Discussion in 'Organic Lawn Care' started by DeepGreenLawn, Apr 28, 2009.

  1. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,372

    What are your thoughts on sanding? I put some sand down for a guy that had a tree removed and wanted the new sod and the existing turf to be more "level." Tiny job that took just a few shovels... I had so much left over I just took it and put it on my yard for the fun of it... didn't figure it could hurt anything and maybe help it get a little more level as I like it nice and short.

    It is river sand so I thought it might have some good micronutrients in it too? Sediment HAS to be good for something... HAS to be... if nothing else it will help with compaction as I just aerated not too long ago and there are still many holes in the ground... I left the other side of my driveway unsanded, tiny strip between my driveway and my neighbors, to see how much of a difference I can see... just for fun...

    Is this something you would consider "organic" or "sustainable"? I am unsure the reason they dredge the lake here, I know the lake is manmade so maybe to keep the levels proper? Looks like good stuff though, curious as to what your thoughts are... something tells me I am about to get a lashing...:(
  2. growingdeeprootsorganicly

    growingdeeprootsorganicly LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 766

    it's one part of the puzzle if you will and i would say it's safe too say it's sustainable.

    to use it only really depends on your situation deepgreen

    like say ur working a soil that need's more drainage and the other factors are good already
  3. cgaengineer

    cgaengineer LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 15,778

    I have heard sanding is good and bad from many different people. I know a fellow on lawnsite and also a friend of mine who sands his own lawn and he has the most beautiful lawn in his neighborhood (you know who you are). I plan to sand my lawn but I would like to hear peoples opinions on sanding clay soils...I am sure its much easier to spread sand then manure thats for sure.
  4. ICT Bill

    ICT Bill LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,115

    Sand based sports fields are the norm, almost every golf green you have ever seen is also sand based. Sports turf managers top dress with sand almost exclusively

    Sand based turf also has a term called "hot spots" these are areas where the nutrients and water move through the soil profile too quickly. So too much of a good thing can be ..............well........too much!
  5. Kiril

    Kiril LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 18,335

    And for good reason .... which does not extend into landscapes.

    IMO, if you need to level/grade then use a sandy loam (eg. topsoil), otherwise use compost.
  6. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,372

    This sand seems really good and soil based, so I am happy with it, it isn't your white sand that you see contractors using. I don't plan on using it much, just had some left overs. My lawn is already pretty level, so I thought it couldn't hurt. I plan on doing more compost than anything... maybe mixing this sand with compost? I can't see it hurting anything by any means unless it is over used like you guys said... if I needed that much sand I would just pull in the top soil and resod/seed...

    I can tell you one thing... it seemed to pull the moisture right out of the air, it was wet from 6pm last night and throught this morning...
  7. ICT Bill

    ICT Bill LawnSite Platinum Member
    Messages: 4,115

    In sports turf Organic Matter is almost a bad word. I have spoken to folks that think when organic matter readings get to 4% it is time to rip it up and start over. They attribute OM to poor drainage and disease

    "but the times they are a changing" Bob Dylan

    I agree with Kiril, if you are going to take the time to top dress do it with compost
  8. bicmudpuppy

    bicmudpuppy LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,781

    I've heard a lot of guys try to equate OM to thatch as well. It depends on a lot of variables. To say SOM is good or bad as a blanket statement won't work with sand based sports turf. There are a lot of push up clay greens out there that would benefit from a much higher SOM content. On "healthy" turf, I can't see ever finding fault with a higher SOM, but if the turf isn't healthy, then you look at all the variables. Sometimes heavy aerification with core removal and sand top dressing is the easiest answer, and the result is a lower SOM.

    Back to the OP. I would discourage top dressing with sand on non-sandy soils. In sports turf, the amount of "fines" and the degradation of the top dressing becomes important to prevent sealing the soil. To many fines, applied to what had been a very coarse mix, can seal a soil very quickly. Sand applied to clay resembles concrete unless your applying enough to drastically change the soil texture.
  9. DeepGreenLawn

    DeepGreenLawn LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,372

    is sand and silt from the river bed interchangeable? Do they have the same effects as to what Bic was saying? It seems I have seen or heard the concrete statement before...
  10. Smallaxe

    Smallaxe LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,082

    Good for you, DGL. :)

    :laugh: If you see if 'setting up' like a piece of sidewalk... water in some post kwik... :laugh:

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