer the leaves, the better. As mentioned before, leaving them on the lawn can kill your grass (through suffocation) or create diseases.
CONS: Bagging can be a time-consuming, back-breaking task. It is also a waste of good usable mulch and potential no-cost nutrients the leaves could provide.
TIPS: Raking leaves into piles by hand is the old fashioned way, and we always make the most of it by creating heaps as tall as we can to jump into, and burying each other in the piles. Use a leaf scoop that hooks onto your hands and helps you lift large amounts of leaves in a single scoop. (These are often a hit with the kids!)
PROS: Burning can be considered a natural form of disposal. It is an efficient, reasonably easy and fast way to eliminate leaf litter. It eliminates expenses associated with leaf removal.
CONS: It contributes to air pollution by adding chemicals such as hydrocarbons or carbon monoxide into the air. It’s not legal in some cities, so be sure to check your local ordinances before burning.
TIPS: If burning is the option you choose, here are some tips to do it safely:
- Keep your piles small and manageable, adding leaves as the pile burns down.
- Place your burn pile in an open area, free from overhanging trees or brush, and far from anything that flying sparks could ignite. Using a fire pit is a great option.
- Make sure a water source is handy and easily accessible. Consider notifying your fire department of your plans.
- Watch the weather and don’t plan to burn when the wind is blowing. If the weather is expected to change, wind usually accompanies those changes. Avoid gusty days and dry weather as well.
(By burying leaves, we mean incorporating them back into the soil either through composting or directly integrating them in the ground.)
PROS: Leaves can enrich any garden soil after they have decomposed over the winter. You can simply work them back into the dirt of your garden, or create or add them to your compost pile. Rather than purchasing soil amendments, use the leaves instead.
CONS: Whether you work the leaves into the garden directly or go the composting route, this is a labor-intensive option.
TIPS: Shredding or mulching the leaves first makes it easier to mix them into the soil, and makes them decompose faster. It also prevents matting. Make sure the leaves are dry, then spread a 3” layer over your garden area. For best results, work the leaves into the soil with a tiller, spade or garden fork to bury the leaves 6” to 8” deep now in the fall and by spring, the soil will be richer and ready for planting.
If you compost, you’ll need to research the mixture required (50-50 green and brown matter helps speed decomposition), depths and dimensions as well as timing for turning. Be sure not to put house pet waste, meat or fat in the compost.
By far the best option is to shred or mulch the leaves with the mulching blade on your lawn mower and leave them to fertilize the lawn.
PROS: Fall is the best time to fertilize. The decaying matter feeds the beneficial microorganisms that keep soil healthy. If you collect some of the mulched leaves in the mower collection bag, you can also use them as mulch around the garden and landscape because of the many benefits: suppressing weeds, conserving moisture and maintaining soil temperature. Plus, mower mulching is a lot easier than raking!
TIPS: Mow when leaves are not wet, if possible. If you leave the mower bag off, the leaves will fall right back onto the ground with minimal work.
Mulch into 1” bits and mow over them until a half inch of grass peeks out through leaf clippings. The idea is to mow dry leaves at same height as grass mowing, with a sharp blade, and go over it couple times so that no large leaves are remaining to kill grass.
Making the right call is easy with Rebel Supreme Fescue. Rebel Supreme fescue establishes quickly and requires little maintenance. To give your yard durable, vibrant turfgrass, provide proper care for your newly laid sod.
Establishing Fescue Sod
Our temperate Georgia climate makes establishing fall fescue simple. Newly installed turfgrass requires frequent watering, initial fertilization, and limited foot traffic to allow its roots to anchor into the soil. If you prepare your lawn for new fescue sod, your grass will require less upkeep in the early weeks after installation. After installing your turf, water your lawn daily for several weeks. Apply a starter fertilizer, but take care not to over-fertilize. Once your turf is hearty enough to withstand mowing (usually several weeks after installation), you can leave grass clippings on your lawn as a natural fertilizer.
Maintaining Fescue Grass
Fescue grass requires less watering, mowing, and fertilizing than warm-season grasses. Well-maintained fescue will give you a lush, healthy landscape year-round. Fertilize your fescue lawn in the fall and supplement rainfall with good irrigation. Keep your mower blade sharp to prevent tearing of your turfgrass, and set your cutting height to 2-3 inches. Raise the height of the blade during times of drought or extreme temperature change to avoid stressing your grass. Aeration and seeding in the fall prevents thatch buildup in your grass and allows fescue to thrive during its peak growing season.
For premium fescue turfgrass, call NG Turf.
By installing sod to your landscape, it gives instant aesthetic appeal and establishes quickly, allowing you to enjoy sports, holiday parties, and everyday events on a lush carpet of green grass.
NG Turf isn’t your ordinary sod company.
Our grass is cultivated at sod farms located in Whitesburg, Clarkesville, Calhoun, Perry, Middle Georgia, and Heard County. Each variety of grass that we offer is grown under carefully controlled conditions and inspected four times every year by the Georgia Crop Improvement Association (GCIA).
