- December 30, 2016
- By Mike
- In Aeration, Renovation, Soil
- Tags Mowing
Renovating a lawn can be a tricky process even professionals encounter problems when working with a living thing. As with all living things there are no guarantees in nature. Many people try and fail or may even do things correctly but still encounter problems when trying to renovate their lawn. A lawn will only ever be as good as the site and soil it is grown in which unfortunately we are stuck with so its best to specify the lawn by the varieties of grass species to the site and soil. Here are a few pointers to help if you are deciding on renovating a lawn or deciding to lay a new lawn.
A lawn requires renovating when more than 25% of it is dominated by moss, the grass plants are thinning or dying and struggling to regenerate as they are being out competed by weeds and moss and will not respond to treatments. You will always end up with a better lawn by growing one from seed than laying turf. But it is a slower though more rewarding process.
So where to start firstly you need to establish why the lawn is struggling this may be down to a drop or increase in PH level which is causing a nutritional uptake deficiency. A fungal or insect problem lack of water or a man made problem. It may be due to soil sickness or a drop in microbial activity or poor management from the current lawn operator. Some soil sicknesses may require using sterile and non organic dressings so as not to feed unwanted fungal growths. So its important to survey and assess every possible cause.
Once you can eliminate the cause even then there may be things going on you cant see Aeration is the best thing you can do for your lawn.
All things need oxygen so a good place to start before spending lots of money is aeration. Oxygen and Carbon Dioxide gasses form a life cycle process within your lawn. Oxygen needs to enter and Carbon Dioxide needs to exit. If the lawn does not have enough oxygen the living things in your soil such as bacteria, protozoa, fungi and nematodes cannot survive. Your soil will become sterile. The roots of the plants will literally begin to suffocate as they cannot breath. So if your soil is hard and compacted you need to open the soil and may need to add either washed sand or organic based dressing. To keep those entry ways open and feed the bio diversity in your soil. Hollow tine aeration particularly has the most benefit and will also open up some of the top surface thatch layer.
Soil Ph tells you how acidic or how alkaline your soil is. The more acidic a soil the more gentle you have to be. Acidity effects nutrient availability within the soil which will effect the overall health growth rate of the plants you are growing but will also effect the growth rate, quantity and reproduction of living organisms in your soil. The more alkaline a soil the more calcium or chalk (limestone) you have. Calcium if very important in plants its the building blocks of cell walls. But again too much and it will restrict the uptake of other essential elements.
So having Surveyed for the cause of your problem, Aerated and obtained PH readings. The next thing you might want to consider is nutrition. Do the plants have the correct nutrient levels available. If they do but are still struggling then chances are the plants are unable to access certain nutrients even though they are within the soil. This is where foliar feeding comes in a foliar feed enables a lawn operator to spray inaccessible nutrients onto a lawn so they can be immediately absorbed through the leaf and available to the plant. So even if you are applying feed as a granular in some cases the feeds may be inaccessible to the plants and simply leaching from the soil.
Weeds and Moss
Competing weeds and moss will need to be eliminated. You will have to do this before sewing any seed. Weeds and moss are a continual management process.
So if your thinking about sewing seed as with all things buy the best you can and specify it to the site and PH level. Again as with all living things the seed is only as good as its supplier and needs to be kept correctly. And watered until established.
If your thinking about lawn renovation our FREE lawn survey will help you. Did you know it actually costs us £25 to conduct a survey per customer.