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top dressing??

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by 1wildcatfan, Jun 19, 2010.

  1. 1wildcatfan

    1wildcatfan LawnSite Member
    Posts: 5

    need advice on trying to smooth out a grass infield and grass baselines on a little league baseball field. is top dressing a possibility without killing the existing grass? if so, what is the best way to do it.

  2. JoeKidd

    JoeKidd LawnSite Member
    Posts: 55

    Start off with a good compost mix by purchasing it from a trusted landscaping supply center. I spread wheelbarrow piles out about 6ft from each other and spread the piles out using a iron rake then i take a dethatching rake and feather the compost in the existing grass so you don't smother any of the grass. Then I overseed the area and kinda rake in lightly to the compost with a rake, drop some starter fert and water it a few times a day keeping it wet until new grass is coming up nicely. Since I started topdressing my lawn I've olny needed to fertilize it once a year in the fall and it stays green and healthy all year. i try and stay away from the chems as much as I can. Healthy soil with lots of healthy organic **** is what I'm after.:)
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2010
  3. RDA

    RDA LawnSite Member
    Posts: 177

    In my opinion, top dressing can help to smooth out some but you can only do so much. If you top dress and make a concerted effort to fill some voids and dips in the lawn (and that depends on how bad it is), you can improve the leveling but you really should seed those areas that you fill to a greater extent than the surrounding area. Also, power raking can help knock down the high spots and it along with aerating, top dressing and seeding can improve the situation.

    It depends on how much effort you want to make and how bad the situation is.


  4. phasthound

    phasthound LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,583

    For good compost in your area contact Pogo Tree Experts 17328 Georgia Ave Olney, MD 301-774-2968
  5. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 15,782

    Cool or warm season grass? If you are trying to smooth out a field, compost is not going to do it, you need sand.
  6. johnb@mdsgroup.net

    johnb@mdsgroup.net Inactive
    Posts: 2

    Topdressing can help level out a turf area. It may require topdressing the area several times, once in the spring and once in the fall, with no more than 1/2" of topdressing material. After topdressing it may be necessary to pull a drag mat over the area to try and fill in the low spots with more of the material. If the lawn is really rough it may be necessary to run a powered device over it to knock off the high spots. This would require reseeding and then topdressing since you will destroy the existing turf. In the south, on warm season grasses, most topdressing companies use sand for leveling and add compost to the soil for the nutrients, to help improve microbial activity and improve the cation exchange.

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