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Newbie looking for advice

Hi All, I'm a total newbie to gardening and could do with a little advice. I've just cleared my overgrown garden that was full of brambles/weeds etc, that grass underneath looks awful, it's patchy, has dead roots scattered about, unlevel just a complete mess. I was wondering if it would be possible to lay a couple of layers of that black weed sheet over litterly everything so I have a blank canvas to work with. Once everything is covered can I simple lay a couple of inches of top soil in this then turf it? It's only a small garden, please let me know if this is ok peeps image


  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    Welcome to the forum Johnny, and to gardening.  Both will be fun and rewarding!

    If your garden's not very big and you're young and/or energetic, you'd be better off starting from scratch.  Dig over the whole lot thoroughly, removing all the weeds as you go and adding as much well-rotted manure (stables nearby?) or garden compost (not potting compost) as you can lay your hands on. Rake it all level and then you can start planting/sowing stuff.  Someone else will advise you about design and pretty stuff.

    If you want a lawn, this is a good time to sow it, or (if you're rich enough) lay turf.

    Good luck!

  • CeresCeres Posts: 1,867

    I think you would be better off digging the whole thing over and starting again. That way you can be sure that you have removed as many weeds and their roots as possible and you can ensure that the lawn area is level. You could hire a rotavator for the day if the area is too big to dig by hand (foot?). Weed suppressant membrane with two inches of top soil isn't going to work.

  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    If you want to use a membrane, cover the soil completely and leave it for a year.  Then when you take it up you should find nothing underneath but clean soil, lots of nice earthworms (they are your friends) and a few pathetic white weeds and their roots which you can easily pick up.  But if you want it now, hard graft is required, I'm afraid.

    I wouldn't use a rotovator as it'll chop up the weed roots and rhizomes, and most of the bits will stay in the soil to plague you.  It also kills worms.

  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 26,165

    in the words of Roy Cropper on Corry St. 

    " if you fail to prepare: you should prepare to fail"

    You only have to do it once Johnny, You'll kick yourself in future if something comes back to haunt you.

    Get some friends round , supply beer and a BBQ whilst the weather is still decent and get stuck in.

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