Everything to Know about Kentucky Bluegrass

Kentucky Bluegrass is one of the most beautiful varieties of lawn grass out there. When given its preferred growing conditions, this grass produces a dense, lush, green lawn that lives up to its reputation. KBG is known as one of the more durable varieties on the market, making it a perfect choice for yards with high traffic, pets, or kids. Here is a guide on what to expect when choosing Kentucky Bluegrass sod for your lawn.

Physical properties of Kentucky Bluegrass. KBG is a cool-season lawn grass that is a great fit for northern climates with warm to hot summers but cold winters. It is a premier sod choice for Minnesota homeowners due to these properties. The easiest method of identifying KBG is to look at the tip of the blade of grass. Each KBG blade resembles the shape of a canoe boat, where it is tapered off at the top and bottom.

Kentucky Bluegrass Maintenance. 

  • Watering and drought tolerance: Bluegrass has the natural ability to survive several weeks or longer of drought. KBG has a shallow root system, so if it doesn’t rain, it will need to be watered a couple of times a week during the summer to keep it green.
  •  Fertilization: Use a blend of fertilizer similar to 5-14-42 during the summer (every 6 weeks after sod is installed), and when you winterize your yard use 20-10-10.
  • Mowing: Start mowing your sod 7-10 days after installation at 2-2 1/2 inches.
  • Weed prevention: Spray with a weed killer as you see fit. If you see weeds starting, take care of them as soon as possible to prevent spreading.

Have more questions? Reach out. We are available to help answer your questions regarding Kentucky Bluegrass or sod! Just give us a call or send us a message. We are committed to growing a superior product at a low price, and we pride ourselves on impeccable customer service.

How to Get Your Yard in Shape Before Summer’s Outdoor Activities

Spring is the perfect time to get your yard back in shape after the long winter. As we turn our attention to lawn care, rather than snow removal, it is time to patch dead grass areas, de-thatch, and fertilize. Check out our easy pro tips on improving the appearance of your yard.

De-Thatch to Encourage Growth. Thatch is simply the layer of dead grass, roots, and debris that accumulates between the soil surface and the green grass blades above. It can form a thick mat that prevents water and air from reaching the soil. To prevent this, de-thatching should be done once a year in the early spring, usually in April. If your lawn gets too green and too thick, it’s too late to de-thatch. De-thatching, which can be done to smaller lawns with a special rake, allows you to get the thatch out of the grass, allowing air to get at the base of the plant and gives it a healthy start in the spring after a long winter. Those with larger lawns may choose to rent a dethatching machine, which is similar in appearance to a push lawn mower.

Replenish your lawn with fertilizer. Fertilizers are important to lawn care because they can expedite plant growth. Fertilizers make plants and crops grow more quickly and appear greener, fuller and healthier- we suggest using a blend low in nitrogen and high in potash. Most nutrients for your lawn are water-soluble and, over time through rain or irrigation, the water will carry nutrients out of your lawn and leave it nutrient deficient. An unhealthy lawn is susceptible to disease, and fertilizer can replenish those nutrients and keep your lawn healthy.

Repair or replace your lawn with sod. B&B Hoffman Sod Farms can help get your yard back in shape with its supply of fertilizer. But for new lawns, sod is an excellent option to jump-start the growing process because it gives you an immediate green lawn with mature density and a solid root system. Lawns established with turfgrass sod are an immediate joy and source of pride, while lawns started with seed, sprigs, or plugs take from 2 to 3 years of constant work to mature. In an instant, turfgrass sod creates a soft, clean, and safe playing surface for children, lawn games, and family entertainment. 

Spring is a great time to sod, allowing you to take advantage of our rainy season to help with watering. The cool temperatures also help with keeping on top of watering. B&B Hoffman Sod Farms in Elk River provides easy-to-use small rolls that make laying turfgrass yourself easy and efficient. There is no expensive machinery needed, making Small Sod Rolls the do-it-yourselfers product of choice.

