Section 12      Dry Meadow Seeding

12.1 General

The specifications of Section 12 shall apply to the seeding of native grasses, with or without native wildflowers (forbs), for the purpose of establishing permanent low-maintenance vegetation for upland habitat restoration. All labor, equipment, and materials required for the completion of Section 12 shall be furnished by the seeding contractor, unless specified otherwise.

12.2 Location

Dry meadows shall be seeded in open, sunny sites; they shall not be seeded in sites that receive less than 3/4 day of direct sun exposure, nor in sites that receive frequent foot or vehicular traffic, nor in sites that are prone to flood, nor in sites where the rapid establishment of vegetative soil erosion protection is of primary concern. Dry meadow seeding shall not be established in any site where soil or other conditions are generally unfavorable for permanent vegetation establishment or survival.

12.3 Soil Testing and Preparation

12.3a Soil Testing Requirements

Soil shall be tested by the University of Maryland Soil Testing Laboratory, or another accredited soil testing laboratory for phosphorus (P or P2O5), potassium (K or K2O), calcium (Ca), magnesium (Mg), sulfur (S), nitrate (N), soil acidity (pH), and soluble salts. Soil tests shall be completed and their analyses shall be received and interpreted before dry meadow areas are seeded. Soil samples of the upper 4.0 inches of the soil surface shall be used for all soil tests. See Section 12.5 for fertilizer application specifications.

12.3b Soil Phosphorus, Potassium, Calcium, Magnesium, and Sulfur

Soil shall be tested for phosphorus, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and sulfur. Fertility recommendations based on turfgrass requirements for these nutrients shall be obtained from the University of Maryland Soil Testing Laboratory, or another accredited soil testing laboratory, or the Maryland Cooperative Extension Service. Deficiencies of these nutrients shall be corrected in accordance with those recommendations with fertilizer and/or compost either before seeding operations are begun, or at the time of seeding.

12.3c Soil Nitrate

Soil shall be tested for soil nitrate. Fertility recommendations based on turfgrass requirements for nitrate shall be obtained from the University of Maryland Soil Testing Laboratory, or another accredited soil testing laboratory, or the Maryland Cooperative Extension Service, and soil nitrate levels shall be adjusted in accordance with those recommendations so that soil nitrate is in the moderate or medium level at the time of seeding. Sites with high or very high soil nitrate levels shall be considered unsuitable for dry meadow seedings until nitrate levels are dissipated.

12.3d Soil Acidity (pH)

Dry meadow seedings shall not be established in sites where the soil acidity (pH) is below pH 4.5 or above pH 8.0. Soil modifications may be made before seeding or at the time of seeding, as long as seeding establishment is not reduced by adverse soil conditions. If soil acidity is below pH 4.5, limestone shall be added to the soil in an amount according to the recommendations of the soil testing laboratory or the Maryland Cooperative Extension Service, or according to Table A, below, so that the final soil acidity is pH 4.5 to 6.5. If soil acidity is above pH 8.0, elemental sulfur shall be added to the soil in an amount according to the recommendations of the soil testing laboratory or the Maryland Cooperative Extension Service, or according to Table B, below, so that the final soil acidity is pH 6.5 to 8.0. At sites where the soil acidity is found to be below pH 4.0 or above pH 8.5, it is recommended that a Certified Professional Soil Scientist, a Certified Professional Agronomist, or other qualified professional, be consulted. See Section 4.3 and Section 12.5c for limestone application specifications.

 

Table A
Pounds of Limestone to Add per 1000 ft2
To Raise Soil pH to 6.5

Soil Texture Class

Original pH  Sand  Loam Clay
4.8 85 140 200
5.0 75  125 175
5.2 65 110 150
5.4 55 95 125
5.6 45 80 100
5.8 35 65 80
6.0 25 50 60
6.2 15 35 40
6.4 5 15 20


Note: Table A shall be used only for limestone which meets the specifications Section 4.3

 

Table B
Pounds of Elemental Sulfur to Add per 1000 ft2
To Reduce Soil pH to 6.5

Soil Texture

Original pH Sandy Soil  Clay Soil
7.5 10-15 20-25
8.0 25-35 35-50
8.5 35-50 40-50


Note: Table B shall be used only for elemental sulfur which meets the specifications of Section 4.4

  

12.3e Soil Soluble Salts

Soil shall be tested for soluble salts concentration. Soluble salts in soils intended for dry meadow seeding shall not exceed 700 parts per million (ppm) or 5.0 ms/cm at the time of seeding. Modifications to reduce soil soluble salts concentrations shall be made according to the recommendations of the soil testing laboratory, or of the Maryland Cooperative Extension Service, or by using Table C, below, as follows: When subsoil soluble salts exceed 700 ppm or 5.0 ms/cm, add the amount of gypsum recommended in Table C to reduce soluble salts concentrations below 700 ppm or 5.0 ms/cm. At sites where salts concentrations exceed 1800 ppm or 7.0 ms/cm, it is recommended that a Certified Professional Soil Scientist, a Certified Professional Agronomist, or other qualified professional be consulted.

