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Dingo Soil Cultivator on sod?

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by Shady Brook, Apr 28, 2009.

  1. Shady Brook

    Shady Brook LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 1,517

    I have to redue 14,000 sq foot of lawn. It is bluegrass sod, and the owner wants to go with tall fescue.... I am trying to decide the best way to get this done, and like the idea of a rotodarian style machine like the Soil cultivatior. The grade is perfec, Sprinkler heads are in, and I am afraid the cultivator might fluff up the soil so much that it will elevate me where I don't want to be? The harley rake is an option, but I would have to do something with all that sod. I have thought about round up, mow to the ground, and aerate....slit seed to death.

    I want an excuse for the Dingo...that is why I brought it up.:)

    Thanks for your help.
  2. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

    There is two ways to look at this...........

    If, the existing lawn is showing signs of compaction, lack of nutrients, lack or organic matter, ect..... then a soil cultivator would be the way to go. I've used one two different times, and the screen/drum on the back does help to compact it down some, so it isn't too fluffy. The other advantage is that you can till in any amendments to improve turf quality, and get a perfect seed bed to start with.

    I always roll the lawn after a renovation to get good seed to soil contact, so that will help to compact it back down some.

    If, the lawn is in good shape then your second method would work, and be the easiest.

    Regardless of what method is used, I would suggest that the yard be killed off completely first.

    Also, a strait blend of tall fescue might not look too swell and can be a nightmare to mow. Might want to take that into consideration.
  3. betmr

    betmr LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,663

    I hate Tall Fescue, Big, Fat, Ugly Blades, Clumps all over the place. Why would anyone want to replace Bluegrass with that crap ?!!!
  4. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

  5. 4 seasons lawn&land

    4 seasons lawn&land LawnSite Gold Member
    from NY
    Messages: 3,614

    if you used a harly rake you wouldn't have to do anything with the sod.
  6. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

    A harely rake would make a mess. The soil cultivator will bury the sod and leave a perfect seed bed.
  7. Shady Brook

    Shady Brook LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Indiana
    Messages: 1,517

    Thanks for the reply White Gardens.

    I am not talking KY31 tall fescue. It is true that it is a clumping grass type, but the new stuff is outstanding. It is more disease resistant then the KY, it does not build thatch like KY, it roots deeper then KY, does not need as much water as KY, will not die out in draught like KY.....It is pretty good stuff. Sometimes I will use a 90/10 mix of Turf Type Tall Fescue and Blue grass for a bit of fill.

    The problem with the lawns in my region is that they are garbage clay. Folks roll out sod on this stuff and it instantly has a 3/4" thatch layer in two years. This is the problem with this lawn.

    The laws I have seeded using TTTF have turned out fantastic, and as strange as it may seem, will be thicker, and more visually impressive then a KY lawn imediately beside it.

    I always roll my seeded lawns as well, the Soil Cultivator defineately has my attention.

    Any other feedback would be great.

  8. EVM

    EVM LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 384

    What do you use to roll the lawn with?
  9. Lawnworks

    Lawnworks LawnSite Fanatic
    from usa
    Messages: 5,407

    Either way, you are probably going to have to dig up the sprinkler heads, leave funny pipe sticking up, regrade, and reset sprinkler heads.

    I have never used a soil cultivator. If it truly burries all trash... it might save you debris removal. I usually spray and haul off debris when I use my harley rake.

    Either way, you have a great excuse to rent a dingo!
  10. White Gardens

    White Gardens LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,776

    Just any simple roller. A pull behind drum type works well, and when I use one for seeding, I only fill it 1/3 of the way with water to have some weight, but not too much.

    I have a large rear-tine tiller with a hitch to pull it instead of a lawn tractor. I just swivel the handle out to 45 degrees so I can steer it.

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