Category Archives: Knowledge

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Step-by-Step Sod Installation Instructions

1. Rake and remove all rocks, sticks and debris from surface area of the soil.

2. Add peat moss to soil. This will retain water to feed back to the sod, as well as loosen the current soil structure. For heavy sand or clay soil, a soil amendment such as a new nutrient-rich  compost or top soil, is recommended. (Note: Some top soils contain certain amounts of peat moss already. Too much peat moss will make your new lawn very “spongy”.  For maximum water savings, add our Stockosorb polymers to your soil. They absorb many times their weight in water and redistribute the water in a slower time-release process (1 teaspoon absorbs approximately 8 oz. of water. 1 lb. covers approximately 200 sq.ft.)

Installing Sod

3. Roto-till the soil to a depth of 6-8 inches. Rake again to remove additional rocks, sticks and debris that have been brought to the surface. A wide-tooth rake is excellent for this process.

4. Rake to form a smooth surface. An iron rake works great for this. Soil compaction should be firm enough that that it will not sink or compact after the sod is laid and watered. However, it should not be too firm so that roots will not be able to work their way into the soil. The best way to test this is to walk across the soil. It should feel spongy underfoot, but not leave a very deep footprint behind. Sod should be laid on a lightly damp soil surface, so water the roto-tilled soil slightly, but make sure it’s not soggy.

5. Level to fill low spots. Leave soil 2 inches below any cement, flagstone, walks and driveways.  This will allow for the thickness of the sod roll, so that you will not have sod higher than their neighboring surfaces. Level ground 1-2 inches below sprinkler heads also.  Slant the sod bed slightly away from the house/building to allow for proper drainage.

6. Begin the sod laying process along a straight edge such as a walk, patio or driveway. Lay sod horizontally with the house or street. For irregular or oval patterns, use 2 stakes with a string tied between to develop a straight edge. Using a straight edge for a guide will save you from wasting sod, not to mention less time cutting the sod.

7. Butt edges of sod together tightly to promote rapid knitting of edges and lay the sod in a staggered brick pattern. This will make the seams less noticeable. Use a sod knife (recommended) or a serrated knife to cut around trees, irregular borders and other areas.

8. Lightly fertilize the day of sod installation. We recommend our fertilizer mixture, as it has been specifically designed for us and our New Mexico sod. A 50 lb. bag will cover approximately 7000-7500 square feet, which should last approximately 4-6 applications. Fertilizer should always be watered into the lawn immediately after application to avoid burning the sod.

9. Water sod heavily and thoroughly after installation for the first two days. Thorough watering during the first 48 hours is crucial to the success of your sod. Water heavily enough to see water on the ground surface, but not standing water. This should be done 3 times per day for the first 2 days.

10. Water thoroughly every day for this first 10-14 days, but do not flood after the first 48 hours. After the 14th day, gradually reduce watering to every other day for a week. After 21 days, you should be able to determine if your sod will need more or less watering based on it’s response to your watering cycle. Check our Water Saving Advice to learn how to measure the amount of water your specific irrigation system distributes, as all irrigation systems differ.

11. Fertilize lawn 4-6 weeks after installation. Fertilizer should always be watered into the lawn immediately after application to avoid burning the sod.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION

  • Foot and pet traffic should be kept to a minimum the first two weeks.
  • Two weeks after sod installation a majority of the roots will be bonded to the soil below.
  • Three weeks after installation, the seams should start to disappear.
  • Bluegrass or our other blends should be fertilized 4 times per year: early March, late May, early September and late October.
  • Consultations before, during or after installation of sod are available at $75/hr. (1 hr. minimum)

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How much sod can my half-ton truck carry?

Category : Knowledge , Ordering Info

Unless you have a truck from the 1960’s or older, “half-ton” does not accurately describe hauling capacity. Today’s half-ton pickups are capable of hauling more than 1000 pounds (1/2 ton). We have successfully loaded many half-ton trucks with one pallet (approximately 2000-2300 pounds depending on water weight).  However, we do not recommend carrying MORE than 1 pallet in your half-ton truck.

IMPORTANT: With this being said, we still HIGHLY recommend checking with your specific truck’s manufacturer (Chevrolet, Ford, GMC., etc.) or your owner’s manual for your truck’s exact hauling specifications. 