To learn more about spring lawn care and the products that B&B Hoffman Sod Farms offers, visit them online at bbhoffmansodev.wpengine.com or call 763-434-6572.

Tips on How to Plan Your Dream Lawn

We have officially hit the part of winter where I start daydreaming of days spent outside soaking up the summer sun. But, since there is still snow on the ground it is a great time to start daydreaming and planning your ideal lawn.

Designing a lawn is like designing any part of your landscape. You will need to consider how you plan to use the space and what your needs are. Here are a few tips for designing your perfect lawn.

Using the space: ‘how do you use the lawn?’ If you have kids, they’re going to want a large open, grassy area to kick the ball or play catch. While, if you’re an older couple, you may prefer just enough grass to provide an open, clean look to occasionally entertain on.

Initial installation: In comparison to planter beds or patios, a lawn can be inexpensive to install. That being said, a larger lawn will require more resources which has an impact on price. If you are debating on what to start your lawn with check out this resource on sod vs. seed.

Proximity to your home: Lawn can double as a great pathway or entertaining area, it is nice to have lush green grass just off your patio or back door to expand the usable space in your landscape.

Maintenance: A beautiful lawn requires mowing, edging, fertilizing, aeration, and occasional weed control to keep it looking lush. If you start your lawn out by laying sod, you will have an instant lawn with mature density and a solid root system. While a lawn that is started with seed can take two to three years of dedicated work to mature. 

Drainage: Sod or seed won’t grow in an area that is constantly pooling with water. If you have an area of your property that is known to have bad drainage be sure to create a drainage system first.

Highlight your garden: A carpet of green lawn looks beautiful surrounding a garden. The openness of a grassy area makes a good visual contrast to the varied shapes and colors of trees and shrubs.

The Minnesota winter is a great time to start planning your dream yard. Follow these tips and head to Pinterest for some inspiration. 

When you’re ready to chat about starting your lawn out with sod reach out to B&B Hoffman Sod, we would love to help! Turfgrass sod creates a soft, clean, and safe playing surface for children and pets, provides a great environment for lawn games, and improves family entertaining.

Be Prepared for Leaves

Minnesota offers beautiful fall colors every year but it also means- leaves, leaves everywhere! They can be a hassle, but these tips will help you deal with them this fall.

No one enjoys the back-breaking work of raking. Here is how you can get the job over quickly:

  • Let gravity help you out by raking leaves downhill if possible.
  • Skip raking and move straight to mowing. Chopped leaves can allow for vital nutrients to return to the soil.  
  • Use a leaf blower to create piles to pick up and bag.

Homeowners want to avoid more than 10-20% of their grass to be covered in leaves when the snow falls. Excessive leaf matter going into winter may smother the grass and inhibit growth, as well as promote mold diseases, and encourage turf damage from critters like voles and mice.

Is it beneficial for your lawn to spend time raking and bagging leaves, or should you plan on mowing over everything and mulching the rest? Or simply leave them be?

Raking. Improve your arm strength by raking (or using a leaf blower) to gather a pile, then bag for disposal, or deliver to a compost site. Depending on the size of your lawn and number of trees on site, this may take an hour or a full day. In order to rake efficiently, lawns should be dry and trimmed. Additional bag fees or compost facility charges may deter people from going this route, but the excitement of jumping in a large leaf pile has its benefits too.

Mowing and mulching. Chopping grass and leaves into small pieces (also known as mulching) so they incorporate into your lawn canopy via a lawnmower benefits the soil in a number of ways. Nutrients and organic matter may add nitrogen to the lawn and assist in root growth. Some leaf types have even been shown to reduce weed germination over time. Mulching may require more frequent mowing in the fall, but specialized attachments and mulching mowers can also be purchased to make this job easier.

Leaving it be. If you have no trees and the wind blows away more than 10% of your lawn coverage, you may be off the hook for raking and mowing. Use your extra time wisely before the Minnesota winter hits!

