I have tried overseeding with a tall fescue for the last few years and I'm not sure it's doing any good. I mow low, use a broadcast spreader and water 15 minutes four times a day for about two weeks, but at the end of the two weeks I can still see ungerminated seeds sitting on the ground with very little to absolutely no new growth. I've detatched and core aerated as well, but still nothing.

I've considered mixing the seed in a wheel barrow with a few bags of garden soil and manually raking it into the yard, but that seems like an awful amount of back breaking labor for a 1/2 acre yard and really defeats the purpose of the broadcast spreader -- which seems a lot easier. Is there a proper way to use a broadcast spreader, or is it one of those things that garden stores sell to catch the rubes?

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The seed isn't going to germinate and grow unless it's in contact with some soil (not a layer of dead matted grass) and the seed is not disturbed until its own roots can hold it in place.

"Aggressive" watering can wash the seed around, and therefore do more harm than good if you are watering several times a day. It might be better to give the lawn a very good soaking, sow the seed, and then leave it alone for at least a week.

Also, I hope you mean you are "mowing low" before you spread the seed, but not afterwards. I'm in the UK, and I wouldn't want to mow a newly seeded lawn at all for at least 4 weeks after sowing - but waiting two weeks for germination time might not be anything to worry about if the weather was relatively cool and dry. I reseeded my own lawn last autumn, and it took about 2 weeks before any germination and still looked very patchy after 4 weeks - but 12 months later, it looks just fine.

I would guess your lack of success is caused by some or all of the above, though your post doesn't have an obvious clue to say exactly what you did wrong.

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