 

 

Table C
Pounds of Gypsum to Add per 1000 ft2
To Reduce Soluble Salts to Recommended Levels

Original Salts Level

 Pounds Gypsum

millisiemens  parts per million (ppm)  per 1000 ft2
8 2500 320
7 1800 230
6 1250 160
5 700 80
4.5

550

40


Note: Table C shall only be used for finely ground gypsum which meets the Specifications of Section 4.5

 

12.4 Site and Soil Preparation

12.4a Vegetation Removal

.1. Recommendations. Because dry meadow vegetation is often slow to establish, and because many weed species are difficult or impossible to selectively remove from a permanent dry meadow, it is recommended to destroy (i.e., kill) as much of the pre-existing vegetation as possible before seeding. Unless desirable vegetation is present or there are other compelling reasons to conserve the pre-existing vegetation, as much of the pre-existing vegetation as possible should be destroyed as standard practice. Therefore, in the absence of any other agreement between the seeding contractor and other affected parties, the seeding contractor shall destroy over 99% of the pre-existing vegetation groundcover at the seeding site, including saplings, shrubs, weeds, grasses, or other vegetation, and including the viable roots and rhizomes of these plants.

.2. Guarantee. When the procedures specified in Section 12.4a.3. are performed, so that over 99% of the pre-existing vegetation is destroyed prior to seeding, then the seeding contractor may guarantee the success of the seeding. However, if the seeding contractor is contractually precluded from destroying over 99% of the pre-existing vegetation groundcover, then the seeding contractor shall not guarantee the success of the seeding.

.3. Procedures. Unless specified otherwise, the seeding contractor shall use one or some combination of the methods below to destroy over 99% of the pre-existing vegetation at the meadow seeding site:

Tillage One or two tillage operations (i.e., rototilling, disking, etc.) to an average depth of 3.0 to 5.0 inches. For better performance, one or two weeks should be allowed to elapse between tillage operations, so that weed seeds and perennial plant parts may have time to germinate or regrow, and so be destroyed by the second tilling.

Herbicide One or two applications at full label rates of a non-selective herbicide which does not leave an active soil residual, such as glyphosate (e.g., Round-upTM) or glufosinate-ammonium (e.g., FinaleTM). For better performance, one or two weeks should be allowed to elapse between spraying operations, so that weed seeds and perennial plant parts may have time to germinate or regrow, and so be destroyed by the second spraying.

12.4b Soil Preparation

.1. Prep for broadcast seeding. If the site will be seeded by broadcast seeding methods (Section 12.7c), the soil shall be loosened with rototillers, disk harrows, or other soil preparation equipment which shall leave the soil with an irregular open surface. Bulldozers which are used to loosen the soil surface shall leave the surface with an open irregular surface, and with track ridges which run parallel to the slope. In sites where slopes with steepness over 4:1 are present (erodible slopes), the minimum tillage required to disturb the soil surface and reduce the surface cover of dead vegetation is recommended. Vegetation may have been previously destroyed by spraying with glyphosate or glufosinate-ammonium, according to the specifications of Section 12.3. However, tillage performed under this section may be sufficient to destroy weeds and prepare soil in a single operation (see Section 12.4a.3, above). All rocks and other debris larger than 3.0 inches in diameter shall be removed from the soil surface. The site shall be leveled so that no irregularities greater than 2.0 inches above or below grade per linear foot are present. The soil at the time of seeding shall be firm, and the surface shall be loose and open, so that dry meadow seeds may readily fall into soil spaces.

