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Growing grass paths...

Zoomer44Zoomer44 Posts: 3,264

I want to grow grass paths on the allotment. There are three sections planned to grow it but none are quite ready.

The first area has been dug over and one part has muck on it with a black plastic covering. The other part was dug over and cardboard was laid with muck on top. I'm thinking of  planting  3 - 4 dwarf fruit tree's in these area's and the plan is to grow grass between the tree's with an area of bare soil around the tree's so I can mulch each year, real lazy allotmenteeringimage.

Q is do I just dig the muck in, level off, firm up the ground and scatter the seeds? Can it really be that simple or will the ground be too rich for the seed?

The third area is compact soil with ocassional weeds like dock and dandilion. This isn't a big area and could be dug over in a couple of hours. Would I then just rake over, firm up the ground and sow the seeds?

Just to add to the mix, I've been told now is the time to sow grass seed but I'm in the NW and although it's been warm and sunny for the past couple of days, there have been some cold mornings, and the nights can be chilly. Have I missed the window of opportunity to sow grass seed?

     

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  • Hi zoomer image



    Most allotment soil is very rich, so i wouldnt worry too much, as long as you want grass and not a lawn, its pretty easy, just sprinkle the seed and keep moist, remember its going to be a long time before you can mow it, also grass paths churn up very quickly in spring when you are very busy, so you might need to get one of those little wooden roll things. image



    I can only speak from sowing grass seed in the garden, but it seems quite happy to grow as long as its not frosty image
  • We aren't allowed grass paths at my allotment site

  • Hello Zoomer, saw the post last night and thought about it. grass as with any seed does not need rich soil, imagine sowing your spring seeds part soil part sand part grit, a grass patch needs digging levelling compressing then sowing and raking in and yes now is the time to do it. You would need at least a two foot clear ring around the fruit trees and do not forget the tree roots and grass will fight for water. Most allotments have skinny paths, either wood edges and gravel or you can get one foot by two foot slabs, easily laid and permanent though can be moved if required. Just a thought, as another poster says grass has to be maintained edged and on an allotment weeded, all something to think about when there is never enough time for everything in a garden. Good luck what ever you decide.

    Frank.

  • WelshonionWelshonion Posts: 3,114
    Grass paths also get muddy and slippery if you use them in wet weather. They have to be cared for, ie. strimmed or mown, and they get weeds in them, and they are a good place for slugs and snails to hang out.
  • Zoomer44Zoomer44 Posts: 3,264

    All good advise, thank you, sorry if I don't reply individually.

    The committee are split on grass paths so we can have then, the choice I face is weeds on bare soil or grass. The bricks on site have been recycled into paths running across the site.

    Q...I thought about not being able to walk on the seeded area's before about Feb or March time, would this be about right or would it be longer? 

    I've not got the fruit tree's yet so this bit was trickier as I'll need to walk on it to plant out but could pot then up at home and wait till Feb/March to plant out.

    Thanks, Frank will mark out a section round where the tree's are planned to be planted. I was thinking of just a ft, clearly not big enough.

    Having weeds in the grass is expected, me thought I'd get a strimmer, battery operated or manual mower. Jury's out on that one. Q is which would be best, me thinks a mower as it's quicker. if the blades are kept sharp and I do have hand shears and an edger to define the paths. 

     There are slow worms on the site although they don't eat enough slugs to keep the population down image.    

    Q After sowing when would it need to be cut, would it be March/April and can it ghen be walked on?    

  • Hi Zoomer.  Will the paths be perfectly flat?  I'd so could try a cylindrical push mower (c£40 from argos). Don't take up much space, no need for power. On the down side, can't use when wet and harder work - but if you're at he allotment regularly then can use on dry days and assume as just a path there not much to do?

  • Zoomer44Zoomer44 Posts: 3,264

    Slightly off topic, well actually alot, missed you on the weather thread Frank, I think we kept it alive...image...I don't get up to the NE now other than on leisure trips and enjoyed the banter.

    Hope you are well...happy gardening.  

  • Glad some body missed me whilst I had my NHS holiday, all well now and back cooking housework and some gardening. The weather from the North Sea has been atrocious all week, fine day yesterday and a lock down today, had the lights on to write.

    Methinks you need to reassess your allotment paths though, you do not need more work than the growing section will provide, grass paths probably a step too far.

    Frank.

  • Zoomer44Zoomer44 Posts: 3,264

    Frank - nice to hear you are on the mend image - I'm thinking weed limitation with the grass and mowing seems alot easier than back breaking weedingimage

    I started an allotment thread and a poster on there has suggested wood chip paths but there would be the expense of getting the wood chip and weed surpressent.

    I've already purchased seed too. I was thinking to start with...grow grass around the fruit tree's which will be dwarf stock, so not too much shade and hopefully enough light to grow grass rather than watch weeds growing on bare soil....and as for the paths... experiment and sow seeds down one section of the plot for paths, I can always rethink if it gets too much.

    Supernoodle, the paths will be level but on a slight slope and alittle wider than a wheel barrow.. me thinks I might need something a little bit more heavy duty than the argo mower but what do other posters think... 

      

  • I have grass paths at home in the veg patch, well I am going to re do it with new turf and stepping stones stops the squirrels digging, make sure you level ground off then sow the seeds and stamp in the ground - September is a good time to sow the grass seeds

    Think you do the first cut about 5cms high which could be a month later - just don't let the grass get too high before you cut it   

    Idea for the fruit tree - plant a pot in the ground about the same size as the fruit tree roots would be then you can sow the grass seeds around the area needed and take plant pots out when ready to plant the trees

    Go for it you have the seeds

    Hampshire Gardener
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