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Author: Subject: chemical lawnmower
sodium_stearate
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[*] posted on 26-4-2011 at 21:08
chemical lawnmower


I have considered this possibility for many years.
Might there be some compound that could be sprayed on to
grass not to kill it, but simply to slow down the growth?

Here in Florida, USA, during the winter months there is no snow
but grass essentially stops growing. There's no need to mow
grass between about November and April.

I have always suspected that there may be some way to
chemically affect the grass to put it into this dormant mode.

Sure would be great to have that stuff to put on the grass
during the summer to slow it down to where only a few mowings per season would be required.

Any thoughts?










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bbartlog
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[*] posted on 27-4-2011 at 04:16


Maybe abscisic acid? I don't know whether it regulates winter dormancy in grass, but it does in some plants. But you're talking about a compound that seems to be available (pure) only in research quantities, not an abundant article of commerce.
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White Yeti
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[*] posted on 29-7-2011 at 13:19


This is just a shot in the dark, but perhaps acidifying the soil so that the growing conditions become less ideal? As bbartlog said, you will probably need tons of plant hormones for an entire lawn, it will become expensive.
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Morgan
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[*] posted on 30-7-2011 at 10:31


The grass looks kind of drab in winter though. It's nice not having to mow as you say. I live in Florida too and have a somewhat patchy backyard this year because I was too lazy to water and some weed-like plants are doing well.
Strangely a few entries I really don't mind. One is a very fat bladed crab grass or something and another an almost moss looking soft branching plant with delicate tiny white flowers smaller than a BB. Lastly some sort of succulent is taking hold too with pretty little red flowers. I think I have seen it growing more so on the beach sand dunes, where you wonder how anything could grow. So now I am doing an experiment and mowing around these guys.
Here is this "weed" or moss looking stuff. I should say it's getting kind of tall though almost 4 inches high.
In some ways I think it would be better to not have a monocultured yard.

DSC_0015.JPG - 158kB

DSC_0017.JPG - 171kB


[Edited on 30-7-2011 by Morgan]
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unionised
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[*] posted on 31-7-2011 at 04:49


"Sure would be great to have that stuff to put on the grass
during the summer to slow it down "

Try snow.
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Dr.Bob
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[*] posted on 3-8-2011 at 13:26


Try zoysia grass. A friend put plugs of it in his yard, and it grows low and slow. He had fescue in it, but the zoysia slowly grew into it and took over, so that after several years it was mostly zoysia. It looks great in the summer, but in NC it turns brownish during frosts. That would not be much of a problem in Florida. If I lived there I would try it. You can get plugs or sod pieces, which you can cut into your own plugs and plant easily. A large cork borer or bulb hole maker would make nice plugs from the sod and also be able to remove holes from the lawn to plant them in.

Bob
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sodium_stearate
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[*] posted on 25-11-2012 at 10:53
hydrozine


I was reading that hydrozine (as in rocket fuel)
was used at one time in large quantities
to slow down the growth of grass in public
places such as parks.

Heh. Heh. No small wonder why such compounds are not sold to consumers.

Heck because if such things were made available and were made safe to use, then the whole lawn-care industry would slow way way down.




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eesakiwi
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[*] posted on 25-11-2012 at 22:01


Alcohol.

It'l come up half cut...

Sorry, it was a joke I heard when I was a kid.
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sparkgap
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[*] posted on 28-11-2012 at 03:14


Quote: Originally posted by sodium_stearate  
I was reading that hydrozine (as in rocket fuel)
was used at one time in large quantities
to slow down the growth of grass in public
places such as parks.


Do you have a reference for this? Now, I have not looked at this topic in quite a while, but I do remember that hydrazine derivatives are what's being used as plant growth regulators, as opposed to hydrazine proper. The two most popular hydrazides that I remember are maleic hydrazide and daminozide (the infamous Alar). Due to their propensity to degrade into hydrazine derivatives that tend to increase the risk of cancer, they haven't seen much use these days.

I do remember applying maleic hydrazide on orchids that I used to grow, tho...

sparky (^_^)




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[*] posted on 3-12-2012 at 09:14


In my experience, vinegar works very well to kill grass, and I can get it here for £0.34/L (I buy large quantities of it for the glass bottles:D ).

I did this 5 months ago;

<iframe sandbox width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/UEN7giIu3wM" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

...and the grass still hasn't grown back all the way, yet.




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[*] posted on 3-12-2012 at 17:15


I would say it is equally likely the baking soda was the culprit, given the large quantity you spilled.



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[*] posted on 3-12-2012 at 18:07


Quote: Originally posted by phlogiston  
I would say it is equally likely the baking soda was the culprit, given the large quantity you spilled.


Acetic acid is is amazingly good at killing weeds and grass. It's the ingredient in some environmentally friendly weed killers. Also, in the summer I fill a spray bottle with 7% pickling vinegar and spray the weeds that pop up between the patio bricks. They wilt in 20 minutes and are dead the next day :)
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[*] posted on 3-12-2012 at 18:32


Quote: Originally posted by unionised  
"Sure would be great to have that stuff to put on the grass
during the summer to slow it down "

Try snow.


Snow speeds up the rate that grass grows due to the nitrogen it contains. It would quickly melt and ass some fertilizer to the soil.





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[*] posted on 4-12-2012 at 17:05


In what form is nitrogen present in snow (Nitrate, ammonia, gas)? More than in rain?



[Edited on 5-12-2012 by phlogiston]




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