Stonegate Turfgrass Ranch takes no liability for damage to your vehicle.


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Calculate The Area for Sod

EXAMPLE:
1. MEASURE the area where you want to lay sod (length and width in feet). Length = 22 ft.
Width = 35 ft.
2. MULTIPLY the length by width. This will give you the total square footage. 22 x 35 = 770 sq.ft. total
3. To figure the cost (not yet including tax), MULTIPLY the square footage from above (#2) by our current price per square foot. 770 sq.ft.
x $.59 / sq.ft. **
= $454.30 plus tax (Moriarty, NM)

Does not include any delivery charges
**ABQ price
  • Sod is available in rolls from 7 sq.ft. (18″ x 54″) to 300 sq.ft.
  • Our regular rolls are 7 square feet.
  • One Pallet = 455 sq.ft. and weighs approximately 2300 lbs. depending on water content (adds weight).

PLEASE DOUBLE CHECK YOUR MEASUREMENTS.
We DO NOT take responsibility for
incorrect square footage figures.

Calculate Your Sod Price |


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Great Reasons to Grow a Lawn

Mowing, watering, fertilizing, edging and spraying a home lawn requires commitment and attention. However, it also serves you well and improves your environment.

The next time you are mowing, thinking that Xeriscape may be the ONLY alternative, consider this:

A. The lawn area (approx. 1000 sq.ft. per home) in a block of eight average homes has the cooling effect of about 70 tons of refrigerated air-conditioning. One ton of refrigerated air-conditioning will cool approximately 400 sq.ft. of interior space. The average home requires about 3-4 ton of cooling capacity to perform its function. Consider then, how much energy those lawns save on your electric bill by cooling the exterior areas around your home.

B. Grass and mature trees cool the air and encourage rainfall. Rocked yards, parking lots, sidewalks, streets, stucco homes, etc. perform the opposite!

C. On an extremely hot day, grass can be 15-20 degrees cooler than exposed soil and as much as 40-60 degrees cooler than concrete or asphalt.

D. Acting like a gigantic sponge, lawns absorb all types of airborne pollutants, such as soot, dust and carbon dioxide, as well as noise. While your lawn is busily performing any of these functions, you may not have noticed, it is very quiet and has no moving parts.

E. Recent studies show healthy lawns absorb rainfall 6 times more effectively than a wheat field, 4 times more than a hay field and 50-100 times more than hard-packed dirt – being exceeded only by virgin forest. Lawns hold and filter the rain back to the aquifer, where everyone can use it again, and again, and again!

F. Remember, our planet has every drop of water that has ever been on earth. However, it is redeposited in different ways and areas. Many times it is lost forever, due to man’s ignorance of his environment, such as, banning green areas (grass) in favor of Xeriscape. (See E.)

G. A 50×50 foot healthy grass area will produce enough oxygen to meet the needs of a family of four every day. Most Xeriscape yards provide little to no oxygen.

H. Quality turf grass not only reduces runoff water, it also prevents erosion by water or wind which results in the loss of valuable topsoil. Unfortunately, most Xeriscape yards aren’t even TRUE Xeriscape, and have nothing more than rock and gravel, with sometimes small green plantings, which provides little or no runoff protection.

I. Homes, sports fields and parks, with healthy lawns, provide safer recreation areas where grass acts as a cushion to reduce shock and potential injury. In addition, children can’t or won’t play in rocks, tumbleweeds or sand – they prefer grass.

J. Aesthetically, there can be no argument that a beautiful lawn is immediately pleasing and relaxing in appearance. When comparing a grassed area to a rocked area, there is no question as to which is more pleasurable to the senses.

K. While some may scorn its needs, others find lawn maintenance an excellent opportunity to enjoy reasonable exercise and a break away from the tv, computer, or other household happenings.


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Winter Sod Care

Your lawn will need some minimal care throughout Winter, to ensure a healthy and happy Spring lawn, so don’t forget about it until then!

