Monday, April 20, 2020

Filling In Those Bare Spots In The Lawn

Horticulture Hotline 04/20/20
By Bill Lamson-Scribner

Right now, at the three Possum stores, we are getting many questions about filling in dead spots from the winter. There are a few questions you want to ask yourself before you begin this task. Why is there a bare spot? How big is the bare spot? Where is the bare spot located? How quickly do I need to see results? What kind of grass do I have now? What kind of herbicides have been used on my lawn and do they inhibit the establishment of grass?

First off, you would want to know what type of sod you have and whether or not seed is even an option. St. Augustine (Charleston grass) does not have seed. 419 Bermuda grass does not produce a viable seed. Many of your zoysia grasses do not have seed. Therefore, sodding, sprigging / plugging, or fertilizing what grass you have until it fills in is an only choice. Always think long term – don’t use cheap Bermuda seed to fill-in when you have another grass, then spend the rest of your life trying to rid your lawn of the Bermuda grass you seeded.

Has a tree grown up over the years and now this area is shaded? If that is the case instead of trying to grow grass, you might be better off converting the area into a bed.

Have you had a boat parked beside your driveway or a child that has moved away (and not come back), so you have an area the size of a car that you want to fill in? Sodding this area or sprigging / plugging (cutting sod up into pieces and planting those pieces) might be a good option.

Any smaller areas the size of a baseball to the size of a basketball, I like using Cotton Burr Compost, SeaHume, and a fertilizer. Watching the grass run into these areas brings immediate gratification. This combination of products works great in insect damaged, fungus damaged, dog damaged areas or any area that needs help.

If you are going to seed (bermuda, centipede, or zoysia) remember you want your soil temperature three inches down to be 70 degrees (not quite there) in the coolest part of the yard that you are seeding. Make sure any herbicides that would impede the establishment of your grass have not been applied. Be prepared to keep the soil moist for 20 – 30 days for zoysia and centipede and 5 – 14 days for bermuda.

Always read, understand and follow product label. The product label is a Federal Law.

Monday, April 13, 2020

Keeping on Schedule - Time To Aerate

Horticulture Hotline 04/13/20
By Bill Lamson-Scribner

Wow, the Amaryllis are putting on a show! I don’t know why I never grew these as a kid other than they were so beautiful that they looked fake. One of my neighbors has an area of them and one day they were all foliage, then poof, the next day the big blooms were open.

As the night time temperatures warm up and the grass starts to actively grow, aerating should be considered for the health of your whole landscape. Wet soils compact way more than dry soils, and we have had our share of wet soils. While you have the holes open in your yard, there are many products that you can add to that root zone area that will benefit your turf, trees, and shrubs.

Aerating reduces compaction, reduces thatch, increases oxygen movement to the roots, brings beneficial microorganisms to the surface, cuts runners, and allows better penetration of water, fertilizers, or control products into the soil.

Right after aerating, while the holes are open, is a good time to add SeaHume G, BGK 7500, products containing mycorrhiza, Crab Shell, Turface and/or Cotton Burr Compost.  Even if you are not aerating, these products are great to add to your lawn and beds.
·         SeaHume G is a bio-stimulant humic acid product that will help your roots grow, soften up the soil, feed beneficial micro-organisms in the soil, make nutrients that are in the soil more available to the plants, and keep fertilizer from leaching. SeaHume G also contains 10% cold water seaweed. The seaweed also acts as a bio-stimulant and is a source of over 60 minor elements, amino acids, and natural chelating agents.
·         BGK 7500 is a granular organic product that has thatch eating bacteria mix in with a 03-03-03 fertilizer. BGK 7500 is also fortified with 6% humic acid.
·         04-04-04 Bolster and other products that contain mycorrhiza. By applying these products while the roots are exposed, the mycorrhiza can attach to the roots quickly. These friendly fungi will help the plant absorb water and nutrients from the soil while competing with bad fungus in the soil.
·         Turface can last about 20 years in the soil and help manage moisture.  This is a clay product that has been super-heated until it pops!  This makes this product sterile as well as turns it into a little capillary.  This capillary holds water and then releases it as the plant needs it.  This product is used on baseball infields to manage the moisture levels in clay; otherwise the clay would be rock hard or moist and slimy. Turface will also keep fertilizer and water from leaching in sandy soils. Turface is great for wet or dry areas (like a thermos knows whether to keep something hot or cold).
·         Cotton Burr Compost will add water holding capabilities to the soil by adding organic matter to the soil.  Cotton Burr Compost will soften up clay as well as giving sandy soil nutrient holding capacity.  Cotton Burr Compost is very high in nutrition and will also help increase populations of beneficial organisms in the soil.

All the above products will help conserve moisture as well.

Always read, understand and follow product label. The product label is a Federal Law.

Bill Lamson-Scribner can be reached during the week at Possum’s Landscape and Pest Control Supply. Possum’s has three locations 481 Long Point Rd in Mt. Pleasant (971-9601), 3325 Business Circle in North Charleston (760-2600), or 606 Dupont Rd, in Charleston (766-1511). Bring your questions to a Possum’s location, or visit us at You can also call in your questions to “ The Garden Clinic”, Saturdays from noon to 1:00, on 1250 WTMA  (The Big Talker). The Horticulture Hotline is available 24 / 7 at 

Friday, April 10, 2020

We Are Open!

When I heard the people I work with answering the phone, "hello this is Possums. We are open, may I help you?" I figured I would try to save the people calling and the people answering the phone some time by sending out this message.

We are open. Our hours are:

Possum's East (Mt Pleasant) and Possum's West (West Ashley)

Monday - Friday  7:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM

Possum's North (North Charleston)

Monday - Friday  7:30 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday 8:00 AM - Noon

We are open Good Friday and Easter Monday.

Thank you, take care and I hope to see you from six feet away, Bill