Consult with our experts, purchase sod and find winterizing fertilizer at B&B Hoffman Sod Farms in Elk River by visiting us online or calling 763-434-6572.

Avoid These Common Fall Lawn Care Mistakes

Even though the temperatures are starting to drop, it’s important not to abandon lawn care yet! Help ensure that your lawn is healthy and beautiful this spring by avoiding these common fall lawn care mistakes. 

Leaving Fallen Leaves

Minnesota autumn brings a vibrant display of leaves in hues of red and orange that are beautiful to view. However, once these leaves fall to the ground it can set your lawn up for trouble. You may be tempted to ignore them but too much leaf cover can suffocate your grass and prevent oxygen from reaching its roots. Leaf cover can also trap moisture and prevent oxygen from reaching your lawn, creating a good environment for lawn disease to thrive. Cleaning up fallen leaves or mulching them with your mower will help promote your lawn’s health.

Watering as Usual

As the weather gets cooler and the days grow shorter, your lawn will not need as much supplemental water to survive. Cutting back on how much you water in the fall will help prevent fungal growth and prepare your lawn for winter. However, if you have just installed your sod make sure you are watering adequately. Water your new sod every day for 1 week and long enough so that when you step onto the sod it’s squishy. Then after one week, (in the fall only) you can water every other or every three days; just don’t let it dry out.  Squishy isn’t necessary.  

Forgetting to Fertilize

While many homeowners may think fertilizer should be applied in the spring, fall is an ideal time to refresh your lawn before going dormant in the winter. Fall fertilization will assist in storing food and ensuring strong roots throughout the winter, and greener grass after the spring thaw. Apply fertilizer around the first week in October for the best results. We recommend a blend of 20-10-10, which can be purchased at our shop.

DON’T Avoid Planning Ahead for Spring

If you’ve been holding off until spring to lay sod, there is still time yet this year. Cool temperatures and regular rainfall this time of year encourages our natural sod grass to retain moisture. Consult with our experts, purchase sod, and find winterizing fertilizer at B&B Hoffman Sod Farms in Elk River by visiting us online or calling 763-434-6572.

Can I Install Sod in the Fall? Learn What you Need to Do

Your time outside this summer may have you planning for how you can update your lawn for next year. If your grass is on the list for an upgrade, why not start this fall?! Due to the warm weather, it is often thought that summer is the best time to install sod, but this isn’t true! Sod can be installed at any time throughout the growing season. However, there are a couple of factors to consider when installing sod in the fall. 

Cool fall temperatures.

Fall usually brings cooler temperatures and the occasional rainfall. Not only are these cooler temperatures easier on your new grass, but it is also easier on you or the laborer laying the sod. By laying sod in fall weather, you have less risk of your sod overheating. You still have to water your lawn regularly, but you will need less water as it isn’t evaporating as quickly. You can still be successful when laying sod in the summer, however, summertime is usually busier and if you’re planning on going to the cabin every weekend, it is probably best to wait for the fall to lay sod. 

When is it too late to Install?

It’s never too late to install sod if we can harvest it in our fields. There are some things to keep in mind when it comes to watering your sod. If you are blowing out your irrigation system, you will still need a water source (think garden hose & sprinklers). If it’s JUST before winter, give it a good soaking and if it freezes it will go dormant and take off in the spring. However, if it warms up again you may need to drag out the hose/sprinklers. This usually occurs in the late October/early November timeframe. We do harvest sod up until the ground is frozen or the snow is too deep, but the rule of thumb is to try and have your project done by end of October as our Minnesota November weather is very unpredictable.

Fall is a great time to lay sod. Follow these steps when installing and caring for your sod in the fall, and don’t forget to fertilize your lawn (mid-October) with a 20-10-10. If you have any questions regarding the installation of sod feel free to contact us at 763-434-8231.

Fall cleanup: rake, mulch, or do nothing?