Here are some of our best Fall and Winter lawn care tips:

  • Aerate. Late Fall and early Winter are good times to aerate your lawn.  This allows air, water and nutrients directly to the root level (all roots need nutrients, water AND air), and opens areas of the soil, helping ward off compaction, which can be tough on roots.
  • Fertilize. Lawns become somewhat, but not fully dormant in the winter.  You should fertilize BEFORE this semi-dormancy stage.   This will allow the lawn to still receive much needed nutrients it can lack over winter, leading to a much healthier, happier lawn come Spring. You will also want to start fertilizing in early March. Make sure to read the full instructions, and application rates for Fall and Winter. We sell fertilizer specifically made for our climate…it’s the same kind we use at the farm!
  • Clean off debris and snow. grass-in-snowWe don’t get much snow in the Southwest, however, there can be patches of snow in the shade that if left for some time, with wet debris, can smother and kill the grass underneath. Sod still needs oxygen in Winter! If snow is left to pile on grass (not common in South and Central NM, but a possibility in Northern NM) keeping it wet through an extended time, it can turn lawns pink or gray with snow mold.  Spread out any large piles of snow to encourage melting.
  • Keep foot traffic to a minimum. There are a few times throughout Winter, that the ground may be frozen or close to it.  When we play and run on grass in these conditions, it can damage it. Keep rough foot traffic to a minimum in the cold Winter months.
  • Work out soil compaction. Too much foot traffic on wet Winter grass can compact the soil, which is not a good for turf roots that work hard in Winter.  Compaction can be helped by aerating.  So again, keep foot traffic to a minimum in Winter.
  • Reseed before the Winter sets in. Reseeding is a great thing to do in the Fall before the cold Winter temperatures. Attaining good seed germination is difficult for the common homeowner, and seed grades sold at big box stores, is not of the highest quality (ie. lower germination rates).  So if you really want to do some serious seeding work, local landscape contractors can “powerseed”, which distributes seed into machine-made knife-like slits to achieve optimum seed germination.  You can reseed in late Winter as well (February/March) but remember, when seeding it can take up to 18 months to have a full yard, and you may need to reseed a couple more times to get a full, lush lawn. We sell Grade 1 (the best germination rate) Scotts Premium Seed in all the same sod varieties we have.
  • Get rid of pests and weeds. Fall is the perfect time to treat for weeds, dandelions, bugs, and grubs. Herbicides, pesticides (organic is better) and weed killer are good options to apply before the Winter cold arrives.

If you really want to have a superb lawn in Spring, you must care for it throughout Winter too.  Please feel free to contact us if you have any other questions.


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Why Choose Sod?

LAWNS & OUR ENVIRONMENT

Turf grass is earth smart. Scientists throughout the world are increasingly documenting the significant role of turf, particularly in urban/suburban settings where the removal of turf and other vegetation has amplified problems such as the “urban heat effect.”

In the 1990 Farm Bill, the U.S. Congress noted:

Tree plantings and ground cover, such as low growing dense perennial turf grass sod in urban areas and communities, can aid in reducing carbon dioxide emissions, mitigating the heat island effect and reducing energy consumption, thus contributing to reduce global warming trends.

BENEFITS

According to the Professional Lawn Care Association of America, a thick, healthy lawn has several environmental benefits including:

OXYGEN

625 square feet of lawn provides enough oxygen for one person for an entire day.

TEMPERATURE

On a block of eight average houses, front lawns have the cooling effect of 70 tons of air conditioning.

POLLUTION

Turf absorbs gaseous pollutants such as carbon dioxide and sulfur dioxide, converting them to oxygen.

DUST AND DIRT

Turf traps an estimated 12 million tons of dust and dirt released annually into the atmosphere.

FIRE RETARDATION

A buffer zone of grass around buildings helps retard the spread of fire.

WATER QUALITY

Turf prevents soil erosion, filters contaminants from rainwater and reduces runoff.

VALUE, CURB APPEAL & PERSONAL ENJOYMENT

Not only is sod good for the environment, it will add value and improve the curb appeal of your property. The increased attention your property gets after a makeover will move a house quicker if you’re in the market to sell. Or, if you are not selling, the new look will make you feel good to just sit and enjoy it.


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Happy 4th of July!

Category : Knowledge , Ordering Info

We, at Stonegate Turfgrass Ranch, want to wish you
and yours a fun and safe 4th of July!

In observance of Independence Day, our holiday hours are as follows:

ALBUQUERQUE LOT:
Closed Monday, July 3rd and Tuesday, July 4th.

