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  • New lawn advice needed
  • Premier Icon molgrips
    Full Member

    We’re digging a new lawn.

    The local soil type is glacial till, which is clay (and rock!) rich. There’s plenty of topsoil in the garden which is nice and brown and crumbly when it’s moist, but when it’s dry it sets rock hard. This is similar to the exposed soil in the natural landscape – it goes really hard and seems to inhibit even wild plants in places. I’m wondering if the clay content of the subsoil has become part of the topsoil.

    Anyway I want to dig something in, perhaps compost, but should I choose something else? And how much?

    Premier Icon theotherjonv
    Full Member

    If you are doing it now you need to get a trot on, I’d have done it in Sept. Overnight temps are not going to be great for germination. How big is it, you might consider getting some scaffold net which you can peg over it to keep the temp up a bit (and birds off).

    https://www.tubeclampsdirect.co.uk/product/18822/Debris_Netting_Safety_Netting_Green_2M_X_50M?gclid=CjwKCAjwk6-LBhBZEiwAOUUDp7S7tWg3w9QP7T5bLXrTkOhUnmcrAsdJ1MS8IuGlBgW7qWuRlGjauhoCK60QAvD_BwE

    Premier Icon andrewh
    Free Member

    Just leave it, it’ll still be better than Sirromj’s 🤣

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Full Member

    I’m going to turf it. Plenty of people saying mid Oct is good for turf.

    Premier Icon outofbreath
    Free Member

    A rare thread, where hammering frozen sausages is not the answer.

    Premier Icon bassmandan
    Free Member

    I did our lawn – approx 64 sqm in the spring. Similar sounding soil makeup, seems ok until it’s quite dry then it’s like rock. Had an area that hadn’t been turf before, maybe 15 sqm. I stuck a tonne bag of topsoil onto there, and mixed 2T of topsoil across the rest of it. Probably should have done another 1T if not more. But it’s grown incredibly well across the summer. Bit patchy in a couple of place but that’s only noticeable when it’s really short.

    I bought an electric rotavator off Amazon to break up what was there and then rotavated the new stuff through a little bit.

    Premier Icon 5lab
    Free Member

    I used a mix of sharp sand and compost (4:1) on our clay. You need a huge amount to make any difference though, tonnes and tonnes of the stuff

    Premier Icon leffeboy
    Full Member

    A rare thread, where hammering frozen sausages is not the answer

    He is using turf so I think you will find frozen sausages are idea for holding it in place.  I’m not sure where the other memes fit in but I look forward to finding out

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Full Member

    It’s small, only about 12 square metres.

    Not sure about the sand – some people say that if you mix sand and clay it sets rock hard. Last time it was laid I think I mixed in some sand and I think that might’ve been part of my problem.

    1t of compost would be about 8cm depth so I think that might be enough.

    Premier Icon timber
    Full Member

    If grass could grow there before, should be fine. Turf tends to come with pretty rich topsoil. We have some laid over an old concrete path doing OK.
    It won’t be as level as you think you got it.
    You’ll need some fine topsoil to put in your joints afterwards so the turf edges don’t dry out.

    Premier Icon espressoal
    Free Member

    Generally you would only add something to level it if turfing, grass roots don’t go that deep, the turf is doing it for you.

    Sharp sand is the perfect lawn/golf course secret, keeps it perfectly drained and lets air in, and digging down and mixing is more for healthy drainage.

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