A common question this time of year is the best way to complete fall yard cleanup. Is it beneficial for your lawn to spend time raking and bagging leaves, or should you plan on mowing over everything and mulching the rest? Better yet, spend a couple of extra hours at the apple orchard or pumpkin patch–and do nothing at all?

The truth is, it’s up to you and depends on your lawn and landscaping needs. Essentially, homeowners want to avoid more than 10-20% of their grass to be covered in leaves when the snow falls. Excessive leaf matter going into winter may smother the grass and inhibit growth, as well as promote mold diseases, and encourage turf damage from critters like voles and mice. Read on for the three most common fall clean up techniques and the pros and cons of each.

Raking. Improve your arm strength by raking (or using a leaf blower) to gather a pile, then bag for disposal, or deliver to a compost site. Depending on the size of your lawn and number of trees on site, this may take an hour or a full day. In order to rake efficiently, lawns should be dry and trimmed. Additional bag fees or compost facility charges may deter people from going this route, but the excitement of jumping in a large leaf pile has its benefits too.

Mowing and mulching. Chopping grass and leaves into small pieces (also known as mulching) so they incorporate into your lawn canopy via a lawn mower benefits the soil in a number of ways. Nutrients and organic matter may add nitrogen to the lawn and assist in root growth. Some leaf types have even been shown to reduce weed germination over time. Mulching may require more frequent mowing in the fall, but specialized attachments and mulching mowers can also be purchased to make this job easier.

Leaving it be. If you have no trees and the wind blows away more than 10% of your lawn coverage, you may be off the hook for raking and mowing. Use your extra time wisely before the snow sets in!

Planning ahead for spring. Already dreaming of epic outdoor parties for next year? Don’t wait to upgrade your lawn! Apply fertilizer every fall to provide nutrients for grass to create deep roots and stay healthy in a dormant season. If you’ve been holding off until spring to lay sod, there is still time yet this year. Cool temperatures and regular rainfall this time of year encourages our Kentucky Bluegrass turf to retain moisture. Make sure to water regularly until the ground is frozen.

Consult with our experts, purchase sod and find winterizing fertilizer at B&B Hoffman Sod Farms in Elk River by visiting us online or calling 763-434-6572.

 

Thanks for supporting our family farm for 30 years

B&B Hoffman Sod farm is celebrating its 30th year of producing high quality sod for Midwest homeowners, landscapers, and builders. As a family run company deeply rooted in the sod growing business, we are committed to producing the best Kentucky Bluegrass turf in Minnesota.

Our sod is grown at one of three farms in central Minnesota, offering a slight variety in temperature and terrain to ensure a fruitful season. Seeds are planted in late summer (a lot of seed, about 70 pounds per acre!) and we irrigate as necessary. Our sod is fertilized regularly to produce lush, beautiful grass. Typically, sod is harvested about 12-16 months after plantings to ensure a hardy root structure.

We take great pride in mowing every field, every other day. It is one of the most important parts of the growing process, as mowing stimulates root growth. After each field is mowed, we follow up with a roller to compact the soil and counteract any tire marks.

Sod is harvested when the ground isn’t frozen–usually April to November. We prefer to harvest in the morning, so the ground temperature (and therefore the sod temperature) is lower, increasing the shelf life of the product.  We offer two sizes of sod for our customers, small rolls are ideal for homeowners, while large rolls are perfect for wide open spaces or commercial properties. B&B Hoffman Sod offers convenient delivery throughout the Midwest or pickup at our Elk River, MN location.

We are proud to grow about 600 acres of sod every year. Our family name is not just on our trucks, but in every blade of grass we grow, every delivery we make and every question we answer for our customers. We know this is what makes our company so strong.

To learn more about  B&B Hoffman Sod Farms and our family business, visit us online at bbhoffmansodev.wpengine.com or call 763-434- 6572.

Time to spring clean your yard

Spring is the ideal time to get your yard back in shape after a long winter.  As we turn our attention to lawn care, rather than snow removal, it is time to patch dead grass areas, de-thatch, and fertilize.  Check out our easy pro tips on improving the appearance of your yard.

