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Levelling lawn

I have a week of quarantine and digger. Any advice on how to level a lawn? Am I best to dig the whole lot over and reseed/turf it? It’s quite overgrown and lumpy and quite a large area. 
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  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 49,148
    If you have a digger then you can certainly use it - as long as the ground isn't saturated.
    I couldn't do that here just  now - the ground is like a bog.

    It will really depend on the condition of the soil. You'd need to scrape the higher bits and use those to raise the dips and holes, but you'd then need to dig/fork it over as it will be very compacted. After that, it's a case of raking and levelling to get a good tilth for seed or turf.  
    Ideally, you'd wait a little while as conditions are probably not ideal unless you live somewhere drier and have lighter soil. Using machinery on soggy soil can make things worse. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • it’s sandy soil and quite well drained. There are thick balls of woody grass stalks now that I have strimmed it. I guess these just need to be dug out?
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 49,148
    Are they just grass @GardenerFromScratch?
    Without seeing them I'd say yes, dig them out. They may just be the common rushes you often get in boggy ground, although it seems unlikely if you have sandy soil. Or couch grass, which can be more of a problem. It doesn't have woody stems though. 
    It's worth doing if you can manage it though.  :)

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • Yes, I think it’s just where it has been so overgrown it has formed a clump at the bottom - woody probably not accurate actually. I’ll dig them out. Thanks!
  • @traderneo thanks for posting your questions about a new lawn - I’m in the same situation and the advice in your thread has been really helpful! I’ll wait a few weeks, apply weedkiller, then seed. 

    Just a few pics of how I’m getting on below. 

    Is adding topsoil necessary or can I work with what’s there? We have a sandy slightly alkaline soil with lots of worms and quite a bit of organic matter added over the years, though not recently. 


  • @traderneo thanks for posting your questions about a new lawn - I’m in the same situation and the advice in your thread has been really helpful! I’ll wait a few weeks, apply weedkiller, then seed. 

    Just a few pics of how I’m getting on below. 

    Is adding topsoil necessary or can I work with what’s there? We have a sandy slightly alkaline soil with lots of worms and quite a bit of organic matter added over the years, though not recently. 


    You look like you're in the same boat! Can you send over the digger when you're done please? :)

    It's just the sheer amount of 'stuff' in the ground thats crazy. I'll be doing a spray this weekend I think which should be the last necessary, then wait, wait, wait while the weeds die, then break up the top layer, convert as much as I can into topsoil, top dress and then seed! I was thinking about waiting and doing another dose of weedkiller but I think its starting to get into 'overkill' territory. 

    Keep sending pics! 
  • @traderneo It sounds like it’s worth taking the time to do the extra steps but it’s tempting to just chuck on some seed and crack on with the rest of it!  :D
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 49,148
    Just be aware - if you wish to apply weedkiller, it won't work unless it has something to work on, so you have to wait until there's decent weed growth.
    You'll then need to wait several weeks before seeding, or it won't germinate.
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • @traderneo It sounds like it’s worth taking the time to do the extra steps but it’s tempting to just chuck on some seed and crack on with the rest of it!  :D
    @GardenerFromScratch I know what you mean!!

    To deal with some of the itch I’ve done these ‘test’ pots to see what kind of grass I might expect. 

    I must say the quality of your soil looks way better than mine. Though I might want to see the certificate for your digger operator. :)
  • A long day tomorrow raking up the bramble roots!


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