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Discussion in 'Homeowner Assistance Forum' started by sphat_mc, Apr 20, 2011.

  1. sphat_mc

    sphat_mc LawnSite Member
    Posts: 24

    I'm in the process the process of getting quotes to re-do my lawn. All said there is probably about 1 1/2 to 2 acres of lawn to be re-done on a hilly property. There are quite a few areas that need to be "leveled" or feathered out.

    I've had two companies come over with 2 entirely different approaches. One guy wants to till the lawn and put down very high quality top soil and then seed, straw and put down what I think he called mats to help keep the seed in place when it rains on the hilly areas.

    The other guy is recommending putting in a french drain in the front of the property along with a combination of hydro seeding and areovating. I'm not that familiar with this recommendation, but after a little research it seems like a good idea.

    Either way, I know it is not going to be cheap. Do any of you guys have personal experience with either method (pros/cons)?

  2. ChiTownAmateur

    ChiTownAmateur LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 386

    Aerating and hydroseeding will not solve your problems of bumpy areas...likewise tilling and smoothing out areas won't necessarily fix a bad drainage problem.

    Do you have irrigation of any sort? How will you keep the areas wet, even if hydroseeding or topdressed with straw? That's an important consideration here imo.

    Guy #1 sounds to me like someone that wants you to spend some $$$ but will give you a great result...the only thing you/he didn't address with his approach is the possible drainage issues that the other guy wants to address with a french drain. I would call the first guy and ask him about that. While on the phone, ask him for his opinion on the need for more topsoil versus what you have. He may want to bring it in in order to level the areas better which would make sense.

    #1 is a much more complete and thorough solution imo, except for the possible drainage issue. Hydroseeding is "cool" and works, but there is no particular need for it if he uses mats on the hilly areas which can achieve the same results. Hydroseeding also is limited in what seed is available usually.

    Make sure, no matter what you do, that they use top quality seed. You can buy it and supply it...or if you want to be a good customer just specify you want top quality seed and get a commitment on what he will use and why. As the customer he should educate you some so that you are comfortable with everything he'll do.
  3. sphat_mc

    sphat_mc LawnSite Member
    Posts: 24

    Thanks ChiTownAmateur! Reading your post, gave me something to think about. Surprisingly, guy #1 came in a lot cheaper than the hydro seeding guy. Also, talking with guy #1 as well as a company specializing in waterproofing, the french drain guy #2 was recommending wasn't the proper fix for draining. I needed to something called curtain drain with a swail (sp??)... and this costs some big bucks. Both said to see what happens once a good lawn is in. That should help a lot.

  4. agrostis

    agrostis LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,294

    If this is a expensive project then why not wait till fall to do it right? You will probably get 50% more germination in September. Unless you have irrigation you could have a large failure. This is not just my opinion, its a fact.

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