MORIARTY FARM:
Open Monday, July 3rd from 9:00 am-3:00 pm.
Closed Tuesday, July 4th.

Both locations will open again at 8:00 am on Wednesday, July 5th.


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kids on grass

Put Something Beautiful In Your Yard…Your Family!

Summer is here! Kids are out of school. Are they begging to play outside…or will they decide not to because they don’t have anything nice to play on?

If you have real grass for them to play on, the answer is yes! But if you have Xeriscape, imitation grass, or just plain dirt for a play surface, then expect to raise “couch potatoes” who want to stay inside and play video games for the entire summer.

It’s your choice. Put something beautiful in your yard! Your family…and give them REAL grass to play on. Grass is the safest natural play surface on earth!

Call us today to get started, so your kids will stay active over the summer!

ORDER TODAY!


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Considering Artificial Grass?

Before you invest your hard-earned money in artificial turf, here are a few reasons you might think twice about it!

1. It’s expensive!

About 10-30 times more than live turf grass, depending on the style of artificial turf you choose.

2. It’s extremely hot during the summer months and can easily be as hot as asphalt.

Your children or pets will not be able to play on it until it is cooled down. To do that, you will have to soak it with many gallons of cold water. WHAT? Isn’t that why you considered it in the first place? To “save on water”, but now you have to soak it WITH water just to “enjoy” using it? Now that doesn’t make much sense…does it?

3. It’s difficult to keep clean.

The easiest way requires large amounts of water to wash away the dirt. That water will run straight into the storm drains and NOT back into the aquifer, opposite the water you would use on live turf. Or you can choose to vacuum it, but since it’s such a huge investment, you’ll want to make sure you maintain it properly by having it professionally cleaned.

4. You trade one for another. Maybe you’ll save a little on your water bill, but not as much as you can save on your electric bill by having LIVE turf in areas surrounding your home or office.

The lawn area (approx. 1000 sq.ft. per home) in a block of eight average homes has the cooling effect of about 70 tons of refrigerated air-conditioning. One ton of refrigerated air-conditioning will cool approximately 400 sq.ft. of interior space. The average home requires about 3-4 ton of cooling capacity to perform its function. Artificial turf will not cool your homes exterior or help with your electric bill in any way.

5. Artificial turf isn’t environmentally friendly as you think.

REAL turf absorbs all types of airborne pollutants, such as soot, dust and carbon dioxide, as well as noise. Artificial turf does not.

 

IMPORTANT ARTIFICIAL TURF ARTICLES

 

Please read the articles below, prior to purchasing and installing artificial turf:

Fake grass has a drawback: It gets too hot, study says

The Las Vegas Sun

(Real) Turfgrass to replace artificial turf at Toronto’s BMO Field

Athletic Turf News

TFC (Toronto’s BMO Field) could be on (real) grass by start of next season
The Toronto Star

Artificial Turf: Does it Increase the Risk of Sports Injuries?
Hospital for Special Surgery, New York, NY

At City’s Synthetic Fields, High Lead Levels Fuel Debate
The New York Times

Synthetic Turf Playing Fields Present Unique Dangers
University of Missouri

Artificial Turf Cleaning Tips
Yep, you really DO have to clean it!

Reporter questions plan to irrigate synthetic fields
Athletic Turf News


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Shop and Compare Your Sod

Category : Knowledge , Turf Care

It seems we all shop and compare prices.  Milk, butter, oranges, gasoline, motor oil, etc. all share the same thing; there is little difference from one producer to another.

But, when it comes to sod, there are vast differences in quality; however, many folks don’t shop and compare. Even if the sod looks like it has been sitting around for a week, or longer, many will buy it because it’s just cheap and convenient to purchase! Will it even survive once you lay it down?

Much of the sod purchased from the big outlet stores is brought in from out of state, which many do not know. It takes about an hour to deliver our sod from our farm to our retail lot, in Albuquerque; not a full day or two that it might take from an out of state farm!  Our sod never sits around for more than a few hours; simply because we never harvest unless it is ordered and pre-sold. The big stores can’t, or won’t do that, because it takes too much labor to spend time selling low profit items such as sod.  But…we promise to take as much time as needed to explain and educate you, our very valued customers, on the value of a green, healthy lawn.

Thank you for choosing us, when selecting our sod for your next project!


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