.2. Prep for drill seeding. If the site will be seeded by drill seeding methods with a suitable native grass and forb drill seeder (Section 12.7d), the soil may be prepared as described in Section 12.4b.1, above, or the site may be seeded by drilling the seed directly into the stubble of the previously killed vegetation. However, if dead vegetation at the soil surface is excessive, i.e., a matte of dead vegetation greater that 1.5 inches in thickness is present, the site shall be tilled to a suitable depth, so that most of the vegetation is incorporated into the soil. In sites where slopes with steepness over 4:1 are present (erodible slopes), the minimum tillage required to reduce the surface cover of dead vegetation is recommended. In sites where no tillage shall be performed, it is assumed that vegetation will have been previously destroyed by spraying with glyphosate or glufosinate-ammonium, according to the specifications of Section 11.4a. However, if weed populations are very low, drill seeding without prior tillage or spraying may be possible. If tillage prior to drill seeding is performed, then all rocks and other debris larger than 3.0 inches in diameter shall be removed from the soil surface. The site shall be leveled so that no irregularities greater than 2.0 inches above or below grade per linear foot are present.

12.5 Fertilizer and Limestone

12.5a General

When soil tests have been performed, as specified in Section 12.3a-e, dry meadow seeding sites shall receive fertilizer at rates in accordance with recommendations of the University of Maryland Soil Testing Laboratory, or another soil testing laboratory which performed the tests, or of the Maryland Cooperative Extension Service, or according to Section 12.3d Table A or Table B, as appropriate.

12.5b Starter Fertilizer

Starter fertilizer (i.e., a fertilizer applied in the absence of soil tests and without regard to nutrient requirements demonstrated by soil testing) shall not be applied to dry meadow seeding sites.

12.5c Application of Fertilizer and Limestone

Fertilizer may be applied up to ten (10) days before seeding, or at the time of seeding, or up to five (5) days after seeding operations are completed. Limestone and elemental sulfur shall be applied to dry meadow seeding sites at rates according to soil tests and recommendations of the soil testing laboratory, or according to Table A and Table B in Section 12.3d. Applications of limestone which exceed 50 lbs. per 1000 ft2 (2,200 lbs. per acre) shall be incorporated into the soil before seeding operations are begun, as specified in Section 12.3d and Section 4.3. Limestone applications which are less than 50 lbs. per 1000 ft2 may be applied at any time before seeding, or at the time of seeding, or up to five (5) days after the completion of seeding operations. Sulfur applications shall be incorporated into the soil before seeding operations are begun, as specified in Section 12.3d and Section 4.4.

12.6 Seeding Dates, Species, and Seed Mixtures

12.6a Dry Meadow Seeding Dates

Dry meadow seedings shall be sown during the following times, based upon USDA Plant Hardiness Zones and the region of Maryland.

Southern Maryland & Eastern Shore USDA Zone 7a and 7b 2/15 - 4/15 and 9/15 - 11/15
Central Maryland USDA Zone 6b 3/1 - 4/30 and 9/1 - 11/1
Western Maryland USDA Zone 6a and 5b 3/15 - 5/1 and 8/15 - 10/15

 

12.6b Species for Dry Meadow Seeding and Seed Mixes

.1. Suitable species. The species and seeding rates shown in Table G-1: Native Warm Season Grasses; Table G-2: Native Cool Season Grasses; and Table G-3: Native Forbs are suitable for dry meadow seeding sites. Other native species may be included in the dry meadow seed mix, but no native species which is not listed in Table G-1, Table G-2, or Table G-3 shall be seeded at an individual seeding rate higher than 0.25 pounds pure live seed (PLS) per acre.

.2. Excluded species. No non-native, introduced, or exotic species shall be included in the seed mix for dry meadow seeding sites. Examples of excluded species are included in, but not limited to, those included in Table H: Excluded Species. Table H shows some of the more common species that shall not be included in dry meadow seed mixes.

.3. Seed mix. The seed mix for dry meadow seeding sites shall contain a mix of species from Table G-1 and Table G-2, so that a minimum of two (2) Key Species from Table G-1 (underlined) are combined with a minimum of one (1) Key Species from Table G-2 (underlined). A minimum of three (3) additional species from Table G-1 and/or Table G-2 shall also be included in the seed mix, and it is recommended that as many species from Table G-1 and Table G-2 as are appropriate to the seeding site be included in the seed mix. The inclusion of species in Table G-3 is optional, but in most cases the inclusion of at least four (4) forb species is appropriate and beneficial to a dry meadow seeding site (Key Species of forbs are underlined).

.4. Seeding rates. It is recommended that all species included in Table G-1, Table G-2, and Table G-3 be seeded at the rates shown, below. However, if at least 80% of the species in the seed mix are sown within the recommended range shown, and no species are included at a rate above the dont exceed limit, the seed mix shall be considered suitable for dry meadow seeding. Other native species which are not shown in Table G-1, Table G-2, or Table G-3 may be included in the seed mix, but the total weight of such species may not account for more than 10% of the seed mix by weight, and no species not shown in Table G-1, G-2, or G-3 may be seeded at a rate higher than 0.25 pounds PLS per acre.

