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sod over crabgrass.

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by RigglePLC, Aug 29, 2012.

  1. lawns Etc

    lawns Etc LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,272

    Its done ALOT here too. Some of the biggest do it they mow to the dirt or as close as they can and just put on top! I dont do that but they seem to have pretty good results doing it as I mow several that they have done.
  2. Patriot Services

    Patriot Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 12,873

    They don't pay any better. These guys will also use the cooked leftovers from the sod dealer.:usflag:
  3. Duekster

    Duekster LawnSite Fanatic
    from DFW, TX
    Posts: 7,961

    The photos does not even show that effort.
  4. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,081

    The issue of the 'unsettled lawn' is a major reason to NOT till up old turf when putting down sod... not sure how the warm-season sods do, but up here, when you have mostly CG left in a lawn, it is no trouble to put the sod down on top of the dead groundup bodies of the CG or other weeds... of course the time to do it is the season when the high temperatures are consistantly in the 50s and lows are close to freezing...

    before everyone goes on a rant, especially a warm-season grass people rant, let me say that this practice is not a normal practice, but there are circumstances that it make sense to do it and to be afraid of doing it is the sign of a novice... if indoubt ,aerate with multiple passes first, but many times , even that is an unnecessary expense... :)
  5. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 12,207

    In an earlier preliminary test bluegrass sod was laid over gly-treated grass, tilled up soil and untreated grass. Shady irrigated site. Sod did fairly well, but eventually weakened and today looks weak--probably due to the shade. Tacked down now after about 8 weeks.
    However when this was repeated in August on a sunny non-irrigated site covered with heavy crabgrass...it wilted and then turned brown in the heat. I started to water it 2 minutes per day. It looks somewhat better.

    The goal is to find what is the most feasable method to restore a poor quality lawn? Without spending a fortune. Clearly letting it dry out--is not the way to go.

    Will gly followed by sod without prep work OK?

    Will short cut followed by sod work OK?

    Can it be reseeded in fall?

    In spring?
  6. Patriot Services

    Patriot Services LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 12,873

    By the time you punched 1000's of holes I make one pass with the cutter set shallow and angled. Fluffs up about an inch of soil. Rake off the debris and use the wide rakes to make it level. Rolling is also way underrated. I'm just really picky because sod is what all the neighbors see. Not the cheapest but I'm not lacking in sod jobs.
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  7. Green Resistor

    Green Resistor LawnSite Member
    from USA
    Posts: 27

    One thing is certain, crabgrass can't tolerate shade. There is potential to make sod-over take, but more expertise is required, and time.
  8. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 15,782

    I've laid sod with nothing more than a power rake and it does fine (Bermuda). It's also great when you have a lawn that the grade is so close to no fall for drainage that any dips and bumps can cause puddling. This would not be my standard practice, but I've done it and the Bermuda is doing fine.

    I've also used a Harley rake and a mini skid tiller. Did not like the tiller.
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    Last edited: Aug 30, 2012
  9. xtreem3d

    xtreem3d LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 801

    harley rakes are awesome..too bad you need a 2nd mortgage to buy one :laugh:
  10. Think Green

    Think Green LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,746

    I have trimmed down weedy lawns to a height of 1/2 inch and no more than 1 inch. The existing grasses were not dense..by no means, and then warm season sod laid on top. Fertilizers were applied before and lime. The warm season sod did fine with ample periodic watering. The plot was level to begin with, so don't get this mixed up with bumpy novice sodding practices. The sod will settle in and will flatten out in time but not to an extent of the existing grade.
    Riggle, I am confused about what you are proving unless you are trying to prove success with mediocre cost involvements.
    I have had numerous issues with cost factors from certain clients that want to skip the grading, complete kill, and soil prep steps to save money to the bottom line. Even after the sod is rolled in the outcome is somewhat iffy. In a pinch, if tilling, rolling, and other soil prep work isn't in the budget of the customer, then you can do the top sod method and have success.............don't know about sodded fescues and bluegrasses.
    One year, a local supplier sold fes-blue sod and made a killing on locals.......but the reality wasn't very prosperous. Let's just say that he didn't hang around long and if he did, his credibility would be bolstered with ridicule.

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