Lawn Help

All,

Have recently moved into a new-build, and when we moved in the quality of the lawn that the developer has laid was terrible. I've managed to recover it to how it looks now (below), but how can I make it even better?  The black patches you see are where I've added 'patch magic' to fill in some gaps, but you can see it still looks - overall - pretty poor.

I have just purchased some 4 in 1, seed, and more patch magic, so am going to do my best to get it looking pristine, but I'm an extremely inexperienced gardener and would therefore welcome all advice.

Many thanks,

Daniel

image

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Posts

  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 11,429

    Looks like it has been  laid badly, probably over lots of half bricks and other rubbish. Water regularly if you want to keep it. You may end up digging the lot up and sorting the soil out and then reseeding. Thats what my brother had to do.  In spring, some weed and feed, or just feed and mow regularly.

    It's not a mess, it's a nature reserve.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 44,427

    Don't use 4 in 1 at this time of year - you'll be setting up a load of new problems for yourself.  It's for spring application.

    Leave your lawn alone now, apart from mowing as needed and as Verdun says, on a Med height cut.  

    If we have a mild winter and it keeps growing, only mow on dry days, never when frost is forecast. 

    The real work will start in the spring. image

    In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt ... Margaret Atwood
  • PalaisglidePalaisglide Posts: 3,219

    DFW that is a typical new build lawn, builders remove all top soil down to clay then during building it all gets compacted often with rubble buried in holes. Once up the gardeners come in spread a few inches of topsoil on the pan then roll out the lawn which is normally a general hardy type rather than bowling green. If it is hot and does not get enough water it tends to curl and in places die off. I watched it happen around here as they built on the old market gardens taking all the good soil away and selling it as part of their perks. Some give up and it becomes the children's playground some try too hard with chemicals others take it all up and start again, it is heart breaking.

    Forget the four in one take the advice given by Verdun and Dove leave it to over winter then start again in spring. A mild wet winter would help it recover from the stress and build up strength for next year. Watch it during wet weather as the hard pan under the lawn can stop drainage, if water pools on the lawn it will need some drainage sorting out. The bad news is it will never be a bowling green the good news it can with care become a reasonable lawn. Spring feed and weed read the instructions on the packet and less is better, water it in well then wait six weeks and do it again, meanwhile keep the blades of the mower up, I keep my lawns at one inch, most lawns are not level so you end up shaving parts if the blades are set low. All this is probably not what you want to hear but that is gardening and over many years I have learned to make the best of what we have, perfection is an illusion.

    Frank.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 44,427

    Frank - I said don't  use the 4 in 1 now - just like you I said leave it until Spring  ... so did Verdun image

    You said more or less the same as us.   

    Last edited: 16 September 2016 10:35:15

    In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt ... Margaret Atwood
  • PalaisglidePalaisglide Posts: 3,219

    Dove, yes you did say DONT and I believe I repeated that. I always respect what you and Verdun say in answer to questions by new gardeners and did not query your answer about the four in one. Having seen the disappointment of some of the new Buy people around here I try to give advice for a fair decent lawn rather than a promise of wondrous turf as seen in pictures the builders use to sell houses. We have solid brick clay under us so the normal way of six inches of topsoil and roll out turf does not work, it becomes a pond in wet weather, as I said heartbreaking. Hope I did not offend you in some way.

    Frank

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 44,427

    Frank image  my mistake image  I didn't see the word 'take' in the first sentence of your second paragraph.  Mea culpa - should have put my glasses on.

    image

    I'll get back to making the mint jelly 

    In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt ... Margaret Atwood
  • DFWDFW Posts: 22

    All,

    Excellent advice, all gratefully received.

    Therefore my plan for the coming 6 months is simply:-

    a) Continue to mow whilst grass grows, but raise mower to 'medium' cutting height (it was on the lowest level, hence why the grass looks so poor)

    b) Hold off on the 4 in 1 and apply this in the spring.

    c) Give it time!

    It's true I want everything NOW, but it's also true that this lawn will never be a bowling green. I knew this already as I've two young kids.....

    One other question - should I put down seed in areas I consider as having poor grass coverage (such as the front left of the lawn, as you see in the picture) ??

    Thanks again!

    Daniel

  • PalaisglidePalaisglide Posts: 3,219

    Verdun, Perfection is in the eye of the beholder, my Mother said I was a perfect idiot when I said I was joining the army, at that moment in time was I indeed perfect apart from in Mothers eye's? People have said to me "that was perfect" in my mind it was far from perfect you know you could do better. Watching Video's of my grandchildren doing their Medal Dances in Modern Ballroom dancing I was thinking that is perfect then remembered my own experience at their age and always the thought I could have done that better. Perfection Verdun, Sir, (I think you did mention shaving) is an affliction you climb up to that one moment you look in the shaving mirror then it is all downhill.

    Dove I just made the same mistake not reading a subject correctly, we are all susceptible.

    Frank.

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