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New Turf laid but not levelled. please advise

Hi All,

We have just got new turf laid by a contractor, he prepared the ground as we saw him doing it. like he has rotivated the existing soil, then added top soil and sharp sand to prepare the base. Once done, new turf is laid on top of it. 

Now when i walk on the turf i can feel it is not levelled, you could feel load of bumps on your feets. Is it normal being new turf ? atleast in garden design pictures lawns do looks absolutely straight and levelled. Please advise what could we ask him to check and can this be even fixed. Just worried as we have spect loads of money on this but the outcome isnt what we expected. 



  • When was it laid?  You ought not to walk on newly laid turf!

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,585
    Welcome to the Forum. 
    After he rotovated and added soil and sand, did he "firm" it back down ? 
  • Hi, Yes he used the roller after putting the turf. 
    We walked just briefly for couple of things but normally we arent walking on it. Just once a while due to other tasks so had to cross the garden. 
  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,585
    After preparing the soil, they should have firmed it down. Usually by walking with all the weight on the heels . This knocks out any air pockets. After that , it should have been raked level , then the turf laid. No need to take a roller over new turf, bad idea in fact.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 86,163
    edited November 2019
    I would lay boards if I really had to walk over newly laid turf ... particularly in the current wet weather ... but it really shouldn’t be walked on for several weeks ... not until the turf roots have knitted in to the soil and the whole surface has firmed up. 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • Any suggestions if this could be saved now ? or doing this all over is the only solution

  • @glasgowdan is very experienced with lawns ... maybe he will see this and make some suggestions ... or one of the others who are very knowledgeable re lawns. 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • glasgowdanglasgowdan Posts: 632
    edited November 2019
    What size is the area? Is the contractor a local one with a reputation? I'd certainly ask them to lift the turf and do another levelling step. It CAN be extremely difficult to get a new lawn perfectly level, but a decent finish, and over time things should improve
  • Hi Aaron, when I had a new lawn, laid my contractor did a similar process, but before laying the turf he used a heavy roller to compact the soil.
    As it was new we had to keep off it, but after a few months it settled down.
    If you have him back you could ask him to use a roller to compact it down or if you
    want to flatten it down a little yourself lay a plank on the grass and walk on it.
    Just keep moving the plank till you have covered the whole lawn.
    Just to add new lawns are springy till they settle.
  • @glasgowdan -- They have done few jobs locally, around 5-10 miles from us. 
    Total area is 120m2 . My experience isnt great with these guys, given our land level has also not been corrected..the garden is higher from the back, sloping towards our house. They said you need few lorries of top soil to level it up. 
    As you suggested to lift the turf, can this still be done without impacting the turf. 

    @Gardener John -- I will keep the plywoods tomorrow and do as you suggested. In our case yes i saw them doing the roller before laying the turf, but dont think it was done in precision. 
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