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Lawns

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tomplum
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Hieronymous
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 :: Pastimes :: Gardening
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Hieronymous
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Wed Jan 28 2015, 07:44
I am not in any way, shape or form a gardener. It's not something I particularly care for.


What I believe I am good at is looking after lawns. I don't really see it as 'gardening'.

I had hoped to do some renovations last Autumn but circumstances conspired against me so I'll have to do it this coming Spring.

Not really the right way to do it but needs must.
veg grower
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Fri Jan 30 2015, 13:02
I think you have probably done right in leaving it to the spring Heiro as often snow, ice and frost can do a lot of damage to lawns over winter.  No expert on lawns - the most I ever did was run a mower over one (quickly as possible) and rake and fork it occasionally - but if you wait til the worst of winter is over ie not walking on it if possible then you should be fine. Smile
Hieronymous
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Sat Jan 31 2015, 07:55
Thanks, Veg, but I'm afraid I'd have to disagree. After all don't trees drop their seeds in Autumn? I also think the frost helps in 'chitting' the seed but on that I stand to be corrected. Certainly the freezing and thawing helps in making the soil more friable.


Here's a renovation I did a few years back which I recorded. Not sure how many photos I can put on an individual post so we'll see.

Tools for the task:

Stiff brush for dragbrushing topdressing

Lawns LawnRenovation010


Appropriate lawn seed:


Lawns LawnRenovation009


Electric lawn raker (for people with electric lawns!!):

Lawns LawnRenovation008

Sufficient quantity of suitable topdressing:

Lawns LawnRenovation007

Seed/Fertiliser/ topdressing spreader:

Lawns LawnRenovation005

Mower:

Lawns LawnRenovation004

Mantis Tiller and a selection of tines:

Lawns LawnRenovation002

Appropriate fertiliser. Low nitrogen content and high-ish potassium content in Autumn. T'other way round in Spring. Check the N:P:K

1. Mow the lawn closely, bearing in mind you never remove more than a third of the leaf in one operation, and box off clippings.

2. Give the lawn a damn good scarifying. I used the Mantis Tiller fitted with scarifying tines for this and it always amazes me just how much rubbish comes out of the lawn

3. Then I tidied it up using the electric lawn raker.

4. Using the Mantis Tiller fitted with aeration tines I aerated the lawn:

Lawns LawnRenovation012

5. Then used the electric lawn raker to tidy up

Lawns LawnRenovation016

6. Sow the seed. Try to sow at 35gms per m²

7. Apply topdressing in a suitable fashion so you don't get too thick/thin a layer.

8. Dragbrush to work everything into the soil. Bit labour intensive!

9. Apply fertiliser at appropriate rate. Don't want any fert. scorch.

I was quite lucky when I did this as just about at the point where I was finishing it began to rain lightly which was ideal.

Result the following Spring:

Lawns PICT0022
veg grower
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Sat Jan 31 2015, 11:03
I think you know what you are doing Heiro when it comes to lawns. I love the before and after pics - your lawn was well lush come spring! I never had a lawn as good as that. Laughing
Hieronymous
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Sat Jan 31 2015, 11:08
Thanks Veg. It's something I quite enjoy doing. As opposed to 'gardening' which just frustrates the hell outa me.
veg grower
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Sat Jan 31 2015, 11:32
I wouldn't mind, but the corners are perfect too and it lies flush with your paving - looks like a bowling green. Laughing

Hieronymous
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Sun Feb 01 2015, 08:20
I'm a little puzzled over some of my photographs.

Looking again at the one I thought was Spring it appears to be Autumn going by the number of leaves on the ground. Renovations aside I don't recall taking any photos in Autumn.

Also I couldn't find a picture of fertiliser in my Photobucket which I'm sure I took. I may have deleted it but I can't remember.

Anyway here's a photo which I'm fairly certain was taken in Spring. Though which one I'm not sure. It was quite a while ago when I did this!

