Need some lawn redo help asap

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by srl28, Oct 16, 2010.

  1. srl28

    srl28 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,176

    Have a customer who will be doing a lot of work with us, some new retaining walls, landscaping, walkways, landscape lighting and last but not least some major lawn renovation work.

    Lawn is not irrigated, which may become more and more of a factor as we go. It gets pretty much all sun and is pretty wide open and level. The previous owner neglected it and it shows. Hardly ever cut it, fertilized it, etc. Looks like the builders special lawn. It is very patchy with tufts of good thick grass mixed in spots the size of basketballs that are brown and dead, you can scrath up thatch and dirt with your hand.

    Heres our solution and the problem. We re thinking at this point, because it doesnt look too bad, it isnt a total rake up and redo. So we re thinking to topdress it with a good layer of topsoil, possibly aerate and then seed. THe problem is that it is already mid-October here in North Jersey. Too late to be doing topdress and seed? Need some help on this asap as we are delaying all of the other work and possibly the entire job because of not being sure yet if its too late or not.

    Anyone?- too late or not?
     
  2. sweetjetskier

    sweetjetskier LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 403

    Why would you want to fix the lawn now when you said you are going to be adding walls, landscape plantings,patios,etc??

    The lawn is done after all the extensive work is done.

    My 2 cents
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  3. srl28

    srl28 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,176

    Think you missed the point. Fixing the lawn is part of the overall project at hand. The lawn is the final stage, obviously, of the project. It will only take us a few days for the walls and walkway to be completed at which point the lawn will be addressed. So the question is, is it too late to topdress, overseed, and/or reseed a lawn up here in North Jersey?
     
  4. sweetjetskier

    sweetjetskier LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 403

    No,I don't think I missed the point at all,you posted you have a customer who "will"be doing walks,walls,plantings,not they are almost done with walls,walks,plantings as today.

    Huge difference.

    Do a dormant seed once it hits late november, we do a ton of dormant seedings,res,comm,sports turf,etc and get great results with dormant seeding
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  5. JoJo1990

    JoJo1990 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 244

    If they are not going to at least have temporary irrigation setup until the seed is established, you may as well throw $20 bills at the lawn. There is a reason it looks like it does...Fix the problem, don't patch it. They need to invest or at least promise to add about an inch of water per week with hoses and sprinklers.
     
  6. srl28

    srl28 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,176

    Irrigation may be an issue you are correct. We spoke with the customers about that and they of course dont want to spend the money on an irrigation system. Of course we also explained how the lawn may/will suffer because of that. A good amount of the lawns in the area do not have systems but are doing just fine. It was clearly a lack of care on the previous owners part and the fact that it wasnt well seeded in the first place.


    Temporary irrigation will be set up thats not a problem. So we re still back to the same issue. Is it worth doing the seeding and all now or holding off until spring?
     
  7. JoJo1990

    JoJo1990 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 244

    Temporary irrigation until the seed establishes will be just fine. What are your daily temps at now? Any frost at night?

    You may get some quicker establishing grasses like fescues or rye to come up this year yet. Best case scenario would be to wait but that may not be an option for you or the homeowner. You could still do your cleanup and raking now along with the topdressing. This will add some nutrients to the soil over the winter. You would save the seeding then for the spring. This may also entice the homeowner to stay on top of the irrigation since most people want the yard to green up and look nice in the spring.
     
  8. srl28

    srl28 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,176

    Good thought!

    Temps are in the low 40's at night and so far no frost really. Today is a high of 70 and low of 50 something so we ll see
     
  9. Oasis360

    Oasis360 LawnSite Member
    Posts: 41

    I had just finished a lawn in early october here in Portland Ore, and its coming up great now. Was heavy in Fescue and KBG. I used a hose, turret style spike in ground sprinkler, and a once a day timer set for 1pm to 2pm each day. I keep a medium cover of straw on the lawn to help maintain moisture. We have sunny days and mid sixties here now
    Posted via Mobile Device
     
  10. srl28

    srl28 LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,176

    Nice! so we should be good to go. Now the problem is how to topdress such a large area. No one around here rents the hopper kind that spreads the topsoil. Looks like loader and a lot of hand raking!
     

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