Turf Care Instructions

August 7, 2020

The following blog will discuss the turf care instructions for each grass species we supply. Please ensure you are reading the correct instructions for the grass type as they vary between the different species. 

turf care instructions

Tall Fescue Turf Care Instructions 

  • It is important that the turf is laid on the same day that it is received. Finelawn will not warrantee the quality of our turf product if it is stored prior to use.
  • Apply Turf pre-plant fertilizer to the soil at 4kgs per 100m2 prior to installing the turf.
  • Tall Fescue is a deep-rooted cool season grass which performs best on well drained soils in the transition zone. The deep rooting system helps it withstand drought conditions. It is characterised by having dark green, coarse leaf blades and it relatively hard wearing compared to other cool season grasses. 
  • Immediately after the turf is laid, water to saturation point. Thereafter, keep moist until established. This will take approximately 14-21 days. In summer, when evaporation levels are high, it is vital to maintain the moisture content of the plant.
  •  It is preferable to apply water in the mornings rather than during the day. Avoid excessive watering as this will lead to ponding.
  •  Mow frequently during the establishment phase at the highest setting on your mower to avoid scalping. This will assist in promoting root development. The initial mow should be undertaken 7 - 10 days after installation at a height of 40mm - 50mm. Thereafter, mowing every 5 - 6 days at no lower than 40mm, is recommended through this period. Once the turf is established, normal mowing can continue at a recommended height of 40mm. 
  • Mow using a catcher to avoid leaf litter decomposing and creating an ideal environment for fungal infection. Ensure the mower blades are sharp and maintain a minimum mowing height of 40mm. It is preferable to mow in different directions with each cut to avoid a graining effect.
  • Apply FINELAWN GOLD fertiliser four (4) weeks after installation and thereafter every 8-10 weeks at 2.5kgs per 100m2. A regular application of fertiliser ensures maintenance of the colour, vigour and density of the sward and therefore reduces the likelihood of weed infestations.
  • The lawn may require spraying for broadleaf weeds on a bi-annual basis. FINELAWN recommends using Banvine or Triumph Gold at label rates. It is also recommended that the lawn is sprayed with Etho-Pro at label rates every 3 - 4 months as a pre-germination application to prevent contamination with other grasses. Please contact the office for advice and recommendations on spraying practices. 

Fine Fescue Turf Instructions 

  • This turf is comprised of a blend of chewing’s fescue and creeping red fescue. This turf can be treated with the selective herbicides known as “Gallant” or “Ignite” to remove foreign grasses such as paspalum, couch, agricultural grasses, Yorkshire fog and poa annua. Used at label rates these have no detrimental effect on fine fescue if applied during the period September through to April. 
  •  Install this turf immediately upon delivery. Finelawn will not take any responsibility for turf that is stored prior to installation.  
  • Apply Turf Preplant Fertiliser @ 4kgs per 100m2 to the soil just prior to installing the turf.  
  • Fescue is temperamental to install in summer and must be watered appropriately. It should be thoroughly watered as soon as it is installed. Our installation teams commonly set up the sprinklers to commence as soon as they have 40-50m2 laid. Thereafter, watering should ideally take place in the morning with a thorough soaking. Please ensure that none of this water ponds because the sun rapidly heats this water and it will scorch the grass. Ideally, the turf should also receive a light application of water at the hottest part of the day. This should take the form of a light spray between 2.00pm – 4.00pm and this is simply designed to take the heat away from the surface. This is advisable for the first 7 -10 days.  
  • Evapotranspiration which is the rate at which water is lost from the combined soil and plant system normally registers in the vicinity of 4mm - 6mm per day in summer. It is important that the amount of water applied daily replaces this as a minimum requirement. The easiest way to determine how much you are applying is to place a bowl on the ground under your sprinklers and measure exactly how much water is being applied.  
  • Mow frequently throughout the establishment phase at a height of 35mm. Once established this can be gradually reduced to a height of 25 – 35mm. Always use a catcher to remove the litter.  
  • Apply FINELAWN GOLD fertilizer four (4) weeks after installation and then every 8-12 weeks at 2.7kgs/100m2. A regular application of fertilizer ensures maintenance of the colour, vigour and density of the sward and therefore reduces the likelihood of weed infestations and diseases. This is a key component to maintaining the turf in a healthy state after establishment. 
  • The lawn may require spraying for broadleaf weeds on a bi-annual basis. FINELAWN recommends using Banvine or Triumph Gold at label rates.

