Round Up. Is it safe?

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Below you will find the statement released regarding Roundup. Brummel Lawn does use it in landscape beds and hard surface sprays. All of our applicators follow label rate and label requirement to ensure we are using the product safely. With us being part of the NALP (Nation Association of Landscape Professionals) we continue to educate ourselves and our customers on issues and concerns in our field!  Here is some more information on it, that should help with any concerns.

–   Nick Brummel

NALP Member Bulletin: Statement Regarding Monsanto Roundup Court Case

On Friday, August 10, 2018, a San Francisco jury ruled that Roundup® weed killer, consisting of the active ingredient glyphosate, caused terminal non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma in a former school groundskeeper. The jury awarded the plaintiff $289 million in damages. Defendant, Bayer unit Monsanto, has signaled that they plan to appeal the decision and defend their product through the California state court appeals process.

NALP is committed to educating the landscape workforce, customers and the general public about the safe use of lawn and landscape products. It is possible that you may have questions or will receive questions from your employees, customers, the general public or the media regarding this recent jury decision and the safety of Roundup® or glyphosate. Please use the following facts as a reference and information to provide to your employees and customers as we continue to closely monitor the ongoing litigation.

Here are some facts about glyphosate:
• Glyphosate is the most commonly used herbicide in the world and has been used safely for more than 40 years by agricultural and landscape professionals to control broadleaf weeds and grasses. It is used in products such as Roundup®.
• Glyphosate is one of the most widely used and effective tool the landscape industry uses to protect green spaces and to control weeds and other invasive species that can exacerbate allergies, spread diseases and cripple landscapes.
• Researchers have conducted more than 800 scientific studies and reviews validating glyphosate’s safety since it was introduced in the 1970s.
• In May 2018, a study published by the U.S. National Institutes of Health reaffirmed there is not a statistically significant association between glyphosate use and cancer.
• The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is statutorily mandated under the Federal Insecticide and Fungicide Act (FIFRA) to conduct reviews of all approved pesticide and herbicide products. FIFRA provides federal regulation of pesticide distribution, sale and use. Any pesticide registered under FIFRA, including glyphosate, must show that using the product according to specifications will not cause unreasonable adverse effects on the environment or to human health.
• In December 2017, after conducting an extensive registration review of glyphosate the EPA released a draft risk assessment, which concluded that glyphosate is not likely to be carcinogenic to humans, and found no other meaningful risks to human health when the product is used safely and properly, according to label instructions.
• The EPA’s recent reevaluation of glyphosate was presented to the FIFRA Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP). The SAP provides independent scientific advice to the EPA on health and safety issues related to pesticides. The FIFRA SAP is comprised of biologists, statisticians, toxicologists and other experts. The independent SAP agreed with EPA’s risk assessments and conclusions that glyphosate is not likely carcinogenic.
• Roundup® and many other products containing glyphosate are currently registered and approved by the EPA and all 50 states lead pesticide regulatory agencies and remain legal to use when used in a manner consistent with label instructions.
• During the evaluation of glyphosate EPA worked closely with their Canadian counterpart Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) in concluding that glyphosate is unlikely to be carcinogenic or cause unreasonable risks to humans when used in according to label instructions. Other regulatory authorities around the globe in Europe, Japan, Korea and Australia, have also consistently reaffirmed that glyphosate is not carcinogenic.
• In 2015, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classified glyphosate as a probable carcinogen. However, the IARC is not a regulatory agency and did not conduct independent studies before making this designation. Follow-up investigative reports of this designation found that IARC concealed important scientific data and edited conclusions from key studies of glyphosate.

Ensuring the safety, health and well-being of our members, their employees, the general public and the environment is the top priority of NALP. Our association fully supports documented research conducted by regulatory bodies and the established framework for the regulation of pesticides in the United States through FIFRA, and we continually and closely monitor for regulatory and research developments. The EPA and the 50 state pesticide lead regulatory agencies are our pesticide regulators and the landscape industry will continue to comply with all federal and state law that is supported by their review process, science, evaluation, decision and enforcement pursuant to FIFRA.

