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Need help with lawn

Posted by gmanar 7 ( on
Wed, Apr 30, 14 at 12:43

Hi All,

I have some problem maintaining my lawn - it has gotten to the stage where it is now an eyesore - in between 2 neighbors with green lawns :)

Total lawn size is about 5000 sft.

I will try to give as much information as i can :

1. we bought this house last year and this is our first home. I have lived all my life in apartments - so my experience with a lawn and grass are very limited.

2. The builder did not clean the yard very well before laying the sod. I remember big patches of cement - where they mixed the cement for bricks etc.. they kind of just laid the sod over it.

3. I think it is fescue grass. It was nice and green good looking - when they laid it. Last year was fine ... watered it well. Fertilized when my neighbors did - once in july - then in sept/oct. added seed in oct - and lime in oct too.

4. I dont have irrigation - so my watering has been a suspect. I did try to water deeply and less often - but i am not sure i could get 1 inch per week. But it rained so much , so for the most part didnt need to water.

5. this year i did add weed and feed in march - and then in apr first week - was going through the organic lawn care forum and got inspired.

6. I sprayed with baby shampoo + molasses couple of times, added 50 pounds of alfalfa.

7. I have kids and we all tend to play in backyard - so that is also partly the reason for the lawn looking so bad.

8. The other day after about 3 inches of rain - i dug about 6 inches (next day) to see how the ground was - it was bone dry so i am thinking the soil condition is very bad.

Now my questions:
1. Is it possible to have good lawn with kids playing there all the time ?
2. How do i improve organic content in the soil ?
3. Where to we get SBM usually (I only have a TSC around and they dont have it).
4. I am planning to spread compost - so can i put the seed and add about 1/4 inch of compost on top now ? or am i too late ?
5. Any other ideas/suggestions/tips will be of great help.

Thanks for reading the long posting.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Need help with lawn

When you sprayed the shampoo and molasses, did you follow up with deep watering? If not then start over with that project.

Where do you live? Is it possible the grass is mixed with Kentucky bluegrass?

Why can't you get one inch per week? I turn on my sprinkler and turn it off 8 hours later - BINGO - one inch of water. Your sprinkler will be different due to differences in sprinklers, hoses, and water pressure. Mine takes f-o-r-e-v-e-r. Some of the newer underground sprinklers can apply an inch in 20 minutes. You'll have to time yours. I always recommend an oscillator type for the most even coverage. The rain bird type that shoots more water over the grass always seem to show dry spots.

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