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Preparing poor quality soil for sod


LawnSite Member
Greenwood, SC
I am interested in laying sod in the area around our newly poured drive way in our front yard, but have a question regarding preparation. There is a lot of pieces of concrete (overflow, residual, etc...)in the soil and I'm not sure of the best way to get that out and still have enough soil left over. They excavated the entire yard so the soil is already mixed (even though it's been a few months).

Pictures can be found here:


LawnSite Bronze Member
Piscataway, NJ
That is exactly what you need to do. I make a 3' by about 5' frame and cover it with 1/4" hardware cloth. Stand it on an angle and trow shovel fulls of soil on it. The finer particles go through and the junk slides down.

Or you could just get out your Garden Rake and rake the stones out, put in a little top soil and sow some seed. Do you want to Rake, or Dig? That's your choice. Looks to me that you need to add some soil there anyway you do it.
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LawnSite Member
Greenwood, SC
I went with the rake route and raked the junk out of both areas. They are fairly free of rocks and debris as of now. I plan to till both areas this weekend to get it ready for seed/fertilizer and some top soil. Two questions: do i need to use top soil and fertilizer or just one? And if I need top soil, should I put it out before or after tilling?

I've been looking around for the best seed for my conditions and found this mixed bag from Pennington. I'm starting this lawn completely from scratch so I'm not sure if this is the best to use but it looked like it was good for high shade and some reviews on the internet said it was good. Any other recommendations would be appreciated.


I'll post more pictures this evening of my progress.


LawnSite Platinum Member
You won't have any problems with the rocks just the leaves and sticks. Hell every yard in FL has enough concrete to build another house under the sod. Just pick up what you can and be done.