Return to the Lawn Care Forum | Post a Follow-Up

Help me diagnose the problem and fix my lawn...

Posted by BayAreaFamily USDA 9 (My Page) on
Sun, Mar 17, 13 at 1:47

Hi... I just bought a home with a bad lawn. There are (at least) two types of grass growing.

Can someone help me figure out if there's any hope for this lawn?

I'm in USDA zone 9, in Lafayette, CA. We have what most folks refer to as adobe clay soils -- and the soil under our lawn seems to be hard and compacted.

Any help or guidance would be appreciated. Thanks.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Help me diagnose the problem and fix my lawn...

Here's another photo, if it helps. Let me know if there's any additional info you need that might help.

RE: Help me diagnose the problem and fix my lawn...

You cannot know if that is a bad lawn or not. It's dormant. Here are the 1-2-3 steps of lawn care.

  1. Water deeply and infrequently. Deeply means at least an hour in every zone, all at once. Infrequently means monthly during the cool months and no more than weekly during the hottest part of summer. If your grass looks dry before the month/week is up, water longer next time. Deep watering grows deep, drought resistant roots. Infrequent watering allows the top layer of soil to dry completely which kills off many shallow rooted weeds.

  2. Mulch mow at the highest setting on your mower. Most grasses are the most dense when mowed tall. Bermuda, centipede, and bent grasses are the most dense when mowed at the lowest setting on your mower. Dense grass shades out weeds and uses less water when tall. Dense grass feeds the deep roots you're developing in 1 above.

  3. Fertilize regularly. I fertilize 4 times per year using organic fertilizer. Which fertilizer you use is much less important than numbers 1 and 2 above.

RE: Help me diagnose the problem and fix my lawn...

Thanks, dchall for the follow-up. We just got some rain last week and I'll follow the rest of your advice through spring and summer and see what happens.

 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!

Return to the Lawn Care Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.

Learn more about in-text links on this page here