 

Table G-1
Native Warm Season Grasses Suitable for Dry Meadow Seeding

All Rates in Pure Live Seed, Pounds per Acre

Common Name Range Donít Exceed Comments
Big Bluestem 0.50 - 1.50 3.00 Prefers moist sites. Avoid dry, low fertility sites.
Bluejoint 1.00 - 2.00 3.00 Prefers moist to wet soils. Tall.
Broomsedge 0.50 - 1.50 2.00 Adaptible. Does well on dry, low fertility sites. Avoid wet sites.
Buffalograss 0.50 - 1.00 2.00 Prefers well drained sites. Avoid clay soils.
Deertongue 0.25 - 0.75 1.25 Good for most sites. Tolerates partial shade and moist sites.
Eastern Gamagrass 1.00 - 3.00 4.00 Prefers moist to wet sites.
Florida Paspalum 1.00 - 2.00 3.00 Good for most sites. Tolerates dry sites.
Indiangrass 0.50 - 1.00 2.00 Good for most sites.
Little Bluestem 0.50 - 1.50 2.00 Good for most sites. Avoid wet sites, clay soil.
Side-oats Grama 1.00 - 2.00 4.00 Prefers dry sites, limestone soils, in full sun.
Switchgrass 0.50 - 1.00 2.00 Widely adapted. Tolerates dry and moist sites.

  

Table G-2
Native Cool Season Grasses Suitable for Dry Meadow Seeding

All Rates in Pure Live Seed,Pounds per Acre

Common Name Range Donít Exceed Comments
Bottlebrush   0.50 - 1.00 2.00 Widely adapted, but prefers moist, partially shaded sites.
Canada Wildrye 1.00 - 2.00 3.00  Widely adapted, but prefers moist sites.
Junegrass 0.25 - 0.75 1.50 Prefers dry sites, partial shade.
Purpletop 0.50 - 2.00 3.00 Widely adapted.
Sea Oats 0.50 - 1.00 2.00 Prefers moist, partially shaded sites.
Virginia Wildrye 1.00 - 2.00 3.00 Widely adapted, but prefers moist, partially shaded sites.

    

 

Table G-3
Native Forbs / Native Wildflowers Suitable for Dry Meadow Seeding
All Rates in Pure Live Seed, Pounds per Acre

 

Common Name Range Donít Exceed Comments
Beardtongue 0.10 - 0.20 0.30 White. Widely adapted, prefers full sun.
Black-eyed Susan 0.20 - 0.40 0.80 Yellow. Widely adapted, prefers well drained sunny sites.
Blue False Indigo 0.10 - 0.30 0.60 Blue. Prefers moist sites, tolerates some shade.
Butterfly Weed 0.20 - 0.40 0.80 Orange. Prefers well-drained sites in full sun.
Crooked-stem aster 0.10 - 0.20 0.40 Pale blue flowers. Prefers moist sites.
Daisy Fleabane 0.10 - 0.20 0.40 White. Adaptable. Short-lived, may be weedy.
Flat-topped Aster 0.10 - 0.20 0.40 White. Prefers moist sites in full sun.
Flowering Spurge 0.10 - 0.20 0.40 White. Prefers well-drained sites in full sun.
Gayfeather 0.20 - 0.40 0.80 Purple. Prefers moist sites, tolerates some shade.
Gray-headed Conefl. 0.20 - 0.40 0.80 Yellow. Widely adapted, prefers full sun.
Heath Aster 0.05 - 0.10 0.20 White. Widely adapted. Can be weedy.
Lanceleaf Coreopsis 0.50 - 1.50 3.00 Yellow. Prefers moist sites, tolerates some shade.
New England Aster 0.20 - 0.40 0.80 Purple. Widely adapted, prefers moist sites.
New York Aster 0.20 - 0.40 0.80 Purple. Widely adapted, prefers moist sites.
Ox-eye Sunflower  0.50 - 1.00 2.00 Yellow. Prefers moist sites, tolerates some shade
Partridge Pea 0.20 - 0.50 1.00 Yellow. Prefers well-drained sites in full sun.
Perennial Gaillardia 0.50 - 1.00 2.00 Red. Prefers well-drained sites in full sun.
Prairie Coneflower 0.50 - 1.00 2.00 Yellow. Widely adapted, prefers well drained sunny sites.
Purple Coneflower 0.50 - 1.00 2.00 Purple. Widely adapted, prefers moist sites, tolerates shade.
Round-headed Bush-clov.  0.05 - 0.10 0.30 Cream. Prefers well-drained sites in full sun.
Rattlesnake-masters 0.20 - 0.40 0.80 White. Prefers full sun, fertile sites.
Showy Tick-trefoil 0.50 - 1.00 2.00 Pink. Prefers well-drained sites in full sun.
Stiff Goldenrod 0.10 - 0.20 0.40 Yellow. Widely adapted.
Sweet Goldenrod 0.10 - 0.20 0.40 Yellow Widely adapted.
Threadleaf Coreopsis 0.20 - 0.40 0.80 Yellow. Prefers well-drained sites in partial shade.
Virginia Mt. Mint 0.10 - 0.30 0.60 White. Widely adapted. Prefers full sun.
Wild Indigo 0.10 - 0.30 0.60 Yellow. Prefers well drained sites in full sun.

