I planted some Kentucky Bluegrass under a group of trees and it germinated non-uniformly with many patches (each patch is roughly 10 inches in diameter). Can this be caused just by "complete sun" vs "complete shade" differences? I did not use mulch to cover the seed, so one alternative likely explanation is that my watering has washed away much of the seed leaving patches where seed accumulated (even though I tried to be gentle, watering three times a day for a week adds up!).

I was hoping to find some research in which someone plants grass seed under a checkerboard screen of sun and shade (a time lapse video over the first month of this would be great!), but am surprised that I can't find any. What would happen? My feeling is that it will germinate fine everywhere, but then have limited growth (e.g., about 1 inch) in the shade squares.

By the way, the Kentucky Bluegrass I used is designed for dense shade.

  • 1
    Kentucky Bluegrass has always been a full-sun/mostly sun grass, so seeing that you have a "designer" version for shade is intriguing. Please update your question with some details on the variety you used - for example, the variety's name and the name of the company that released it would be very helpful in both answering this question and for future reference for other users.
    – Jurp
    Commented Sep 3, 2021 at 9:31
  • @Jurp Ok. I added the product link into my question.
    – bobuhito
    Commented Sep 3, 2021 at 12:58
  • Well,that's a mix, not straight bluegrass, It's US law to include a tag on the bag that shows the percentage of each variety. I'm guessing the mix contains a majority of Fescues + Perennial Ryegrass. Please post the percentages. Thanks!
    – Jurp
    Commented Sep 3, 2021 at 22:30
  • Hmmm. I read some of the reviews and they talk about very quick germination and quick growth. That would not be Kentucky bluegrass (germination is 21 days). It could be annual ryegrass, which would be very bad. We did have a poster earlier this year who used a Scott's mix that was 25% or so annual ryegrass, which caused him problems. I hope that this is NOT the case for you. Scott's seeds, BTW, are over-rated and over-priced, but there's no way you'd know if you weren't in the trade.
    – Jurp
    Commented Sep 3, 2021 at 22:46
  • @Jurp You're right, it's mixed, but I think I could have asked the same question for ryegrass or bluegrass. Anyway, I experimented with two other pure (well at least >50%) Kentucky Bluegrass brands a month ago too with similar patchy results, so I decided to specify Kentucky Bluegrass. But, the latest mix that I used was that Scotts product in the link. Anyway, I'd be happy with an answer for either grass type, if you know how the checkerboard experiment would go...
    – bobuhito
    Commented Sep 3, 2021 at 23:37


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