NALP understands the important role glyphosate plays in managing landscapes and delivering crops, and we are committed to promoting and ensuring its safe and effective use. NALP members are licensed and certified pesticide applicators that use glyphosate and other products in a safe and environmentally responsible manner.



I have dead (tan) grass, but I have been watering. Is it grubs?

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More than likely its fungus….

In the transition zone from warm season turf and cool season turf we have a difficult time getting anything to stay looking great! In the Spring, your cool season grasses (Bluegrass and Fescue) look great while your warm season looks dead and just the opposite in the middle of the summer unless… You water! Even with watering, cool season grasses can have problems. With the temperatures being higher we tend to water more. With watering more, we keep the grass blades wet longer, which can cause issues as well. The major issue is Fungus!

What is Fungus and what causes it?

Fungus is a disease that attacks the plant’s leaves in a few different ways. Some will start at the tip, some in the middle of the leaf and others will start at the crown of the plant. With little air movement and water, the plant (grass) doesn’t dry out. This will cause the grass to start to brown, without looking at the blades of grass most people tend to add more water. This is just like adding fuel to a fire!
Other causes are heavy rains in the morning and water standing or ponding for a while. When temperatures go up during the day causing humidity, the grass is unable to dry.
Not mowing at the right height or allowing the grass to get too long can cause this as well. Brummel Lawn keeps all turf at 3.5” during the summer months, leaving it long enough to keep the grass green and short enough to help air move.

If I have it what do I do?

Call Brummel Lawn! We will come take a look to verify that it is in fact fungus. Unfortunately, the necessary treatments can get costly, as the chemicals are not cheap.

  1. Chemically treat it. This must be sprayed twice within 21 days to ensure its knocked out.
  2. Cut back on the water to help the grass dry out between the watering cycles.
  3. Wait until the temperature is lower and humidity decipates. Once the night lows drop below 65, the likelihood of the fungus to continue growing is low much lower.
  4. Leave it be until fall and call Brummel Lawn to reseed the lawn.

What can I do to prevent it?

  1. Manage how often you water and the time of day
    • Don’t: Water at night
    • Do: Water early mornings
    • Try not to water every day.  Longer and deeper is better!
  2. Brummel Lawn offers a preventive, once a month application May-July or August, to control most fungus.
  3. Aeration and verti-cutting in the fall and/or spring will help the air and water move through the leaf blades.
  4. Apply proper amounts of fertilizer At Brummel Lawn, we adjust our fertilizer program year to year to keep lawns green and healthy. Nitrogen can be great to give you a green lawn quickly, but can also cause fungus to expand. There is more to it then just buying a bag of fertilizer! Timing is everything!

Please call your Brummel Lawn specialist with any questions, as we would love to help you have a great looking lawn like the Kansas City T-Bones!


2015 Fall Seeding Issues

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As the fall seeding season is coming to an end, it has been one of challenges.  After speaking with some sod farms, that will plant the seed in middle of August, they have faced major issues as well and some are saying it’s been the worst in 15 years!  A positive that we had going for us is the warm temperatures.  It kept the soil temperatures up.  With the soil temperatures up grass seed was coming up in 4-8 days!  Now that we are into October and the soil temperatures are down that same seed could take 14-21 days to come up!!!

Now on to the issues of the fall.  The first major issue is that we have not had the rain that we have seen all season long!  Some places in the Kansas City Metro have had less than 1 inch this fall.  When we have had rain, it hasn’t been a soaking rain.  It has been a quick hitting rain and then moves on.

The second issue is the warm days.  Although it does help the seed come up quicker; at the same time it dries out the soil quicker.  As we talk about all the time with seeding you must keep it moist to soften up the shell of the seed and allows the seed to germinate.

The third issue is the windy days we have had.  With the windy days it also dried out the soil, so it has been a challenge to keep the soil moist.  Even with irrigation systems we have seen areas that just won’t stay moist.  If you were seeding areas without irrigation, it has almost been a full time job.

We still have some time for things to change and the seed is still there and will come up when conditions are right and gets what it needs.  Stay the course is the direction we are giving, keep watering!

