Lawn renovation, it's the number 1 searched lawn service on Youtube.
Whilst lawn renovation seems like a good idea to carry out as a DIY project we suggest a little bit of caution.
The biggest challenge with lawn renovation is a lack of predictability of growing conditions and nature.
This links to:
- Ground temperatures.
- Rainfall or watering.
- Quality of the grass seed, and it's age (this matters).
- Soil conditions and constancy of root zone.
- The feed you use.
- The dressing you use.
- The activity of nature, worms.
- The activity of birds, particularly ground feeders like pidgins, crows and starlings.
- When you start to cut, how often and with what type of machine.
So If you have a good idea about the above and you think you can get good control of what's coming ahead for 6-12 weeks then lawn renovation could be a really good project.
How to go about it is fairly straight forward:
In the example below we will run through renovating an existing lawn that's not too bad, we won't be suggesting killing off the existing lawn.
Step 1: Give the lawn a big application of lawn renovator lawn fertiliser, this will kill off weeds, knock the moss growth and dry it out, and give the lawn a fast feed which will help with recovery.
Wait 3 weeks.
Step 2: Scarify the lawn, 3 passes to get all thatch and rough grasses out. Learn more about lawn scarification.
Step 3: Over seed the lawn with a seed that will give you the grass surface you want, that maybe fine ornamental lawn, short cut hard wearing lawn, or just a simple healthy lawn.
Step 4: Dress the lawn with 10-12mm over compost, we have learnt that there is a real balance between too much and too little, you want to cover the seed but you don't want to bury the scarified grass of the exiting lawn.
Step 5: Spray lawn with a seaweed liquid feed, this will help the existing grass kick on but will also support the new grass as it germinates.
Step 6: Lightly roll the lawn area, this will help to evenly bed down the grass seed, and the more constant the depth the more chance there is to get even germination.
Step 7: Watering, twice a day to keep the grass seed damp.
Wait 2-4 weeks
Employ LOT'S of commitment to watering the lawn, it might seem like a chore but the more you commit to getting the grass seed to germinate the less worry there will be that it doesn't.
Step 8: When the grass is 40-50mm high and there is even coverage across the lawn area give the lawn a "clip" just a few mm, this will get things going with new grass activity, the more you cut the more new leaf the individual plants produce and before you know it the lawn starts to fill out.
Step 9: Cut and water, once the grass seed has germinated you can slow down on the watering, but keep in mind if its dry then you'll have to step on the watering.
Step 10: Give the lawn a good slow release feed, this is an added feed on top of the liquid feed which will have run its course. Adding a good quality lawn feed which is a slow release product will help the grass grow, you might find it grows a lot so don't be surprised if you have to cut the lawn every day once the feed kicks in. It will slow down eventually after a few weeks.
So, fingers crossed you'll have a good level of new seed germinated and the old grass in perfect condition.
If you find that the grass has not all come through after 8 weeks you may have to lightly rake areas and re seed again, if you do make sure to apply liquid feed again.