De-Thatch to encourage growth. Remove dead layers of grass, roots, and debris that accumulates between the soil surface and the green grass blades by de-thatching. If not performed regularly, you  may notice portions of grass that form a thick mat, preventing water and air from reaching the soil. To prevent this, de-thatching should be done once a year in the early spring, before grass becomes bright green and thick. De-thatching, which can be done to smaller lawns with a special rake, allows you to get the thatch out of the grass, allowing air to get at the base of the plant and gives it a healthy start in the spring after a long winter. Those with larger lawns may choose to rent a de-thaching machine, which can be either be pulled behind a lawn tractor or there is a push version likely available at a local general rental store.

Replenish your lawn with fertilizer. Fertilizers are important to lawn care because they can expedite plant growth, making plants and crops grow quickly and appear greener, fuller, and healthier. Most nutrients for your lawn are water-soluble and, over time through snow, rain or irrigation, the water will carry nutrients out of your lawn and leave it nutrient deficient. An unhealthy lawn is susceptible to disease, and fertilizer can replenish those nutrients and keep your lawn healthy. Our experts recommend fertilizing early in the spring, following up every four weeks through the month of June.

Repair or replace your lawn with sod. For new lawns, sod is an excellent option to jump-start the growing process, as it gives you an immediate green lawn with mature density and a solid root system. Turfgrass sod creates a soft, clean and safe playing surface for children, lawn games, and family entertaining. Our easy-to-use small sod rolls make laying turfgrass yourself easy and efficient. There is no expensive machinery needed, making small sod rolls the do-it-yourselfers product of choice.

Prevent weeds and over-watering. Pre-emergent weed control should go down when the ground temperature reaches 50 degrees to avoid any seeds that may have dropped last fall to germinate. No need to water your lawn this early in the season just to expedite greening. Spring rains typically produce sufficient moisture for awakening lawns. Only irrigate if grass shows signs of dehydration.

To learn more about spring lawn care and the products that B&B Hoffman Sod Farms offers, visit us online at bbhoffmansodev.wpengine.com or call 763-434-6572.

 

Early Autumn Lawn Care Tips

 

As temperatures begin to cool and leaves fall, autumn brings ideal conditions to care for your lawn. Before thinking about dusting off that snowblower, here are a few tips to ensure your lawn will be beautiful next spring.

Lay Sod. If you’ve been waiting to lay sod, now is the time to do so. Cool temperatures and regular rainfall allows sod to retain moisture and root quickly. Since we are experiencing a rather hot fall so far, plan to install sod on an overcast day to avoid stress on the plant. Prepare your soil by removing debris on the surface and filling in any small holes. Use a rake to loosen the soil and add any topsoil you may need. Apply the sod in a bricklike pattern, using an utility knife to fit the sod together tightly. Once the sod is in place water it immediately. Typically, it takes sod 2-3 weeks to root completely; avoid mowing until roots are strong, approximately 14 days after installation.

Let your soil breathe. Aerate your existing lawns in the cooler fall season to reap the benefits year round. Aeration creates small holes into the soil, either by using a spike or a machine to remove a core of grass and soil from the lawn. Benefits of aerating are: stronger grass roots, reduced water runoff, improved air exchange between the soil, and less susceptibility to disease. Increase root growth by allowing your grass to breath and minimizing thatch build up by aerating prior to applying a fall fertilizer.

Apply fall fertilizer. While many homeowners may think fertilizer should be applied in the spring, fall is an ideal time to refresh your lawn before going dormant in the winter. Fall fertilization will assist in storing food and ensuring strong roots throughout the winter, and greener grass after the spring thaw. Apply fertilizer around the first week in October for best results.

 

Purchase sod and winterizing fertilizer from B&B Hoffman Sod Farms in Elk River. To learn more about us and products we offer, visit us online or call 763-434-6572.