AXCELLA TURF-TYPE ANNUAL RYEGRASS is a fine texture turf-type annual ryegrass, Lolium multiflorum, developed for winter overseeding dormant bermudagrass and other warm season turf and where rapid spring transition is desired. It will transition out from 4 to 6 weeks earlier than perennial ryegrass. Axcella was developed by the Texas AgriLife Research Center in Overton, Texas, and was selected for slower growing, high tillering, and narrow leaves. It has good winter hardiness and has withstood freezing temperatures as low as 15oF. The color of Axcella is darker than forage type ryegrass, but less dark green than several perennial ryegrass varieties.
Axcella has performed very well on home lawns, football and soccer fields, and should be suitable for golf course fairways and rough areas. The advantages of Axcella are that it can be established quite easily by overseeding warm season turf grasses just as they are about to go dormant for the winter (cool season). This means overseeding in October or November. Seed of Axcella is about 25% larger than perennial ryegrass. Seeding rate should be at least 15 lbs/1000 square feet. Seeding should occur at one overseeding date, and not in multiple seedings. Soil contact is not necessary to facilitate germination, but is highly recommended. Soil pH should be between 5.5 and 7.0. After overseeding, turf must be watered or kept moist for about 7 days to insure it germinates and sets roots. After establishment watering is required only as needed.
Axcella should be mowed from ½ inch to 1 and ½ inches during the growing season. Mowing frequency depends on temperature, but normally this would be once a week or less during the winter, and once a week in the spring. Axcella’s early transition in early to mid-May in east Texas, allows the warm season grass to come back into the sod at a normal time.
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