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It's fall in the Northwest and everyone want's to do damage control on their lawns.
I do a ton of aerations throughout the year but in the fall I get allot of topdressing requests.

POST AERATION

Top-dress with sand
Top-dress with soil
Top-dress with compost
New product very expensive AXIS (or something like that) a small plastic ball thats hallow like a tine woffal ball. Suppose to go in aeration holes keep them open while still allowing roots to grow through.

My main question is best way to spread in small yards with limited access. I've try ed a pete moss spreader with sand. Destroyed the spreader.
 

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I 'second' that sand question. I understand sand to be used to spread tiny seed or help level turf, but I did not think it had any nutrient value for the soil...

Compost and all that other crap (no pun intended) adds certain levels of nutrients and Humus (micro-organisms) to the soil, but whats with sand on a perfectly level spot like I see above?

Or is there something in the sand?
 

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Originally posted by mtdmaster
Sand will not help clay soil. To improve clay soil, you want to get as much organic material into it as possible. Sand and clay are definitely not a good mix.
Sorry, but I beg to differ - sand (when having the proper and uniform particle size), contributes to aeration porosity, although, marginally.

That said, topdressing with sand should not be used without caution.

When a small or insufficient amount of sand is added, porosity decreases because the soil particals "float" in the soil without adding any additional large pore spaces.

Some other "problems" with sand:

- excessive nutrient leaching - particularly nitrogen and potassium

- Lower microbial activityfor thatch and organic decomposition.

And to answer "why use sand" others have asked - sand is technically a soil component. It is used in rootzone mixes to provide mechanical strength for soils receiving heavy compaction stress (i.e. football fields, golf greens... etc)
 

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Originally posted by Duder
Sorry, but I beg to differ - sand (when having the proper and uniform particle size), contributes to aeration porosity, although, marginally.

That said, topdressing with sand should not be used without caution.

When a small or insufficient amount of sand is added, porosity decreases because the soil particals "float" in the soil without adding any additional large pore spaces.

Some other "problems" with sand:

- excessive nutrient leaching - particularly nitrogen and potassium

- Lower microbial activityfor thatch and organic decomposition.

And to answer "why use sand" others have asked - sand is technically a soil component. It is used in rootzone mixes to provide mechanical strength for soils receiving heavy compaction stress (i.e. football fields, golf greens... etc)
You beg to differ but then list other sand 'problems'? Sand mixed with clay will give you a nice concrete-like soil. If you are dealing with clay, you want to mix in lots of organic matter that will help to loosen up the soil and give you something to grow roots in. Everything I've ever been taught about treating clay has focused on that.

That being said, I understand that sand is pretty good for mixing with a nice loose topsoil. I've seen golfcourse guys talk about mixing sand and soil and compost for topdressing divets, and in a nice loose soil it can help with drainage.
 

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Horse manure. you can spend 500-1000 on a good spreader and save yourself 15 min a lawn but I find that a wheel barrow, rake and shovel is adequate enough. sand if you have the time to make sure that customer schmuckatellie is watering right and not letting it dry (DRY) out. other wist you might as well charge 5 bucks and make it a parking lot. I would recomend what ever the customer says but would do everything in my power to purswead(sp) them to go organic like manure or other organic materials.
 

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Being a transition area, we have the thick thatch, warm season grasses as well, but unless Im mowing a high traffic ball field, the standing suggestions seem to be:

1. Sand can be used with care to keep the ground breathing longer

2. As far as nutrient value, stick to humus rich composts


How about mixing the two? Then maybe 1/2" on an aerated yard?

Kirbys Lawn, do you make any money hiring him?
 
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