Rye Grass Turf Instructions

  •  It is important that the turf is laid on the same day that it is received. Finelawn will not warrantee the quality of our turf product if it is stored prior to use.
    Apply Turf Preplant fertilizer to the soil at 4kgs per 100m2 prior to installing the turf. 
  • Immediately after the turf is laid, water to saturation point. Thereafter, keep moist until established. This will take approximately 14-21 days. In summer, when evaporation levels are high, it is vital to maintain the moisture content of the plant. 
  • It is preferable to apply water in the mornings rather than during the day. Avoid excessive watering as this will lead to ponding. The ponded water heats up and scorches the plant. 
  • Mow frequently during the establishment phase at the highest setting on your mower to avoid scalping. This will assist in promoting root development. The initial mowing should be at 40mm - 50mm. Thereafter, mowing every 5-6 days at no lower than 35mm, is optimal through this period. Once the turf is established, normal mowing can continue at a recommended height of 30mm. 
  • Mow using a catcher to avoid leaf litter decomposing and creating an ideal environment for fungal infection. Ensure the mower blades are sharp and maintain a minimum mowing height of 30mm. It is preferable to mow in different directions with each cut to avoid a graining effect.
  • Apply FINELAWN GOLD fertiliser four (4) weeks after installation and then every 10-12 weeks at 25grams/m2. A regular application of fertiliser ensures maintenance of the colour, vigour and density of the sward and therefore reduces the likelihood of weed infestations and diseases. This is a key component to maintaining the turf in a healthy state after establishment. 
  • The lawn may require spraying for broadleaf weeds on a bi-annual basis. FINELAWN recommends using Banvine or Triumph Gold at label rates.


rye grass picture

Kentucky Bluegrass Turf Instructions

  • It is important that the turf is laid on the same day that it is received. Finelawn will not warrantee the quality of our turf product if it is stored prior to use. 
  • Apply Turf Preplant fertilizer to the soil at 4kgs per 100m2 prior to installing the turf.
  •  Immediately after the turf is laid, water to saturation point. Thereafter, keep moist until established. This will take approximately 14-21 days. In summer, when evaporation levels are high, it is vital to maintain the moisture content of the plant. 
  • It is preferable to apply water in the mornings rather than during the day. Avoid excessive watering as this will lead to ponding. The ponded water heats up and scorches the plant. 
  • Mow frequently during the establishment phase at the highest setting on your mower to avoid scalping. This will assist in promoting root development. The initial mowing should be at 40mm - 50mm. Thereafter, mowing every 5-6 days at no lower than 35mm, is optimal through this period. Once the turf is established, normal mowing can continue at a recommended height of 30mm. 
  • Mow using a catcher to avoid leaf litter decomposing and creating an ideal environment for fungal infection. Ensure the mower blades are sharp and maintain a minimum mowing height of 30mm. It is preferable to mow in different directions with each cut to avoid a graining effect.
  •  Apply FINELAWN GOLD fertiliser four (4) weeks after installation and then every 10-12 weeks at 25grams/m2. A regular application of fertiliser ensures maintenance of the colour, vigour and density of the sward and therefore reduces the likelihood of weed infestations and diseases. This is a key component to maintaining the turf in a healthy state after establishment.
  • The lawn may require spraying for broadleaf weeds on a bi-annual basis. FINELAWN recommends using Banvine or Triumph Gold at label rates. Please contact the office for advice and recommendations on spraying practices.

