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BANGKOK 20 April 2019 21:40
rexall

Clover to replace turf?

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With all due respect H508, lawns in the US mid west can not be compared to those here in Thailand, especially northeast Thailand.

 

In the US, you have the support of a billion dollar turf industry. Numerous cultivars to choose from turf ryegrasses, bermuda grasses, bent grasses, a range of fine fescues and even turf paspalum grasses. In addition, there is the support from huge range of selective herbicides to knock out this and that weed species, different fertilisers and of course state-of-the art lawn mowers. You are also in a temperate climate in which lawns are easier to establish than in the tropics. 

 

Here in the true tropics in Thailand we have none of this support. First of all we start with terrible soils, lacking in almost anything. Sand, stones, clays. Trying to get a lawn down is a huge challenge. Then there is no lawn grass seed easily available. Only two types of ready-to lay turfs to choose from; Zoysia (yaa nuan noi) and broadleaf carpet grass (yaa malaya). once these are laid then there is the short wet season of five months followed by the long seven month dry season.

 

SInbin's lawn above is a seasonal lawn made up of mostly native species especially Dactyloctenium aegyptium. Sinbin mows it weekly in the wet season and less frequently in the dry season. He does not water at all. It dies away and regrows when the rains come again. While not a beautiful lawn by US standards it is by local standards being short and green. And that is what counts. 

 

FruitPudding above inquired about cover grasses to suppress weeds and that do not grow tall and require low maintenance. Unfortunately we do not have seed of such species. Most are propagated vegetatively in Thailand. The best one around is bahia grass (Paspalum notatum). you may be able to dig up tillers at some of the Thai government livestock stations if you have contacts there. 

 

Finally, a lot of people think I should have good lawns seeing I am a grass specialist. Well I try (photos attached). However, my biggest challenge is not the weeds but one of my dogs. He is a Labrador-cross and digs to lie in cool soil. Hence all the netting you see laid down in parts. 

House March 2017_09.JPG

House March 2017_10.JPG

House March 2017_13.JPG

House March 2017_08.JPG

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1 minute ago, Michael Hare said:

With all due respect H508, lawns in the US mid west can not be compared to those here in Thailand, especially northeast Thailand.

 

Heck,  I was astounded at the difference between my lush Midwest bluegrass lawn and my scrubby Texas Bermuda lawn.  

 

Took 4x the effort in Texas, had to start from sprigs (no seeds), and it was always getting eaten by something or burning in the heat.  I can only imagine what it takes to grow a nice lawn in Thailand.  Being a BKK apartment dweller for work purposes, I doubt I'll ever have to find out.

 

 

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1 hour ago, H508 said:

I would just be too depressed to work and spend money on the lawn if that is what my effort gets me.

Beats sitting on my a*se . I'd rather spend my money and time working on my garden than sitting drinking with others farangs talking about whether '90 day reporting will ever get back up running'. Each to their own. So what do you intend to do H508 to stave off boredom once you upsticks and move to Thailand? 

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@rexall how did you get on?  I just purchased 10 kilos of dutch white clover seeds to plant on a bit of farm land where I have a few bees.  I could not find ANY information about growing this in Thailand and brought a couple of seed packets to test, but then got the 10kg on ebay for around $22 including shipping so thought I might as well give it a go.  The first lot of seeds germinated in potts but I could not wait for the sake of $20.  This does not need to look nice as in a lawn, just needs to produce a bit of clover honey cause I miss the stuff

Edited by vagabondkiwi

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I presume you live in northeast Thailand as you replied to a thread on the Isaan forum. All Dutch white clovers are temperate species. They will not grow and persist in the humid tropics. Too hot and too humid. The seeds may very well germinate and that will be all. I am afraid you wasted your $22. You should have tried to purchase a tropical clover such as Trifolium_semipilosum.

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On 10/6/2018 at 2:27 PM, Michael Hare said:

I presume you live in northeast Thailand

I do what would be a good grass seed available here for a lawn ?

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Lawn grass seed is very difficult to find in Thailand, and next to impossible in northeast Thailand. 

 

The seed has to be imported. Most lawn grass seed is bermuda grass imported from the USA. Selected outlets do stock this seed in Bangkok.

 

You can import the seed yourself from either the USA (bermuda grass) or Australia (Queensland blue couch or bermuda grass). 

 

 

 

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How much work is the bermuda grass to keep alive and going here ? I guess what im saying is it worth the trouble of doing it.

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3 hours ago, Notagain said:

How much work is the bermuda grass to keep alive and going here ? I guess what im saying is it worth the trouble of doing it.

You have to import the most tropical cultivar of the bermuda grasses. 

https://www.bermuda-attractions.com/bermuda_0000f0.htm

 

I personally wouldn't bother. You will have to import taxes and other charges. Just stick with the either of the two common turfs found in isaan at garden centres. Zoysia (Yaa nuuninoi) or Broadleaf carpet grass (Yaa Malay).

 

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