 

Table H-1

Excluded Grass Species

Some Species Which are Not Suitable for Dry Meadow Seeding

(All Non-Native, Introduced, or Exotic Species areExcluded Species)

Kentucky Bluegrass Annual Ryegrass Phragmites Miscanthus spp
Orchardgrass Perennial Ryegrass Wheat Pampas grass
Timothy Tall Fescue Barley
Smooth Bromegrass Creeping Red Fescue Oats
Alkalaigrass Sheep Fescue Foxtail Millet
Weeping Lovegrass Hard Fescue Japanese Millet
Creeping Bentgrass Redtop

 

Table H-2

Excluded Broadleaf Species

Some Species Which are Not Suitable for Dry Meadow Seeding

(All Non-Native, Introduced, or Exotic Species are Excluded Species)

Yarrow Rocket Larkspur Cornflower Crown Vetch
Shasta Daisy Lemon Mint Cosmos Birdsfoot Trefoil
Ox-eye Daisy Drummond Phlox Calendula Sericia Lespedeza
Chicory Pink Catchfly Dames Rocket Korean Lespedeza
Sweet William Queen Annes Lace Siberian Wallflower White Clover
Blue Flax Daylilly Corn Poppy Red Clover
Scarlet Flax Daffodil California Poppy Sweet Clover
Flatpea

 

12.7 Seeding Methods

12.7a General

The species used in dry meadow seedings are generally small and do not benefit from deep planting. The use of a minimal planting depth of 0.10 - 0.25 inches in combination with a firm seedbed is ideal.

12.7b Choice of Seeding Methods

Seed for dry meadow seedings shall be applied with broadcast seeders (Section 12.7c), or with specialized seed drills only. Hydraulic seeders shall not be used for dry meadow seedings.

12.7c Broadcast Seeding

.1. Definition and seeding methods. Broadcast seeding involves the use of a properly calibrated reciprocating spreader (e.g., ViconTM), or a properly calibrated rotary spreader (e.g., ScottsTM model R-8), or similar equipment which is equipped with an agitator to ensure continuous mixing. All of the grass and forb seed intended for the dry meadow seeding site shall be combined in a barrel or other suitable container with one or more coarse, low density, non-toxic bulking agents such as calcined clay (Kitty LitterTM, or similar product), fine cocoa shell mulch, coarse vermiculite, or coarse perlite, and thoroughly mixed at the time of seeding. Thorough mixing and the use of one or more bulking agents is required to ensure continuous seed flow through the spreader, and to improve seed distribution by preventing seed mix segregation.

.2. Seed incorporation and soil rolling. After seeding, the seed shall be raked or dragged into the soil surface to an average depth of 0.10 to 0.25 inch. When the soil is in a loose or fluffy condition, the seedbed shall be rolled with a weighted roller, so that the grass and forb seed is firmly pressed into the soil.

12.7d Drill Seeding

.1. Definition and seeding methods. Drill seeding involves the use of a drill seeder that is manufactured specifically for fluffy grass and forb seed. Suitable seeders typically include three separate seed hoppers with positive-feed mechanisms, and include TruaxTM, TyeTM, and J. Thom WildseederTM, among others. The seed of each species to be seeded shall be obtained unmixed, and shall be sorted by size as directed by the manufacturer of the seeding equipment. All instructions provided by the manufacturer of the seeding equipment shall be strictly observed and followed by the contractor.