Remember if you have seeded weeds can’t be sprayed until the new grass is mowed two times.  This is an issues as most don’t want weeds in their yards but they want to seed.  If you seed early in the fall, you still have time to get those weeds sprayed out in late fall before the end of the season.

Brummel Lawn is completing round 4 of their Standard Turf Fertilizer Program in the next few weeks and will be getting ready for the final round.  The final round will get the turf ready to make it through the winter and come out in the spring with a bang!

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Fall Fertilizer

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Its Fall should I fertilize?

Yes! The Fall is the best time to feed your plants! That includes your turf as well as the plants in your landscapes.  This article will review both landscaping and turf.

Landscape Plants and Trees

Fall fertilizer in the landscape beds will help the plants come out of the winter quicker and be less stressed.

  1. The first way to get the fertilizer to the plant the quickest is early Fall with leaves still on the plant, to spray a foliar application. Miracle-Gro is an example of a foliar application, but we would recommend a stronger application. The current application that we have been using on our newly planted plants and seasonal color is Macron and its 16-32-16. This is a well balanced fertilizer with Nitrogen (16%), Phosphorus (32%) which in most cases is lacking in the soil and will help build stronger roots, and Potassium (16%) will help with chlorophyll in the leaves.
  2. The second way to get fertilizer to the plants is a granular application that the roots will uptake. We normally will do this the first part of November, so that some will be in the soil in the Spring for the plant to grab and the rest will be taken up by the plant in the Fall and will store it and use it though the winter. This as well will help the plant spring into Spring! The product that we are looking at using in the landscape beds this fall is very similar to the product that we are applying to the lawns right now!

Again going with the theme of the season, with the wet weather and the soil getting leached out with all the rain, now is the time to put some nutrients back in the ground!


For turf 75% of the Nitrogen should be put down in the Fall.  Again with all the rain you might have noticed that green isn’t as dark green as normal.  Normally, we apply about 25% of your yearly Nitrogen (N) to the yard in the Spring, as we normally have surplus in the ground from the previous Fall.  This year our surplus got used up, so this Fall we are going strong.  Our early Fall application is going to put about 1 pound of N back into the soil/turf! That is about ¼ of a pound more than normal.  But with this application it will be 50% slow release so that grass doesn’t just spring out of the ground,  and will keep feeding, until we do the late Fall which is all mineral and will put 1.25 pounds of N back in, for the quicker green up in the Spring, and a thicker healthier turf. On an average year, cool season turf (Blue Grass and Fescue) should receive 2-2.5 lbs of N per year.  Studies have shown that once you get over 3 lbs. per year you are increasing your chance of fungus!



My Grass is green why should I do anything?

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My Grass is green why should I do anything?


This year grass has really done well, except for some fungus out there. But even with green grass that might look like its healthy, you might start to see issues next spring…. With the wet spring, summer and looking like fall, the pores in the soil are closed up, not allowing the roots to get the air they need.  This is very true with clay soils and even sandy loamy soils.  The best way to solve this problem is by aeration, either single pass or double.

Aeration will help in many ways.

  1. Allow more oxygen to get to the roots, which will help with root development
  2. Even Core Aeration will break up the thatch level and increase the microbial activity in the soil to help with the decomposing organic matter (grass clippings) which is basically Free Fertilizer!!!
  3. Help with fungus issues
  4. Loosens compaction for better water absorption and nutrients

These are the major ones but there are many more.  In most cases it will also help the lawn be more drought tolerant the next season.  Brummel Lawn starts its fall aeration the last week of August and will aerate until Thanksgiving.

Do I have to do it every year? No you don’t have to do it every year, but every other or even every third year will make a big difference, on wet years it is good to get it opened back up!

How deep do the plugs go? Normally we try to get the core to come out about 3”.  If the lawn is wet we will be able to get it a little deeper and if its dry maybe only 2”, so if you have an underground dog fence you may want to have it marked or let the technician know.  Also if you have an irrigation system, you can mark the heads, in most cases the technicians are able to see where heads and boxes are and are able to avoid those items.

