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Old 01-12-2010, 03:09 PM
Redline9k Redline9k is offline
LawnSite Member
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Saint Louis, MO
Posts: 17
Help designing a Midwest shady lawn w/ dogs

Recently a client asked about their back lawn. At first inspection, its a 50x60 area that sits directly on top of Saint Louis clay mines. Needless to say, organic matter and drainage is pretty non-existant at this point being mostly soft clay soil and the PH is very acidic. To top that off, the owner has a 30' diameter southern magnolia shading off a majority of the lawn when foliage is present spring-fall. And to make it even better...they have two dogs who play in the entire yard.

The lawn appears to have had several attempts at repair. The unshaded sections are a k-31 that seems to be thriving and relatively un-destroyed by the dogs, while the shaded area under the tree is a tall fescue mix that is almost completely bare. The client claims to be reseeding twice a year, but notes that any good rainfall leaves standing water and the dogs kick up any new (or existing) seedlings running about.

I am scratching my head trying to think of what to do for the client. I am leaning to tilling the shaded area with organics and sand or turface to help drainage and resodding with farmed bluegrass due to the shade, but i cant imagine that will hold up any better to dog paws.

any ideas, short of putting in a pool?

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