Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by Johnson LCO, Mar 27, 2008.

  1. Johnson LCO

    Johnson LCO LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 336

    I usually dont do any landscaping, just mowing and sometimes mulching. Well, I have had a wealthy customer ask me to do overseeding on his entire front yard. What steps should I follow? He said he just wants soil and seed put down, no aerating or dethatching. Can someone explain in depth, step by step, how I should do this. What tools should I use, how much topsoil (depth, formula I can use to determine yards needed) and what should I charge? Any help is greatly appreciated.
  2. JNyz

    JNyz LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,087

    First off try to talk him into doing it in the fall. The results will be better. If you do it now I would first top dress it with a thin layer of soil. Different lawns and grass types will need differents amounts of soil. How big is the lawn? You would just use a shovel and throw the soil over the existing lawn, if it clumps in some areas just spread it out with a leaf rake. Overseed with a tall fescue. Just charge him your hourly rate and mark up your material 35%.
  3. Johnson LCO

    Johnson LCO LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 336

    I tried, but he is admant about having it done this week. Someone mentioned breaking the ground in bare spots, should I do this with a hard rake before I put down soil? How thick should the soil be? I had heard it should be between .25 and .5 inches thick. Is there a formula that could tell me how many yards I need based on applying it on X square feet? I am going to measure it tommorow but he wants an estimate of how much it will cost and I am clueless. I want his business but dont want to work for free. Thanks for the input.
  4. lawns Etc

    lawns Etc LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,277

    If you are not sure 1 yd of topsoil will cover about 250 sq ft 1\2 " thick and thats more than thick enough as long as he has a decent yard to start with. As far as prep rent a power rake and dig up the bare spots real good put some lime and starter fert and seed and youll be fine just make sure that no Pre Emergence Fert has been done yet or you cant seed for 4 months and make sure that if a Pre Em is going to go down that only Tupersan is used as it will not affect the seed
  5. Johnson LCO

    Johnson LCO LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 336

    Thanks for the reply. I have never used a power rake before. He has very few bare spots to dig up, it seems almost unnecessary to overseed the lawn. Do I really need to rent a powerrake or can it be done without it?
  6. Lawncop26

    Lawncop26 LawnSite Member
    Messages: 90

    Why dosent he want you to aerate ?, by aerating, you will most likely get way better results. You said he was wealthy so $$$ might not be an issue, somebody may be feeding him bad info.The best way I can think of , without seeing the lawn of course would be to aerate, topdress, and seed. If the lawn is thick now, just broadcasting seed may not work as well as you hope, by aerating a already thick lawn and then seeding would be best.
  7. Johnson LCO

    Johnson LCO LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 336

    So from what I gather, here is what I should do:
    1. Fertilize and water the lawn.
    2. Wait a few days then dig up bare spots, look for grubs, signs of disease
    3. Put down seed with broadcast spreader.
    4. Topdress with .25 to .5 inches of topsoil and rake, to mix in seeds

    Is this not the correct way of doing it? I bleive he doesnt want it aerated because it was already done recently. He is one of those people that wants what he wants when he wants it so I am not trying to look like I am pushing something on him. Any tips?

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