With aeration an over seed can be done? Yes with the plugs and the holes you do get soil to seed contact.  But, if you have a lot of bare areas it would be best to drill-seed or verti-cut and seed.

So if you have a thick lawn, or haven’t aerated in the last couple of years, or have paths where people/dogs or even vehicles might have ran over,  you might want to think about aeration this fall.  It could save you money in the long run and you could just aerate and not seed!  A great fall fertilizer and aeration will take a good yard and make it great!

Remember you can always call our office and have one of horticulturist come out and make a recommendation on aeration, fertilizer, verti-cut, drill seed or recommend nothing!


Why did you mow….

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Why did you mow… I now have ruts!


This season has been one of the most challenging seasons we have seen.  During May we only saw 5 days without rain!  It was the 6th wettest May on record!!! With the rain there has not been a perfect day to mow or a way to make everyone happy.

On a normal week Brummel Lawn will run 5 mowing crews with most crews having 3 per crew, and some days 4 per crew.  The crews routes are set up to run Monday though Friday.  The beginning of the week is loaded with more commercial properties and residential properties are generally scheduled later in the week if its possible. In the Spring with having to double cut and sometimes triple cut, these crews are working hard to be able to keep up and stay current without Mother Nature throwing them a curve ball like this season.


In most cases we try not to mow while it is raining or if we get over a 1/2″ of rain.  Also in most cases a 1/2″ of rain should drain and can still be mowed.  However it will still be wet. Anything over that we call it a day, pull off the yard, or do a delayed start.


The following day we pick up where we left off and try to play catch up.

This season we have had to go down different avenues to ensure that your lawns were mowed each week.  For instance, we had to add an additional 3 crews for a couple of weeks to try and keep up or even complete the weeks mowing before we moved on to the next week.  This season, for the first time, we have also had to have all mowing crews work entire weekends to stay caught up. So, unfortunately we have had to mow grass that was still a little bit wet.


The crews were instructed to be as careful as they could and skip any areas that were really wet and we would cut them the following week,.  Unfortunately there were times when the following week came and we had to skip those areas again due to more rain.


In a couple areas there were some mud tracking.  Mud tracking is when the tires lift the muddy water to the surface and it attaches to the blades of grass.  Therefore it gives the appearance of a painted muddy line. Yes it looks awful BUT there is good news, in most cases, yes I said most cases it didn’t rut or harm the grass, it just looks bad

The tires we use are wide to help with compaction and rutting.  Did you know that our big mowers put less pressure per square inch than the wheels on a standard 21″ push mower! Another fun fact that a golf course would rather an elephant walk across a golf green than a lady in high heels, as the same applies that the elephants step is softer on the grass then the lady’s heel!

Ok now that we have armed you with some knowledge on how we operate and why we do what we do, hopefully you will continue to be understanding as we fight the battle with Mother Nature, and do the best we can to keep your turf looking better than the rest!



What Height Should My Grass be cut at? What height does Brummel Lawn cut at?

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This is the million dollar question.  Brummel Lawn does our spring cut (first cut of the year) at 3” and rest of the season we mow at 3.5”.  We don’t change up our heights very often due to the fact that it is very difficult to change on the large commercial mowers.  We run mowers that have fixed decks vs the floating decks.  With the fixed deck it takes the variables out of setting the mowing height by having to adjust anything onsite.  The front wheels are set and we just have to put 2 spacers on each blade.  Our current mowers run with three 18” blades but only cut a 52” path. During seeding season, early fall we will drop the height down to 3”.


On freshly seeded lawns (complete renovations) the first mow should be done at 2.5” and will help simulate the grass to grow.  This is only if it is a complete lawn, if it’s just an over seeding the normal mowing level will be fine.



On newly sodded yards we recommend waiting as long as possible, the longer the grass is on the top normally the longer the roots are in the soil.  If it has gotten too long bagging might need to be done.


