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Old 12th October 2010, 02:18 PM   #1
greengrass
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Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 1
Default Tips for growing a lawn from scratch

Hope this is useful for you all !

New Lawn Ground Preparation
by Greengrass
Ground preparation is the most important part of owning and maintaining a new real green grass lawn.

BEFORE you do anything, you must clear the soil of existing weeds. Weeds fall into a few categories. Firstly there are annuals, which grow seed and die. Then there are perennials like anise, dandelions etc which will keep appearing unless the root is killed. Then there are the seasonal weeds which lay dormant and grow when the rains arrive in spring or autumn or when the soil temperature is right. The first two types can be eradicated with an application of a total non-selective herbicide (weed killer) containing "glyphosate", which uses the green leaves to enter the system of the plant and kill it down to the roots. The other weeds (dormant weed seeds) can be controlled with a pre-emergent type of weed killer to kill the dormant seeds in the ground before they germinate. This should be applied in the Spring. When all the existing weeds have browned off (2-3 weeks) they can be dug into the soil. Remove any stones from the soil as you come across them.

The first consideration once the growing weeds have been killed, is to establish your final lawn height, if the soil is already at this level then you should really think about removing the top few inches and replace with a good topsoil. If this is not adopted then infill what you have got with the topsoil to level the ground.

It is not imperative that you improve the top few inches of soil with topsoil, compost or other material, but it sure helps. Make sure that the area to be planted is well drained. Drainage is important for good lawn health. If you need to improve the drainage, add extra sharp sand to the top soil dressing of your lawn. Gypsum is useful to break up clay - water it in. You can also add extra sand/substrate material when the lawn is established, but itís a lot easier to do this at this early stage. If adding topsoil or compost try to dig it in a little or maybe lightly rotovate.

Rake, roll and level the ground, tamp down, and water well to encourage any weed seeds to germinate. If possible leave for a few weeks to see whether any more weeds appear and for the soil to settle. If only a few weeds appear, they can be removed by hand, but if there are a lot, then another treatment of weed killer will need to be applied. Also if necessary, again fill in any dips in the ground that may have appeared.
At this stage you should be ready to start planting your grass plugs.

My next article will be about renovating an old lawn.

Last edited by eldeano; 12th October 2010 at 04:03 PM. Reason: Commercial links removed
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