Calling all professionals, home owners, any body with renovation experience!

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by BlazersandWildcats2009, Aug 24, 2013.

  1. agrostis

    agrostis LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,545

    X2 !!!

    You don't want to lay the sod like that, you will regret it. I've seen yard's like that, they looked terrible. The analogy to railroad tie's is exactly right, and with slow growing zoysia it will take 3 year's to get that effect. If you want to save money, do the front yard and then wait on the back. Believe me on this. Think about sprig's first, at least it will be even.
  2. BlazersandWildcats2009

    BlazersandWildcats2009 LawnSite Member
    from Houston
    Messages: 197

    Appreciate both of you. I can clearly understand how it could be unlevel. And highly regretted in the future anyway. I am thinking the best route for me is going to be rolls considering my front lawn is a fairly good size. Far from huge, but bigger than your average neighborhood lawn.
  3. BlazersandWildcats2009

    BlazersandWildcats2009 LawnSite Member
    from Houston
    Messages: 197

    Hey I wanted to update agnostics and everyone that was helping me out and let you know my status. I also had a few quick questions if you guys could help me I would really appreciate it once again!

    The sod was paid for today. Note, I mentioned earlier we have a shade tree in the front yard. I cleared the lawn down to bare soil over the weekend when I was speaking with you guys. The shade tree, I pruned it and took out all the lower branches. I got a Friskers pole tree trimmer and got everything to half way up the tree. I then climbed half way up the tree along with the pole and cleared out a lot of limbs and quite a bit of greenery so we could get some sunlight in our yard. I must say it paid off. Note, before the tree cleaning the whole lawn was good and shaded. Now in the morning we have several hours of sunlight hitting one side. Afternoon getting several hours of sunlight on the other side.

    Onto the sod. It's paid for as of today, delivery is Saturday morning. We decided to go with Palisades Zoysia. I questioned the heck out of them about the freshness. They ensured they would cut it for me friday evening and deliver first thing Saturday morning. I'm getting it directly from the farm as you directed, however I will still most definitely be inspecting it thoroughly.

    Today, I had a truck load of Chocolate Loam delivered. It appears to be filtered and seems to be some clean soil.
    I will also be purchasing some Starter Turf Fertilizer 24-24-4 ratio. Does that sound right? I was told I wanted something with a high middle number?

    Off to the questions, I have a gallon of some Root Stimulator that I've used for transplanting tree's in the past that seemed to do very well. I was thinking about it today, and thought well building strong roots is exactly what you want, correct? So I did a quick search and found that several people use Root Stimulator with sod. What is you guys input on this? If I use it, should I spray it on the prepared soil with the fertilizer?

    Also, where does soil activator come into place? Should I spray before or after sodded, or both? I was thinking about adding the soil activator before I do my final raking and prepping of the soil.

    Last question, I know I need to roll or tamp the sod after the initial watering following the laying of the sod. After laying the fertilizer, would you suggest lightly tamping the soil with the fertilizer before laying the sod? I know you want the surface rather smooth right? Or just level and raking?

    Thank you very much for both your time and input and we appreciate the great advice. Keep in mind were opening to suggestions so feel free to correct me if I'm wrong, there's obviously a reason I'm here asking you guys the questions!
  4. foreplease

    foreplease LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,062

    You are on the right track. Presumably, the sod you get will be very healthy. The root stimulator and soil activator ides scare me a little. Might be more suitable for someone who has done a lot of this work. It just seems like something that could go terribly wrong at the worst time. Your root stimulator is the fine job of prepping the soil you did along with a hose or sprinklers.

    Laying sod is hard, heavy work. Try to get pallets set in different places so you do not have to carry rolls so far. Do not walk I. The raked area where you are about to lay sod. Also, work off of a half sheet of plywood you can easily ,ove along as you work so your just completed rows are not full of knee depressions.

    Good thinking on the tree trimming. There is no reason this should not turn out well if you take your time and work carefully. I like to keep a 5 gallon pail half full of my soil mix on the plywood with me. Also a sharp knife and a drywall knife for last minute squaring up the area under the next roll you will be setting in place.
  5. agrostis

    agrostis LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,545

    I'm glad you pruned that tree, the more sunlight you can provide the better. After this do all your pruning during the coldest part of the year. That's when the tree is dormant and can handle pruning the best. I would suggest that you only lay sod up to the drip line of the canopy of the tree. Tree's suck up the water and grass and tree's just don't mix well. A picture of this is needed though, i really can't make this call without seeing it.

    Starter fertilizer is what you need and that analysis sound's right. You need to start thinking of fertilizer in term's of pound's of nitrogen per 1000 square feet per year. The three number's on a fertilizer bag are nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, in that order. A good spreader is essential, if kept clean, dry and indoor's a quality spreader can last 25 year's.

    I would save the root stimulator for tree's and shrub's. sod straight from the farm is just about maxed out on fertilizer. It would help a little bit it just probably isn't needed. If you do use it, i would spray it on the sod, otherwise it might evaporate before you can get the sod on top of it.

    I have never used a soil activator, i don't know what to tell you, but that sound's like something you apply to the soil before you lay the sod.

    The whole point of tamping or rolling sod after it is laid is to get good sod to soil contact and to get rid of air pocket's. You can do this if you want, but a good watering will do the same thing. I guess the thinner the sod the more i would be tempted to tamp. It's just as important to have tight seam's as good sod to soil contact.

    A good raking is all that is required. Have you had a real soil test? This might be important. Do you know what the pH of the soil is? You should know this. Don't forget to keep that sod WET for the first few week's. Take before and after picture's. Good luck.
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2013
  6. BlazersandWildcats2009

    BlazersandWildcats2009 LawnSite Member
    from Houston
    Messages: 197

    Hey buddy thanks for all the valuable information! Sorry I've been unable to check back to the forums. I recently started back at school and am already so far behind, I'm playing catchup! Anyway, everything is planted, I'm going to start a new thread so I can get advice on the uptake now if you want feel free time chime in with your valuable information!

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