Lawns Lawn27-4-2013002_zpscf5dec68

I think this was in Spring anyway.
tomplum
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Sun Feb 01 2015, 14:39
yes hieron, thats no way to treat a bowling green, but very well done, I cheat, I get greenthumb to treat my lawns, they charge £15 a treatment, 4 treatments a year and its really made a differance,

Lawns Sam_0310
Temeluchus
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Sun Feb 01 2015, 14:54
Wish I could have a perfect lawn, but it's massive, I have trees, it slopes, and I have a dog (and neighbours cats!).

Stunning job though, is that. Lawns 709307421
dickypoos
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Sun Feb 01 2015, 16:20
WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO SOW A LAWN ?(IN THE SPRING) , IS 35 GMS ABOUT A TEA CUP FULL PER METRE ?. THE SOIL IS QUITE GOOD , NEXT TO A SMALL RIVER . I SHALL ROTAVATE IT AND RAKE IT READY , AFTER THE COLD WEATHER ? , DOES IT HAVE TO BE WARM .? Very Happy I WAS ONCE TOLD ( SAID WITH A WEST COUNTRY ACCENT IS BEST ) " WHEN THE LYNIT IN IN THE SCARROWING SHED , AND YOUR GRUMMITS HAVE ALL TURNED BLACK , THEN THE NEAREST TUESDAY TO A QUARTER MOON IS THE TIME TO SOW". BUT I THOUGHT I'D ASK YOU INSTEAD .
Temeluchus
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Sun Feb 01 2015, 18:05
I'd wait until it's a little warmer, personally, but that's just me.

Re the amount of seed, I've seen it where there are metre squares pegged out, and measured the amount of seed out, then spread. Whenever I've been fixing patches etc. I just mix the seed in with some good quality growbag, and throw the lot down. Hiero is somewhat more qualified than me though, comparing my results to his Laughing
Hieronymous
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Sun Feb 01 2015, 19:51
@tomplum wrote:yes hieron, thats no way to treat a bowling green, but very well done, I cheat, I get greenthumb to treat my lawns, they charge £15 a treatment, 4 treatments a year and its really made a differance,

Lawns Sam_0310

Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy Very Happy
Hieronymous
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Sun Feb 01 2015, 19:52
Thank you all for your kind comments.
Hieronymous
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Sun Feb 01 2015, 20:03
@dickypoos wrote:WHEN IS THE BEST TIME TO SOW A LAWN  ?(IN THE SPRING) , IS 35 GMS ABOUT A TEA CUP FULL PER METRE ?. THE SOIL IS QUITE GOOD ,  NEXT TO A SMALL RIVER . I SHALL ROTAVATE IT AND RAKE IT READY , AFTER THE COLD WEATHER ? , DOES IT HAVE TO BE WARM .? Very Happy  I WAS ONCE TOLD ( SAID WITH A WEST COUNTRY ACCENT IS BEST ) " WHEN THE LYNIT IN IN THE SCARROWING SHED , AND YOUR  GRUMMITS HAVE ALL TURNED BLACK , THEN THE NEAREST TUESDAY TO  A QUARTER MOON IS THE TIME TO SOW". BUT I THOUGHT I'D ASK YOU INSTEAD .  


I know nothing about 'lynits' and 'grummits' but the best time to sow - as indicated in the OP - is in Autumn.

Having missed it now you'll/I'll have to wait till the weather warms up and the soil temperature rises. I've noted, though, that Winter usually has a sting in the tail so be wary.

If you're going to sow your seed by hand then perhaps a measuring cup/jug would be your best bet.

Don't forget you'll need good seed to soil contact otherwise you're just feeding the birds.

Acquire some good quality topdressing

Oh! And if you're going to rotavate and rake it after the application of seed and topdressing give it a good dowsing* and then roll to consolidate. Apart from that try and avoid rolling as you'll be doing more harm than good especially in terms of compaction.