Brummel Lawn doesn’t recommend bagging as the cuttings offer free nitrogen to the turf.  Without bagging your lawn, your lawn can get up to 1 additional pound of nitrogen.  The general rule of thumb is not to cut more that 1/3 of the grass off, but with the springs and only cutting one time per week this doesn’t always happen.  Double cutting helps prevent cuttings from sitting on the top of the lawn is done. Besides the additional nitrogen you receive by leaving the cuttings you also will get a thicker lawn, by getting some thatch.  I know in the fall everyone talks about de-thatching, and so on, but some thatch is good to ensure a healthy lawn. As long as you don’t have more than ¼” of thatch you are in great shape!




In early spring leaf cleanup we lower our deck to 2-2.5” to help get the ground up leaves up and also to cut the tops of the grass off to speed up greening up the lawn.

So to recap the right height at the right time:

Early Spring (even as early as Feb)                2-2.5”

Spring (April)                                                    3”

Late Spring and Summer                                 3.5”       (if it gets really dry every other week)

Early Fall (During Seeding Season)                3”

Fall                                                                    3.5”



What Does My Pre-emergent Do?

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The number one complaint we receive in the spring is that the pre-emergent didn’t work and they have dandelions in bloom or they have seen a few weeds in the yard.  Well the good news is that the pre-emergent didn’t fail as it only prevents crabgrass and goose grass and other “grassy weeds”.   Brummel Lawn applies your pre-emergent in two applications or at a spilt rate.  We have found that by putting down the pre-emergent at a spilt rate you get better results and the pre-emergent last all summer long, until seeding season.  Each round of pre-emergent, we apply the correct rate of fertilizer.  In the early spring apply enough to wake the grass up and the 2nd application to keep the grass going all summer long.

As far as dandelions and other weeds, we have exciting news!  Normally we have to wait for the soil temperatures to come up before we can spray to kill weeds when they are actively growing.  After extensive research by a Turf Horticulturist, this year we are trying a new product that we are able to spray starting the first time we come to your home.  Along with that product we are doing a liquid pre-emergent and fertilizer.  Once the weeds start to actively grow we will also add our normal weed killer to the mix.  So don’t worry on this first round if you don’t see the fertilizer beads like normal! 

Another question or concern is that “I wanted to seed some areas but you put down my pre-emergent!” Don’t worry if you are going to seed areas or have us seed them, we or you are able to apply fescue seed with the pre-emergent that we apply. The key is that you must rake or drill seed to ensure that you have great soil to seed contact.  You won’t have to worry about crabgrass as well, because with the spilt application we will be putting it down again to cover those areas that have been seeded.

With us applying the first round before irrigation systems are on, don’t worry about it getting watered in.  With the spring rains or even the snow it will work the pre-emergent into the ground, now that we are doing a liquid fertilizer the grass will take it up right away though the blades of the grass vs needing the water to take it up though the roots.    


Plant Care Instructions

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We have prepared the following information to enable you to get the most enjoyment from your new landscaping and lawn. The Initial installation will be enhanced over time by proper care and maintenance, adding to the overall value of you home.

The following are simple maintenance guidelines for you to use:

Plant Material:

Watering is the primary concern for newly installed plant material. The amount of water is critical. It is possible to over water plants and in fact can be detrimental to their condition. The Key to watering trees and shrubs is to keep the root ball and surrounding soil moist but not soggy or saturated. The way to accomplish this is to apply water slowly so the moisture soaks in rather than running off the surface.

The following is a guide for the first six to eight (6-8) weeks after installation:

Trees – 1 or 2 times weekly
Shrubs-2 or 3 times weekly

SUMMER (June-September)
Trees- Once every 2 or 3 days
Shrubs-Every other day (daily in very hot and/or dry conditions)

If watering is being accomplished by use of an automatic irrigation system, be extremely careful not to over water. Run times on the shrub zones should be 5-10 minutes per occurrence for spray heads or 30-49 minutes for drip systems. Frequency should be approximately the same as hand watering.

Each natural rainfall will replace at least one occurrence of watering sometimes more depending upon the length and volume of the rainstorm. Keep in mind the only sure way to know when and how much water to apply is to regularly check the soil around the plant material.

Once the material has become established for a few months, the frequency of watering can be gradually reduced until it is only necessary during very hot and/or dry conditions. This is typically the case during the second year after installation.