Common Kikuyu Care Instructions

  • It’s important that the turf is laid on the same day that it is received. Finelawn will not warrantee the quality of our turf product if it is stored prior to use. Apply Pre-Plant Starter fertiliser to the soil at 4kgs per 100m2 prior to installing the turf.  
  • Common Kikuyu is a warm-season grass which performs best on well drained soils in the transition zone or warmer climates. It is characterised by having underground runners (rhizomes) and above ground runners (stolons). It is hard wearing, durable, drought tolerant and resistant to both fungal disease and chewing insects.
  • Immediately after the turf is laid, water to saturation point. Thereafter, keep moist until established. This will take approximately 14-21 days.  
  • It is preferable to apply water in the mornings rather than during the day. Avoid excessive watering as this will lead to ponding. The ponded water heats up and scorches the plant. 
  • Mow frequently during the establishment phase at the highest setting on your mower to avoid scalping. This will assist in promoting root development. The initial mowing should be at 40mm - 50mm. Thereafter, mowing every 5-6 days at no lower than 35mm, is optimal through this period. Once the turf is established, normal mowing can continue at a recommended height of 20mm - 30mm.  
  • Mow regularly using a catcher. Ensure the mower blades are sharp and maintain a minimum mowing height of 30mm. It is preferable to mow in different directions with each cut to avoid a graining effect.  
  • Apply FINELAWN GOLD fertiliser four (4) weeks after installation and thereafter every 10-12 weeks at 2.5kgs per 100m2. A regular application of fertiliser ensures maintenance of the colour, vigour and density of the sward and therefore reduces the likelihood of weed infestations.  
  • The lawn may require spraying for broadleaf weeds on a bi-annual basis. FINELAWN recommends using Banvine at label rates. Kikuyu is highly susceptible to certain broadleaf herbicides. Please seek advice from the office prior to applications. 
  • It is recommended to scalp the sward with a rotary mower early in spring, thereafter applying a dressing or Turf Gold fertilizer. Whilst this may appear to be a harsh treatment at the time it will lead to a leafier, finer sward over the summer months and avoid the necessity for verticutting.

Couch Grass Turf Instructions

  • It’s important that the turf is laid on the same day that it is received. Finelawn will not warrantee the quality of our turf product if it is stored prior to use. Apply Pre-Plant Starter fertilizer to the soil at 4kgs per 100m2 prior to installing the turf.  
  • Finelawn couch is a warm season grass which performs best on well drained soils in the transition zone or in warmer or coastal climates. It is characterised by being darker in colouration, finer and leafier than common couch. It is hard wearing, durable, drought tolerant and resistant to both fungal disease and chewing insects. As a warm season grass it is likely to discolour in winter. If exposed to consistently low temperatures or repeated frosts it will go into dormancy and turn light brown in colour when this occurs. It will fully recuperate once warmer temperatures prevail.  
  • Immediately after the turf is laid, water to saturation point. Thereafter, keep moist until established. This will take approximately 14 - 21 days.
  •  It is preferable to apply water in the mornings rather than during the day. Avoid excessive watering as this will lead to ponding. The ponded water heats up and scorches the plants.  
  • Mow frequently during the establishment phase at the highest setting on your mower to avoid scalping. This will assist in promoting root development. The initial mowing should be at 35mm - 40mm. Thereafter, mowing every 5 - 6 days at no lower than 30mm, is optimal through this period. Once the turf is established, normal mowing can continue at a recommended height of 25mm.  
  • Mow regularly using a catcher. Ensure the mower blades are sharp and maintain a minimum mowing height of 25mm. It is preferable to mow in different directions with each cut to avoid a graining effect. 
  •  Apply FINELAWN GOLD fertiliser four (4) weeks after installation and thereafter every 10-12 weeks at 3.0kgs per 100m2. A regular application of fertiliser ensures maintenance of the colour, vigour and density of the sward and therefore reduces the likelihood of weed infestations.  
  • The lawn may require spraying for broadleaf weeds on a bi-annual basis. FINELAWN recommends using Banvine at label rates. Couch grass is highly susceptible to certain herbicides. Please seek advice from the office prior to applications.
  • It is recommended to scalp the sward with a rotary mower early in spring, thereafter applying a dressing or Turf Gold fertilizer. This will lead to a leafier, finer sward over the summer months and avoid the necessity for verticutting.

If you have any further queries about the maintenance of your lawn please contact the FINELAWN office or visit our website at www.finelawn.co.nz for more information!

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