.2. Seed incorporation and soil rolling. Most suitable seeders include soil openers to ensure a seeding depth of 0.10 to 0.50 inches as well as rollers to ensure a firm seedbed. However, if the seeding equipment is not equipped with a heavy roller, so that the soil is left in a loose or fluffy condition after seeding, the seedbed shall be rolled with a weighted roller in a separate operation, so that the grass and forb seed is firmly pressed into the soil.

12.8 Seed Mulches

12.8a General

When mulch is specified for dry meadow seedings, the use of Class AA straw is recommended, and Class A straw is acceptable. Fiber mulch products applied with a hydraulic seeded may be used in conjunction with straw. Erosion control blankets are generally not recommended.

12.8b Straw, Fiber Mulch, and Erosion Control Blankets

Seed mulches for dry meadow seedings shall consist of straw, or straw + tackifier, or straw + wood cellulose fiber, or straw + wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber, or erosion control blankets. The composition of straw used as a dry meadow seed mulch shall conform to Section 12.8c, and its use shall conform to the specifications of Section 12.9a. The composition and use of mulch products and accessories shall conform to the specifications of Section 7.2a-c and Section 7.3a-b, and their use in conjunction with straw shall conform to the specifications of Section 12.9c-d. Erosion control blankets that conform to the definitions of Section 7.2d and which are applied according to the specifications of Section 7.4b are not recommended, but may be applied over dry meadow seedings which are composed entirely of grass species. Erosion control blankets shall not be used for dry meadow seedings which contain forb (native wildflower species).

12.8c Straw Definition

.1. Use of straw. The use of clean straw with a low content of viable cereal grains and viable weed seed is important. Only Class AA and Class A straw shall be used as a seed mulch for dry meadow seedings. Neither Class B straw, nor Class C straw, nor hay shall be used as a mulch for dry meadow seeding. See Section 7.2e-f for more information about straw and hay.

.2. Classes of straw.

Class AA Straw is the recommended straw mulch for dry meadow seeding sites. Class AA straw shall be specially grown for use as a dry meadow seeding mulch, and shall be composed entirely of the air-dried stems and leaves of native grasses such as little bluestem, broomsedge, and other species which are compatible with dry meadow seeding sites. Class AA straw may contain any amount of the viable seed of the native grass species from which it is derived.

Class A Straw may be used as a mulch for dry meadow seeding sites. Class A Straw shall consist entirely of the straw of wheat, barley, oats, or cereal rye which has been specially grown for use as a seed mulch, and which is guaranteed by the producer of the straw to contain a maximum of 1.0 ounce of viable wheat, barley, oats, or cereal rye seed per standard small bale of straw (approx. 40 lbs. of straw).

.3. Physical condition. Both Class AA or Class A straw shall be bright in color, and shall not be wet, musty, moldy, caked, decayed, or dusty. Straw should be easily loosened when removed from the bale, and able to be uniformly spread by hand or with the use of a straw blower.

.4. Weed content. Both Class AA and Class A straw used as mulch in dry meadow seeding sites shall be free of the seeds, rhizomes, or other viable parts of the following weeds:

Balloonvine Canada Thistle Johnsongrass & hybrids Serrated Tussock
Bermudagrass Curly Thistle Musk Thistle Sicklepod
Bindweed Dodder Phragmites Spurred Anoda
Corn cockle Giant Foxtail Plumeless Thistle Wild Garlic
Cocklebur Horse Nettle Quackgrass Wild Onion

12.9 Mulching with Straw After Seeding

12.9a General methods

On level or gently rolling sites the use of straw is optional. Where soil erosion may be expected, straw shall be blown or otherwise applied uniformly over the surface of the seeded area at a rate of 1.0 to 2.0 tons per acre. The straw shall cover a minimum of 80% of the soil surface in a layer from 0.5 to 2.5 inches thick; up to 10% of the area may be covered with straw over 2.5 inches thick; up to 10% of the area may be covered with straw less than 0.5 inches thick. Where slopes with steepness over 4:1 are present (erodible slopes), straw at the rate of 2.0 tons per acre shall be applied and secured from wind and/or water erosion by one of the methods described below, and the seeding rate shall be increased as specified.

12.9b Straw Anchoring with Crimper

Straw shall be secured with a mulch anchoring tool, such as a straw-crimper, by pressing the straw to a minimum average depth of 2.0 inches below the soil surface.