Weeding of the bed areas is important not only from an aesthetic standpoint but also to avoid inundation and damage to the plant material. Weeds take valuable nutrients and moisture from the soil, which is needed by the shrubs. Weeds and grass in mulched areas can be controlled by hand pulling or by careful use of a “weed killer” type of chemical spray such as Round-up. This must be done per the manufacturer’s label directions.

Pruning During the first year after installation most plant material will only need to be pruned as necessary to remove damaged limbs or dead wood. Pruning for the purpose of shaping and size control normally starts during the second year of growth.

Fertilization New plant material is fertilized at the time of installation. Fertilizer should be applied again approximately three (3) months later or the next spring as the case may be. Thereafter, plant material should be fed once or twice annually depending on the type of fertilizer used. Follow all manufacturers’ recommendations.

Insect and Disease Control this is an important and often overlooked aspect of plant maintenance. In most cases the Homeowner should refer the diagnosis and treatment of these problems to a licensed professional.

Perennial flowers late in the fall the dead foliage of the perennials should be cut off just above ground level in order to promote new growth in the spring. This is the natural cycle of these plants. It does not mean that they have died. A general rule to follow is whatever dies back- cut back. And whatever stays green leave.


WATER! WATER! WATER! In warm or dry weather conditions sod must be soaked daily for at least the first two (2) weeks after installation. It is difficult to over water sod initially, although excessive moisture can cause problems with other plant material if it is allowed to persist. If you see water from the lawn running down your driveway or the street, it normally means it is time to move your sprinkler.

As a general rule: One Hour of Watering Twice a Day (Total of 2 hours) for Each Sprinkler Location is a good target. It is best not to water during the heat of the day, but often this is unavoidable with new sod. The key is to keep sod damp at all times. Signs indicating trouble are a “blue haze” color to the grass or dry “crunchy” footprints that do not spring back up after the sod has been stepped on.



816-695-6803 or 816-525-8333



The Goal Of Watering New Grass Seed

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All seeds require moisture and a certain temperature range before they begin to germinate. Once the germination process has begun, if conditions change, the seed or new sprout is vulnerable and can die.

If the seed or sprout dries out, it dies out. Your mission then, is to provide adequate moisture at all times. The pre-sprout phase is most critical. Your commitment to watering new grass seed must stay strong. The germination time for grass seed ranges from 5 to 30 days depending on the variety. It can be even longer than this in cooler temperatures.

This is how long it will take to actually see the grass growing. Until this point, the seed, or the soil and mulch in contact with the seed, must stay moist. It doesn’t need to be soggy or swimming, but moist.

Once the new grass is visible, the roots are also growing down into the soil. This happens quite quickly. As soil moisture below ground is more accessible to the roots, the plant is not so vulnerable now. However, don’t reduce the amount of watering on new grass seeds yet.

Seeds will not sprout all at the same time. Seeds will be buried at different depths, absorb water differently, or be of different quality or maturity. Many seed mixtures are blends that will have different characteristics affecting their development. It is important to keep the surface level of soil constantly moist until all seeds have germinated.

Until the planted area is densely showing green growth, don’t allow it to dry out. The percentage of seed germination is in your control, though people often blame a thin lawn on the “lousy seed that didn’t come up” It is possible to increase the percentage of germinating seeds.

Existing Lawn Being Over-seeded

Normally a lawn should be watered deeply but infrequently. Change this when you are watering for new grass seed. Now you must water every day. Set automatic timers for about 5 to 10 minutes early in the morning and again at mid-day. Observe and adjust this time. Sprinklers have a broad range of flow in gallons per minute and you must use your judgment here.

Watering done by hand or hose-end sprinklers must be consistently and evenly applied. It should provide approximately the same amount of moisture throughout, but less in shady areas.

Twice daily watering is essential until the new grass is up, then after one more week, reduce to once per day. Adjust this pattern according to season and temperature demands.

Bare Lawn Areas Being Filled In

If there are areas of substantial size or number, follow the same instructions as above. For smaller amounts or areas, if hand watering is practical, leave the lawn on its normal irrigation schedule. Supplement the bare areas twice daily, or as needed, to keep the new seed moist.

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