Fall Lawn Renovation

Planning on renovating your fescue lawn this fall?

Start preparing in August!

Test Your Soil

  • Pick up a quick pH test kit here for basic pH information. Apply Mag-I-Cal, a calcium-based conditioner, to raise pH in acidic soils if needed.
  • The ideal pH for lawns is 6.2 to 7.0. If the soil pH is too low (acidic), grass seed will have difficulty germinating and 20% to 70% of your weed controls and lawn fertilizers will be wasted.

Kill Weeds

  • If renovating (starting a new lawn), spray Bonide KleenUp Weed & Grass Killer to kill all existing grass and weeds. Do not reseed for 7 to 10 days after applying Bonide KleenUp Weed & Grass Killer.
  • If overseeding (seeding an existing lawn), spray Bonide WeedBeater Ultra to kill 200+ listed broadleaf weeds. Do not reseed for 2.5 weeks after applying Bonide WeedBeater Ultra.
  • Rake dead grass and weeds down to the dirt and remove once everything has died.


  • Mark irrigation heads and valve boxes with flags if applicable.
  • Water lawn heavily a day or two before aerating.
  • When aerating, make two passes with the second pass being perpendicular to the first.


  • Wait until temperatures are 85° or lower to seed.
  • Renovated Lawn – Estimate 8-10 pounds per 1000 square feet.
  • Over Seeding – Estimate 4-6 pounds per 1000 square feet.


  • Renovated and Overseeded Lawns – Use Jonathan Green New Seeding and Sodding Fertilizer. Can be done the same day as seeding.
    • If you are not seeding this year, apply Jonathan Green Veri-Green as your first application of fall fertilizer. Can also be used on Overseeded lawns.
  • Schedule your second fertilizing 30-40 days after seeding and use Jonathan Green Veri-Green.
  • Use Jonathan Green Winter Survival as your third fertilizer application, 30-40 days after your second application.

Future Weed Control

  • Weed controls and weed preventers can not be used on newly seeded or overseeded lawns until they are established. Wait until you have mowed your lawn 3-4 times before applying weed controls and weed preventers.

Did You Know?

We have our own custom tall turf grass seed blend that is custom blended for the Peninsula area? Ken Matthews Tall Turf Blend is a combination of four tall turf fescue grass seeds that are listed as Category 1 seeds in the VA Tech Virginia Turfgrass Variety Recommendations publication. Our grass seed blend always has a current test date, ensuring maximum seed germination.

Why use a blend of fescue grass seed rather than a single variety of fescue grass seed? Blended grasses offer better disease resistance and a more uniform lawn-regardless of growing conditions. Single grass seeds are more prone to complete die-off from pests, disease and unfavorable growing conditions. Think of a grass seed blend as a variety of different seeds which can handle a variety of growing conditions whereas a single seed has a specific growing condition which can more easily be killed by pests or diseases that target that specific seed variety.