Creating The Perfect Lawn

A flawless lawn starts small. The creation of green carpets, regardless of their size, shape, style and even the type of grass mixture used, requires a lot of effort. And it all starts with preparing the soil and following all the rules of lawn breakdown. This process is not as difficult as many people think, but lapses at the emerald carpeting stage always lead to big problems. To get a flawless lawn with the classic seeding method, the beginning must also be flawless. Diligence and careful planning are the main ingredients for success.

Creating the perfect lawn
Creating the perfect lawn

Content:

  • Stages of lawn creation
  • Planning the timeline
  • Preparing the base for the emerald carpet
  • Selecting lawn seeds
  • Creating the lawn
  • Care for the lawn after seeding

Stages of lawn creation

The lawn creation process is not so simple and unambiguous. And it is certainly not limited to selecting and sowing seeds. From a technical point of view, the establishment of new lawns is one of the most stringent and complex in the arrangement of decorative objects. Conduct it in several stages, each of which is equally important for the final result:

  1. Preparation of the site for the lawn. This stage, in turn, consists of two stages: soil preparation and its pre-treatment.
  2. Preparing the site for the immediate sowing.
  3. Selecting seeds.
  4. Sowing or laying the lawn.
  5. Care until the first mowing.
  6. Regular lawn care.

Schedule

To get a beautiful and dense green carpet, its preparation must be planned in advance and the first two stages of work. To do this, you first need to think about when you want to sow your lawn grasses. May or late April are always considered the best time to establish a lawn - a time when the soil remains moist, there is still no drying heat and the sun will spare young shoots. But with regular moisture, lawns can be laid until August, especially if we are talking about small emerald areas and decorative carpets.

Creating the perfect lawn
Preparing the site for sowing lawn

Preparing the base for the emerald carpet

The first and most important thing you should think about when you want to make a new lawn in the garden - the right choice of site. Lawns in the classic sense is only laid out in sunny areas. But there is a much more precise definition: A classic lawn can only be planted in areas where buildings, large plants and flowering arrangements provide shade for up to four hours a day.

Today the number of hardier grasses is increasing and many grass mixtures can grow in semi-shade in addition to sunny areas. Almost all manufacturers also include special mixtures of more shade-tolerant grasses in their products. Information on the shade-loving components of the future lawn should be looked for on the packaging. But this is not all the parameters on which you need to think:

  • Lawns spread on flat or nearly flat areas
  • for the green carpet will not suit the place of accumulation of rain and melt water
  • No neglected, undeveloped soils that can not improve just work with soil, if the need to cultivate and bring in order.

And it will be easy to correct the quality of the soil just the same. Even for heavy clay, stony areas, and sandy soil, the soil structure can be dramatically changed. It is also relatively easy to correct its reaction. You can improve the soil for lawns by the same principle as for any other ornamental objects - by deep digging and additives. Actually, the correction and treatment of the soil is the next step in preparing the site for the lawn. But it should not start with the application of fertilizers at all:

  1. Carefully remove from the site for the lawn all debris, stones, rubble, weeds. You can finally cope with it during the digging.
  2. Cultivate the soil to a depth of at least 25 cm. During the first digging remove the remaining stones and rhizomes of weeds.
  3. Compound the soil with additives correcting its structure: in very heavy soils - sand, in light ones - clay soil, etc.
  4. Distribute organic fertilizers on the surface. It is better to use compost as the main means of increasing the fertility of the soil for lawns. Do not apply mineral fertilizers at this stage: they are incorporated into the soil much later.
  5. Recoat the soil.

This soil improvement and preparation of the site for the lawn should be carried out in advance. The minimum period is 1 month before the beginning of the leveling of the soil. But the ideal strategy is to prepare the site for the green carpet much earlier, from the fall for spring and summer planting.

So much closer to the date of creation of the lawn itself should be the next stage of work -  the introduction of mineral fertilizers and leveling the site. Preparation for the immediate sowing includes:

  1. Putting of mineral fertilizers of complex type (special mixtures for lawns or full mineral fertilizers of universal type). It is necessary to carry out such fertilization a week or 10 days before sowing the seeds. Fertilizer is spread evenly over the whole plot and incorporated into the soil with a simple rake. The soil on the plot is not recultivated.
  2. Primary leveling of the soil. It can be carried out both after the embedding of mineral fertilizers, and in 1-2 days, but not before sowing (soil must "cure" at least 4-5 days). The method of levelling should be chosen according to the size of the lawn and the means available. This can be done with a shovel, a rake, a tiller or a power tiller. When leveling it is particularly important to break up all clods of earth, leaving a homogeneous and loose soil with fractions of a few millimeters. The final leveling procedure is carried out by the simplest means - a large flat board. It is simply dragged over the plot, coping even with invisible elevations or depressions, achieving an ideal flatness of the site. If the weather is dry, the site must be watered 2-3 days before sowing the seeds.
Creating the perfect lawn
Garden grass seeds

Seeding for lawns

Get the right type of lawn and perfect denseness with any grass seeds will not work: the quality of the carpet starts with the quality of the seed. And knowing your lawn type is not enough when choosing grass seed mixes.

