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Topdressing lawn / Advice

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by mictrik, Sep 9, 2009.

  1. mictrik

    mictrik LawnSite Member
    Posts: 245

    My front lawn is now (thanks to landscaping) small at 1600 square feet. Due to trees the lawn is shady 50-60% of the time but I am removing a tree and trimming another to remedy this. The lawn is green, mostly weed free, but a bit thin and in my opinion in need of topdressing and over-seed.

    I wish to add 1/2 inch of top dressing but am not sure what to use. I do not have a machine that will spread the top dressing just have a wheel barrow, shovel and my back. I calculate that I will need 2.5 yards of topdressing but will likely get 3 yards to even up low areas. I understand that some recommend a mixture of loam, sand and peat while others use compost.

    Does anyone have any advice for this situation? I would like to get this done 1 day next week and plan on core aerating the day before.
     
  2. mictrik

    mictrik LawnSite Member
    Posts: 245

    Bump .
     
  3. mictrik

    mictrik LawnSite Member
    Posts: 245

    Bump again
     
  4. phasthound

    phasthound LawnSite Platinum Member
    Posts: 4,560

    Compost, compost, compost.
     
  5. mictrik

    mictrik LawnSite Member
    Posts: 245

    OK got it COMPOST, after calling around a bit I was leaning towards this option since I can find compost but not loam. The soil in my area contains a high percentage of clay should I add some sand to the compost? In a few areas i have noticed that water drainage is not the best. Are there any qualities i should look for in a compost for the lawn?
     
  6. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,081

    The compost should look like dirt and smell like 'good' dirt.
    Loam is 45% clay, 45% sand, 10% silt/OM and what not.

    For clay - a sandy compost would be a good idea.

    Make sure the lawn is dried out b4 you aerate. Plugging wet clay means plugs laying around for a long time.
     
  7. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,298

    Lots of different types of loams, they do not necessarily have those percentages.

    And just get compost. It is not worth your time or money to add sand to it.
     
  8. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 10,081

    Good point. Some 'loams can have 75% clay in it. The important thing to remember is that topsoil will have more clay which is not what you want.

    The area that doesn't drain well, will continue to not drain well, with the addition of compost. How thick it the clay layer, and what is underneath?
     
  9. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 18,298

    That is not necessarily true.
     
  10. mictrik

    mictrik LawnSite Member
    Posts: 245

    I called a place i had bought mulch from a year ago and they have compost at $26.00 yard said he could add a yard of sand for $36.00. I may get 3 yards compost plus 1 sand and use any extra around other parts of the house.

    I plan to overseed afterwards, how soon after topdressing should I seed? I am considering covering the seed with peat. Does this sound like a good way to go?
     

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