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Country Discussion Topics
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How does Red Fescue do in shade?
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Question from Mike in Va.    Posted 04-10-2002 at 11:19:40       [Reply]  [No Email]
Hey out there-
Wondering if you've had any experience in planting a good grass for a shaded area. Heard that the Red Fescue variety will work, and that it creeps well. Before I jump into buying a big bag of the stuff I wanted to run it by you folks.
We've recently opened up about a 1000' of ditchline that we're about to fence. We've got a bumper crop of Honeysuckle & Catbriar going and have cleared most of that with a loader. Now we want to plant a grass along the fenceline. The pasture being fenced is Orchard Grass and Red Clover.
Any suggestions? Thanks in advance to you...

geo in MI    Posted 04-10-2002 at 19:17:45       [Reply]  [No Email]
The fescue that I'm thinking about is creeping red fescue, used mainly for lawns in shady places. It is pretty fine textured, fairly low growing, as compared to Kentucky Bluegrass or perennial rye, etc. It seems very slow to get started, but once it takes hold, makes a great lawn. For pasture or orchards, I would imagine something else would be better.

buck    Posted 04-10-2002 at 12:03:41       [Reply]  [No Email]

I agee with others If I had a good stand of clover and orchard grass I would be reluctant to introduce the fescue

Jim(MO)    Posted 04-10-2002 at 11:47:02       [Reply]  [Send Email]
Check with your county, state or university ag. extensions. I have orchid, timothy & clover in some CRP ground and for some reason fescue is a big no-no. Suspect it might be too agressive and take over eventually.

Mike in Va.    Posted 04-10-2002 at 12:52:02       [Reply]  [No Email]
Heard the same thing about how aggressive Fescue can get. Will the Orchard Grass & Red Clover do well in the shade though? There is a heavy line of mature Red Maples (24" & bigger) that follow the ditchline on my neighbors side that keeps the ditch in heavy shade most of the summer.

Hogman    Posted 04-10-2002 at 18:55:37       [Reply]  [No Email]
Orchard grass was bred to work in shade,under trees in Orchards. Sorta like namin a blue heeler blue Ya noe.

Conservation folks freak out at tha very word fescue. They have even tried and still are to get it classified a nox weed here in Mo. Would put tha cattle business out of business. It's sorta like burmuda tho, once You get it You got it!

PCC-AL    Posted 04-11-2002 at 15:57:58       [Reply]  [No Email]
Bahia and Kudsu are really fun too, Hogman. You can spend lots of bucks trying to get rid of either one.

Mike in Va.    Posted 04-10-2002 at 19:51:30       [Reply]  [No Email]
Duh, you got me there Hogman. Makes sense enough.
We got deep shade, haven't seen too many Orchards that got what it is in this ditch, but I'll give it a go with the Orchard Grass. How will the clover do in shade? Thanks for your input. Mike

Jim(MO)    Posted 04-11-2002 at 10:05:03       [Reply]  [Send Email]
The clover (not sure what kind) does ok along the woods where it's shaded most of the time. Also does fine in 3' to 4' foot high grasses. I can only mow some of the CRP from mid July to mid August to no less than 8" high and the clover thrives down in there where it doesn't get much sun.

Mike again...    Posted 04-11-2002 at 11:06:21       [Reply]  [No Email]
Thats good to read there Jim,
Out in our pastures the clover really jumps when we're about to cut hay. It can't stand too much direct sun, can it? I wasn't sure how it would do in the heavy shade. I won't be using this bag of Red Fescue any where near the Orchard grass now. I've got another place about a 1/2 mile from the fields. We cleared a spot in deep woods along a branch 2 years ago. There is no established grass near it. Woods all around. I'll use it there. No sense not using it somewhere. It has to beat the current cover... Thanks again for the input. Mike

PS Jim(MO    Posted 04-10-2002 at 11:48:44       [Reply]  [No Email]
Have heard it makes a pretty good lawn though.

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