*When it comes to watering a lawn we use the opposite method to what is usually recommended. i.e. water it heavily and infrequently.
Hieronymous
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Sun Feb 01 2015, 20:08
@Temeluchus wrote:Wish I could have a perfect lawn, but it's massive, I have trees, it slopes, and I have a dog (and neighbours cats!).

Stunning job though, is that. Lawns 709307421

Thanks very much.

I don't know what your lawn is like but I understand your difficulties. Especially if your dog's a bitch, if you see what I mean. Bitch urine will kill the grass.

The slope may help with drainage and you can get shade tolerant grass seed.

If it's massive then you'd be well advised to acquire a suitable mower if you haven't already got one.
Hieronymous
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Sun Feb 01 2015, 20:15
By the way, something I haven't mentioned is when the grass begins to germinate.

In an ideal world you should 'top' the grass with a rotary mower when it's about 50cm long and do this quite frequently to get it to 'tiller' (thicken). After about four rotary mowing operations, revert to a cylinder mower and, in both cases, make sure your blades are sharp so you're cutting the grass and not tearing it.

Again cut quite frequently so that you get a thick carpet of grass.

Personally I think you get a better cut with a cylinder mower but rotaries have their place.

I appreciate very few will be in a position to do the above so you'll just have to adapt as best you can.
Temeluchus
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Sun Feb 01 2015, 21:25
I have a nice petrol Mountfield rotary mower, Hiero. Dog is a dog, but I'd have a job fencing parts of the garden off whilst renovating the lawn.

Plus, much like you with gardening I suppose, I haven't the patience for the cylinder mowing, scarifying etc.

Though what particularly used to make me chuckle was our previous neighbour, who had the electric scarifier, expensive grass seed, all that weed and feed stuff, and used to religiously care for his lawn. Only for once the heavens opened, for it to become boggy and waterlogged, because he built a brick retainer at the bottom with no thought of drainage. Whereas I only really mowed mine, and it always looked healthier than his. Very Happy
dickypoos
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Mon Feb 02 2015, 10:20
Mr H thank you , you too Tem . Lawns 3437590732
Hieronymous
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Mon Feb 02 2015, 13:28
@dickypoos wrote:Mr H thank you , you too Tem . Lawns 3437590732

Most welcome. However, I've just noticed that my post to you doesn't read quite right. What I meant was:

1. Rotavate and rake

2. Apply seed

3. Apply topdressing

4. Rake it over to even out

5. Give it a good dowsing.

6. Roll to consolidate

7. Keep off until sufficient germination has occurred.


Last edited by Hieronymous on Mon Feb 02 2015, 13:29; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Do I need a reason?)
veg grower
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Mon Feb 02 2015, 14:03
I can't believe you spend so much money on a lawn. Laughing

Edit - comment was more at Tomplum. Regardless, no offence was intended. Laughing
Hieronymous
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Sat Feb 07 2015, 07:48
@veg grower wrote:I can't believe you spend so much money on a lawn. Laughing

Edit - comment was more at Tomplum.  Regardless, no offence was intended. Laughing


None taken, Veggie. Lawn maintenance involves rather more than most people realise.

Something that I have noticed is that a lot of people will try and take care off the grass whilst completely ignoring the soil. Generally speaking a healthy soil equals a healthy grass. Aeration is key.
veg grower
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Thu Feb 12 2015, 16:49
Lawns 709307421
Hieronymous
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Sun Mar 08 2015, 20:35
As the weather is improving, as it should, I shall probably attempt renovations next weekend. Assuming suitable weather, of course.

I shall take relevant photos.
veg grower
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Mon Mar 09 2015, 12:02
Look forward to the pics Heiro!
Hieronymous
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Sun Mar 22 2015, 07:53
It looks like it's going to be a nice day but I don't yet know what the temp is/will be.

According to Metcheck there's going to be rain overnight so it looks like today is going to be as good as any for my lawn renovs.

Just need to get some Spring/Summer fert.
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