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Where do I start? Overrun with weeds and no experience.

Posted by lily-addie TN (My Page) on
Sun, May 3, 09 at 8:04

Ok, heres the deal. I have no idea what Im doing. I have tried looking online to find the best way to approach my problem but I am getting too much conflicting information. Now, I have no idea where to start.

Our lawn is overrun with weeds. I dont know what to do first and what steps to take in caring for my lawn in the future.

First off, we live in TN and I have no clue what kind of grass we have. We live in a subdivision and I think they put down the cheapest grass they could find. There is little to no turf and the grass seems hard. It is not a desirable place to take your shoes off or roll around in.
I have not put any products on the lawn. Im too confusedI have never irrigated b/c I didnt know I should until reading this checklist and I have no idea when and how.
I would not say that this lawn is established. The sod was laid last Feb. On this note is it possible to seed with a different grass? I think I am showing my ignorance with this question.

I do not know at what height we mow.suggestions? And I have not completed a soil test.
The entire lawn is overrun with a variety of weeds. The turf seems very thin and I there is a lot of clay and rocks directly under the sod. I do not know what types of weeds are in the lawn. I have taken photos and will try to post them. I know there are dandelions but do not know the others. This is a recurring problem from last year and Im afraid at how out of control it is.

I would really like to take an organic approach to fixing this problem or a homemade remedy. Budgets are tight right now and I do not what to run us to the poor house to save our lawn. I do understand some cost may be unavoidable and I am prepared to invest in this matter.
The only thing I have physically tried thus far is hand pulling the weeds. These weeds are so well established I was leaving craters in the lawn. This is not a future option.

I appreciate you taking the time to read this and would love to have a step by step solution. I need to know what to do about the weeds and how to maintain my lawn in the future.

Below are the links to photos....
[IMG]http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i164/addie143us/May32009017.jpg[/IMG]
[IMG]http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i164/addie143us/May32009018.jpg[/IMG]
[IMG]http://i72.photobucket.com/albums/i164/addie143us/May32009019.jpg[/IMG]


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Where do I start? Overrun with weeds and no experience.

Ok the links to those photos did not work.
I will try again below...

http://s72.photobucket.com/albums/i164/addie143us/Lawn/

Here is a link that might be useful: Photobucket


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RE: Where do I start? Overrun with weeds and no experience.

I'm thinking that you are not particularly committed to the existing lawn. What would you think about simply starting from the beginning and doing it all to your own standard?

I had a situation something like yours and I started by fixing up the soil. I brought in truckloads of manure and sawdust, composted it on the spot, and then planted fresh. Now I have soft ground and don't need to water the grass - the soil holds water well.

In the meantime I would suggest you set the mower as high as it goes and just keep things roughly even.


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RE: Where do I start? Overrun with weeds and no experience.

None of your links work.


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RE: Where do I start? Overrun with weeds and no experience.

I agree with Ken. Sounds like a re-do is in order. Fall is the best time to do that, either by seeding or even sod (though if you have the money for it you can do sod now if you can keep it well irrigated while it roots in and during hot times this summer).

First thing is read a lot about yard care here. Search seeding, overseeding, sod, fertilizing, watering, etc and you will find tons of info on how to do those basic things. Then you can choose a game plan you like on what you want to do.

A little knowledge is a big help.


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RE: Where do I start? Overrun with weeds and no experience.

I just go with a simple, budget-friendly plan to start.

Mow at least once a week on the highest mower setting. This will discourage weed growth and reduce water requirements.

Mulch mow the clippings back into the lawn. This reduces fertilizer needs and water requirements.

Fertilize now with any standard lawn fertilizer - organic will work fine.

Don't bother watering now, but once summer hits, water once a week with 1" of water. Any easy way to measure one inch is to take an empty tuna can and put it out when you start the sprinkler. When it is full, you are done.

If you really do have a ton of weeds, you might consider a 1 time treatment with weed-b-gon. The hose-end sprayer kinds covers a large area quickly. It definitely isn't organic, but it is cheap and fast and won't interfere with your ability to chose an all-organic program down the line.

If you do those things, your lawn will improve dramatically from now until the end of summer. It definitely won't be perfect, but it should be a ton better. At that point, you can decide if you are happy with "improved" or want to start over with premium seed and go for a showcase quality lawn.


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RE: Where do I start? Overrun with weeds and no experience.

I tried looking at your photobucket but it's asking for a password.

I live in Northern Alabama and my house was built about 2 years ago and it sounds like I had the same problems as you. My lawn is beautiful now and I really didn't put THAT much time or money into it.

If I can see your photos maybe I can help


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RE: Where do I start? Overrun with weeds and no experience.

My guess is you have Bermuda grass. Without seeing it no one can say what you have. If it is Bermuda, all you have to do is take care of it and it will repair itself.


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