12.9c Straw Anchoring with Tackifier and/or Liquid Mulch Binder

Straw shall be secured with tackifier or liquid mulch binder when the tackifier or liquid mulch binder is applied over the straw in a separate operation with hydraulic seeding equipment at the minimum rate recommended by the manufacturer, so that a minimum of 80% of the straw is covered by the tackifier or liquid mulch binder.

12.9d Straw Anchoring with Wood Cellulose Fiber or Wood fiber+ Wood Cellulose Fiber Mulch

Straw shall be secured with wood cellulose fiber or wood fiber + wood cellulose fiber hydraulic mulch when the mulch is applied in a separate operation over the straw with hydraulic seeding equipment at the rate of 150 lbs./acre, so that a minimum of 80% of the straw is covered by the hydraulic mulch. This method is not recommended when the dry meadow seed mix contains native wildflowers (forbs). However; if this method is used, the seeding rate of each forb species included in the seed mix shall be increased to 1.5 times (1.5x) the recommended seeding rate.

12.10 Irrigation After Seeding

Dry meadows shall be seeded when a minimum of 1/4 inch of natural rainfall is expected or when a minimum of 1/4 inch of irrigation will be received within 10 days after seeding. If sufficient natural rainfall is not received within 10 days, the new seeding shall be irrigated with a minimum of 1/4 inch of water, or so that water penetrates the soil to a uniform minimum depth of 4.0 inches.

12.11 Site Protection, Damage Repair, and Reseeding

12.11a Site Protection

It shall be the responsibility of the seeding contractor to install signs, flagging, etc. at the perimeter of all dry meadow seeding sites immediately after their completion, which shall serve to notify foot and vehicular traffic that a sensitive area may be damaged by their entry. The seeding contractor shall not be financially or otherwise held liable to repair a dry meadow seeding site that is damaged by the entrance of such traffic when the dry meadow seeding site has been appropriately designated with signs, flagging, etc. its perimeter (see Disclaimer, Section 12.14).

12.11b Repairs to Damaged Areas

.1. General. It shall be the responsibility of the seeding contractor to apply effective dry meadow seeding and erosion control mulch materials, and to ensure that such materials are secured to the soil so that they are not blown, washed, or otherwise removed from the dry meadow seeding site, and so that nearby streams and other areas shall be protected from soil, fertilizer, compost, and the incursion of unwanted grass seed.

.2. Repairs to dry meadow seeding sites. In the event of heavy rain, wind, or other natural event that causes damage to the dry meadow seeding site which is of a kind or type that may have been anticipated or prevented by the seeding contractor, such as through the use of mulch, staples, tackifier, etc., then including regrading, reseeding, and remulching, so that the dry meadow seeding site is restored to a condition acceptable according to the specifications of Section 12.

.3. Repairs to nearby areas. In the event of heavy rain, etc. that causes damage to the dry meadow seeding site, as described in Section 12.11b.2., above, and which also causes damage to nearby areas, as may be evidenced by soil deposition, straw deposition, etc. on the surfaces of the nearby areas, then the seeding contractor shall be obliged to make repairs to the damaged nearby areas, so that the nearby areas shall be restored to a condition substantially similar to their condition before the damaging event.

.4. Special limitations. The seeding contractor shall not be obliged, financially or otherwise, to regrade, reseed, remulch, or make any repairs to the dry meadow seeding site, or to any nearby areas, when there is evidence that the failure of the dry meadow seeding was substantially due to water, soil, or other materials which passed into the dry meadow seeding site from an area which was not stabilized or under the control or supervision of the seeding contractor. Examples of situations which shall void the responsibility of the seeding contractor to repair the dry meadow seeding site and nearby areas shall include the failure of responsible parties to provide effective groundcover, spillways, drainage diversions, water settlements, silt fence, etc. for areas which drain into the dry meadow seeding site, which would have prevented significant damage to the dry meadow seeding site and nearby areas.

12.12 Clean Up

Grading stakes, stones, trash, and other debris which may detract from the appearance or hinder maintenance of the dry meadow seeding site shall be removed from the site when seeding operations are completed. Soil, straw, hay, hydraulic fiber mulch, fertilizer, compost, limestone, elemental sulfur, gypsum, and other debris shall be removed from paved areas soon as possible after spreading and seeding operations are completed. Clean up operations shall be completed before acceptance is given.