All of the grasses that you will find at NG Turf are “blue tag” certified by the GCIA. This means that when you purchase grass from us, you will receive a healthy, genetically unadulterated product that performs exactly as described. GCIA blue tag certified also means that the sod is grown under carefully monitored conditions and guaranteed to be free of insects, weeds, fungus, and other contaminants.
Sod from NG Turf is perfect fit for homeowners, landscapers and even golf course superintendents. We offer a many different varieties to fit your specific needs:
- Zeon Zoysia – very shade tolerant; bright green in color; low fertilization requirements
- Rebel Supreme Fescue – the only variety of turf that will stay green year-round; an exceptionally heat tolerant fescue
- TifGrand Bermuda – the darkest variety of Bermuda available; grows well in both sun and shade; easy to maintain
- And more!
With 2,000 acres of grass, upwards of 75 employees, six sod farms, and the ability to grow grass 12 months out of the year, NG Turf should be your first choice when considering sod.
To learn more about the grass listed above and the many other types of grass that we offer, contact NG Turf today! Every shipment of sod is guaranteed to be fresh, healthy, and ready to install.
Caryn actually wrote us a poem that we feel should be shared:
Today, me and the leaves drop to our knees
and dream about the lawn we could lay on.
Surrounded by the trees and the soft gentle breeze,
We know that day will be fun.
Bright green grass, a bed full of flowers,
What more could a new home need?
Just NG Turf to choose my poem
And make this not just a dream!
Thank you to all who participated! Stay tuned for more contests and promotions from NG Turf.
Ok, fess up. Just how much do you know about lawn fertilizer? Do you shovel out sod food every spring and quickly move to mowing? Do you choose your turf chow based on ingredients, or based on convenience? In the North Georgia heat, packing your lawn with nutrients is nearly as important as good irrigation and watering. And with any lawn care maintenance, development and nourishment shouldn’t stop when the turf leaves the farm.
When to Fertilize
As you might expect, newly laid sod requires hearty nutrition to grow lush and robust. For a full, durable landscape, fertilize your sod two weeks after installation. For an established lawn, fertilize just after spring greening and just before fall cooling. Proper fertilization encourages root growth more than blade growth, so apply your grass nutrition at the right time and in the recommended quantities. It is better to err on the side of under-fertilization than over-fertilization.
Choosing a Fertilizer
With so many types of fertilizer at your local gardening supply store, choosing your sod fodder based on ingredients alone can be daunting. Nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium are the key macronutrients required to properly fertilize your yard. The three numbers on your bag of fertilizer are ratios of these nutrients. Choosing the wrong fertilizer or using too much of it can encourage weed growth, so make sure you research your grass or ask an expert which fertilizer to buy. Slow-release, organic fertilizers are the safest and healthiest choice for your sod, and can feed your lawn for up to 10 weeks. For easy, organic recycling, leave your grass clippings after you mow: the cut blades release nitrogen into your yard, reducing your need for fertilizer.
For information on laying and maintaining your Atlanta, GA sod, call our turf experts at NG Turf at (770) 832-8608.
Winterizing your irrigation system is a must if you hope to continue to use it next spring! To keep your irrigation system safe when the temperatures dip, do these three things before the first freeze.
Wrap all above ground pipes and valves in foam insulation or cover well with pine straw. These parts are susceptible to freeze damage since they are exposed directly to the air.
If your system is controlled by a digital timer, set it to “rain mode” to deactivate the system. This will save all of your settings for next spring, saving time and aggravation. If your system works with a timer dial, you should unplug it from the power source for maximum energy savings. For either type of system, disconnect the wires that power the pump to prevent damage that can occur if the pump runs when the system is dry.
To prevent cracked pipes, removing the water from your piping system is critical. You can remove enough water by turning off the water supply and running your system through 1 complete cycle. The water in the system will run downhill to the lowest heads and drain out. The remaining water will not be under pressure and is unlikely to cause damage when temperatures dip since the ground isn’t likely to freeze at the depth of your pipes. An irrigation system blow-out is an advanced do-it-yourself project. Mistakes can damage your irrigation system or cause serious injury. It’s better to leave it to the pros.
You may be wondering… “But, what does my lawn need now?”
To help your lawn bed down for winter, you should apply a winterizing fertilizer to give your warm season grass a jumpstart in the spring. Use an 18-15-20 mix in September or early October for potassium supplementation.
Dormant lawns still need water to stay alive. Aim for at least 1 inch of water every 14 – 21 days. If we experience long periods without rain, you may have to water your lawn. Just be sure to water midday when air temperatures are over 40 degrees to prevent ice from forming. Your sprinkler system is on winter hiatus… so, don’t pack the hose away! You may need it sooner than you think.
Need a rain gauge this winter? Call and mention this blog and you will receive one for free! Call NG Turf at 770-832-8608.