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Lawn leveling cost.

Discussion in 'Turf Renovation' started by gulfjoe, Feb 12, 2012.

  1. gulfjoe

    gulfjoe LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,638

    That is what i am thinking of doing. From what I have read and seen online.

    If i have an area with a 3" low spot i would fill about 1/2-1" sand top soil mix, and let it settle and let the grass make its way through, then reapply sand top soil mix a few weeks later.

    Is that kind of how it works with out gettting to technical with it?
  2. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    That is pretty much as technical as it gets.
    Might want to consider compost as well.
  3. clydebusa

    clydebusa Inactive
    Messages: 1,660

    I assume you are stuck with that. If you are and you are going to do it yourself the cheapest way to take care of it would be to buy a roller and start rolling. When the grass starts growing this spring I would get a load of sandy soil and start filling in the low areas. Water good this coming year to establish the grass. It will take a season or two but it will eventually come out. When you mow I would mulch.

    Good Luck.
  4. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,315

    Bring the soil up to field capacity, roll it out best you can, then start filling the low spots with a topsoil (sandy loam with compost would be ideal). As you have already discovered, if you do this incrementally you won't kill the existing turf. Beyond that, research how to irrigate properly. Many of those depressions look to be the result of walking on an extremely wet soil (i.e. mud).
  5. gulfjoe

    gulfjoe LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,638

    There has been pretty much zero irragation going on. Sod was laid in december and we have had at least 1 good rain shower a week since then sometimes more. That area that is very lumpy does not get much sun and it does feel muddy underneath. the products that you speak of. would it be best/cost effective to have loads delivered? What exactly would i ask for when I talk to the "Dirt Yard"
  6. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,315

    It would be far more cost effective to get your topsoil in bulk. That said, unless you have somewhere to store it, it won't do you much good to get more than you can use in one shot. You won't really know how much you need until you roll it out. Keep in mind, depending on the depth of the depressions once you have rolled it out, this method of "leveling" could take 1-2 years to get it right.

    Also, word of warning. Some vendors sell a bagged "topsoil" that is worthless for leveling, if you decide to go the bag route. It needs to be primarily sand based, and the difference is clear in the weight of the bag.
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2012
  7. RigglePLC

    RigglePLC LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 13,072

    Why not roll up the sod. Do about 20 by 30 ft section. Rake smooth (adding a bit of fill as needed). Relay sod. Keep moist until sod has rooted again. Topdressing with sand as needed. Add a few extra rolls of sod if any are destroyed. Give it extra care, water and feeding during the subsequent 12 months. Do it now as sod will be almost dormant. It will grow fast and root down quick when the soil temp gets over about 70.

    How much has the sod rooted down so far?
  8. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,315

    I think ideally I would roll up an entire bounded section, till, regrade, roll it, water settle until the soil is at a relative uniform bulk density, then regrade where necessary. This however will likely negate reusing the turf.

    Anyone want to bet on this being sandy topsoil on top of a compacted clay with no mixing at all?
  9. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    That is what I would do, but it has already been ruled out as an option, for whatever reason.
    That would also provide for an opportunity to bust up those shoe-shaped clunks of 'pottery-like' soil bases.
  10. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Or no sand at all.

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