12.13 Acceptance

12.13a Acceptance of Materials

The seeding contractor shall inform all affected parties of the composition of the seed mixes, seed blends, fertilizer, compost, limestone, elemental sulfur, gypsum, and seed mulch materials which are intended for application at the dry meadow seeding site before any of these materials are applied at the site; acknowledgment of acceptance of these materials shall be given by the owner, general contractor, landscape architect, or other person(s) authorized to make such a decision before spreading or seeding operations are begun. Labels and other material identification pertaining to the materials which are applied shall be retained by the seeding contractor for a minimum of 90 days after the completion of spreading and seeding operations.

12.13b Acceptance of Performance

Acknowledgment of acceptable performance shall be given by the owner, general contractor, landscape architect, or other person(s) authorized to inspect the dry meadow seeding site upon the satisfactory completion of each Subsection of Section 12. The dry meadow seeding site shall be inspected within 24 hours of the completion of each Subsection, as indicated by the seeding contractor, unless specified otherwise. The seeding contractor shall give notification when all Subsections of Section 12 have been completed; final acceptance and payment shall be made within 24 hours of such notification, or within the time period specified in the contract.

12.14 Disclaimer

12.14a Damage

The seeding contractor shall not be financially or otherwise held liable to repair damages incurred to the dry meadow seeding site as a result of materials not applied under the supervision of the seeding contractor, nor by vandalism, nor by acts of God. The seeding contractor shall not be financially or otherwise held liable to reseed, remulch, repair or otherwise amend the seeding site as a result of the use of topsoil, fertilizer, soil amendments, seed, seed mulch or other products which are labeled in error or which are otherwise not in accordance with the label or description provided with them by the manufacturer or distributor of the products, when they are applied by the seeding contractor in good faith, in accordance with their label or description.

12.14b Hazards

It shall be recognized that the dry meadow seeding site is a construction zone not under the ownership or legal control of the seeding contractor, and as such may present hazards to persons or property which enter the site. The seeding contractor specifically disclaims any and all responsibility for the safety and security of persons or property which may enter the dry meadow seeding site before the seeding contractor has begun work or when work is underway or at any time after work has been completed, and without regard to whether such entry is legal or otherwise. The seeding contractor shall assume no responsibility for personal injury or property damage, nor be subject to any claims of negligence, when the seeding contractor has performed work according to the specifications of MSA-GS-99, as mutually agreed, or has applied products or materials according to the recommendations of their manufacturer or distributor.

12.15 Guarantee

12.15a General Guarantee

The seeding contractor shall guarantee that all seed mixtures, seed mulches, fertilizer, compost limestone, elemental sulfur, gypsum, and application methods used at the seeding site shall be selected and used under the supervision of the seeding contractor according to the specifications of Section 4 and Section 12, unless specified otherwise, and that those materials and methods shall be appropriate for the site and the intended use of the site.

12.15b Term and Limitations of Guarantee

Although a minimum of 10% living dry meadow groundcover is often established within 3 months after seeding, the seeding contractor shall not guarantee the establishment of any percentage of living groundcover at the seeding site within any timeframe, except as may be contractually agreed. When seeding operations are completed outside the times specified in Section 12.6a, because of contractual obligations or because of delays not caused by the seeding contractor, the seeding contractor shall not guarantee the success of the seeding. When the seeding contractor is contractually precluded from eliminating over 99% of the pre-existing vegetation groundcover prior to seeding, as described in Section 12.4a, the seeding contractor shall not guarantee the success of the seeding. The seeding contractor shall guarantee that the dry meadow seeding shall resist significant damage from soil erosion for a period of two (2) months after seeding is completed.

12.15c Special Guarantees

.1. Erosion Control. The seeding contractor shall guarantee that appropriate efforts shall be taken to control soil erosion and the loss of seed and mulch materials which are applied by the seeding contractor according to the specifications of Section 12. The seeding contractor shall endeavor to alert parties responsible for the control of water and/or soil erosion outside the dry meadow seeding site which may adversely affect the success of the seeding; however, the seeding contractor shall not be obliged to identify, or report upon, or render any inadequacies fit to perform any particular purpose.

.2. Species Selection. The seeding contractor shall guarantee that appropriate efforts shall be taken to ensure that only native species of grasses and forbs are selected for seeding at the meadow site, and that all species selected for use shall be seeded in a manner appropriate for the species and the intended use of the site, subject to the limitations of Section 12.14a.

12.16 Payment

The seeding contractor shall give notification upon the completion of Section 12; the dry meadow seeding site shall be inspected within 24 hours of such notification, and payment shall be made at that time, or as specified in the contract. When payment is not received within the specified time period, the seeding contractor may void any guarantees related to Section 12, and may seek appropriate legal remedies.