Bumpy ride

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by NBLL, Sep 27, 2002.

  1. NBLL

    NBLL LawnSite Member
    Posts: 77

    Customer called today who has a circle driveway with about 5k sq. ft. inside the circle. They want it power seeded but also want it leveled out. He mows his own lawn and it is a pretty bumpy ride. There are no ruts or holes it's just rough and it is mostly clay. Are there any suggestions on how to smooth this area out maybe in coordination with seeding? If I core aerate, will the cores fill in to smooth it out? Should I consider getting a load of topsoil and spreading it out?
     
  2. Scag48

    Scag48 LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,067

    I think that top dressing would be the best way to go. That's about the only thing that I can think of. Possibly a top dress with an overseed?
     
  3. CMerLand

    CMerLand LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 393

    When you say bumpy, how bumpy??? Are the bumps possibly caused by his mowing in the same pattern over the same lines year after year whats caused this? Or did perhaps he have some traffic or mowing equipment across the lawn while it was wet?

    A couple of times Ive rented vibratory rollers to roll over top of lawns that were dented but not overly rutted by trucks or tractor damage across the lawn. This takes the high spots out of the lawn pretty quickly and gets everything back to smooth. Then we aerate the hell out of the area to relieve the compaction of the vibrator. Works very well for lawns that are rough but dont really have ruts requiring adding soil or whatnot.
     
  4. Ax Man

    Ax Man LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 446

    Aerate, topdress, overseed, collect $$$
     
  5. AielLandscaping

    AielLandscaping LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 302

    i don't know if this will work for your situation since it's used as a drive way, but if you could i'd rototiller the whole thing and then rake the surface around to find the high spots. you can use the tiller like a plow to move dirt around if necessary. the use a roller to firm things up a little. re-till the problem areas and level it again. then seed it, fertilize it, put down whatever covering you use (humus, straw, peat moss etc) and roll it one last time.
     
  6. MOW ED

    MOW ED LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 5,028

    The clay soil is the nasty bugger. I work in heavy clay and have a few lawns with real bumpy areas. There really is no great solution short of frequent aerations and possibly some top dressing. The expensive solution is to rip it all out and import some real topsoil and resod or seed it. But eventually the underlying clay will have its way.

    People always want me to roll it and I always refuse. I dont believe in compaction.
     
  7. Flex-Deck

    Flex-Deck LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,846

    In Iowa we have clay and black dirt - but it is the nite crawlers that get us big time, and when it gets dry it is one bumpy ride.

    You can top dress all you want, resod all you want but the nite crawlers will win in the end no matter what you do -

    Buy a mower that has 4 foot tall tires, - weighs about 3000 lbs, and can mow what you need mowed - maybe that would smash the nite crawlers.

    Thanks, Brad
     
  8. NBLL

    NBLL LawnSite Member
    Posts: 77

    When you say bumpy, how bumpy??? Are the bumps possibly caused by his mowing in the same pattern over the same lines year after year whats caused this? Or did perhaps he have some traffic or mowing equipment across the lawn while it was wet?

    This guy has a back injury which is aggravated when he mows this section. I imagine it was caused by the construction crew leveling the yard with clay dug from the basement. His idea was to bring in and spread topsoil. I'm hoping to find something a little simpler than this. BTW what is top dressing??
     
  9. 65hoss

    65hoss LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,360

    Aeration isn't going to smooth it out for him. You will not have enough cores to fill in the low spots. Topdress and drag it will help to fill in the low spots.
    Topdress is applying a material to the top of the lawn that will work its way down into the soil. Unfortunately most people think of sand. Compost, peat, even a mixture with sand is ok.
     
  10. Flex-Deck

    Flex-Deck LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,846

    I think your solution is 4" of concrete with green dye ---:D
     

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