Lawns are divided into three main types:

  • parterre, exclusively decorative, not intended for walking and requiring complex care;
  • sports, which withstand heavy loads;
  • garden and park, which withstand moderate loads, do not require strict care and selection of grass, like sports.

Garden and park lawns that are most often laid out in gardens and are also called ordinary lawns, always use the grass mixture - a combination of different species and varieties of grass, together creating a denser and more stable coverage.

A common grass that grows everywhere and grass for the lawn, even if it is about related species of cereals - concepts are radically different. Lawn grass and grass mixtures are fundamentally different from their wild relatives: They do not produce a scratchy and hard uneven carpet, but a gentle, velvety covering which is unique in feel and density. This velvety quality is due to the much finer and finer leaves.

Density of lawns does not depend on self-sowing, all plants without exception are densely bushy perennials and form a remarkably dense turf, through which no weeds can grow. All lawn grasses are "selected" plants which have been selected through long breeding and are rather limited in number (in contrast to wild grasses). The main ones for lawns have always been and still are today:

  • trampling-resistant, slow-growing bluegrass;
  • dense and dense in lawn fescue;
  • sod-forming ryegrass.

And almost always lawn grass is a variety of plants with improved characteristics, which have significantly different main parameters.

When choosing a variety mix, it is necessary to carefully evaluate the characteristics of grass mixtures:

  1. First decide the type of lawn, and then evaluate the presented range of seeds. Choose proven manufacturers familiar with the quality of your seeds or other products. Rely on the provision of information about the included grasses and their benefits, on the completeness of information about lawn characteristics.
  2. Select options that suit your location and lawn size.
  3. Evaluate the manufacturer's recommended soil type for compatibility with your site.
  4. Check the information on the desired seeding method (some grass mixes can only be sown with a planter or there may be other restrictions on use).
Creating the perfect lawn
Turf care after planting

Turf creation

Sowing grass mixes requires the right choice not so much of time but of weather. You can only seed a lawn when the weather is dry and if the topsoil is dry and 2-3 days have passed since it was moistened. Lawns should not be sown into the ground after precipitation or during rainfall. Windy weather and extreme heat should also be avoided.

The process of laying or sowing classic lawns does not start with the seeds, but with tamping down the soil. The soil on the site immediately prior to sowing it is rolled using a special roller weighing about 100-150 kg, or a large board that is laid horizontally, passing her, and then shifted across the site, tamping the soil with its weight. After tamping it will be impossible to walk on the lawn (in urgent cases the feet are tied to the planks).

The seeding process itself is not so difficult. For seeding the lawn, it is most convenient to use special planters. When working manually it is difficult to achieve homogeneity of seeding, and so the grass can be sown only on small lawns. The density of seed sowing is specified for each type of grass mixture per 1 square meter. On average, it varies between 20 and 40 grams.

To make it easier to achieve perfect uniformity, the lawn area should be divided into square metres (if a very large lawn is concerned, it should be divided into one metre strips along the lawn). Accordingly with the number of "squares", measure the number of portions of seed and weigh them. The seeds are sown not all over the plot, but in squares.

Sowing is always "overlapping": first half of the seeds by spreading along the plot, and the second half by moving across the plot. When dividing into strips over large areas in the first place sow marked longitudinal strips, capturing 5-10 cm of the adjacent strip, then marked areas on similar meter strips across and repeat the sowing with an "overlap".

  1. Perforcing them into the soil by fan rake, taking care that the penetration does not exceed 1 cm
  2. Soaking the top with a layer of sieved soil or sand thickness of 0,5 cm
  3. Repeating the rolling, but with lighter weight of roller, slightly pressing the seeds into the soil;

Complete seeding by obligatory watering: from sprinklers or a watering can with a hand-held sprayer to ensure uniform soil moisture.

Take care of the lawn after sowing

To germinate the seeds you need time:  on average from 15 to 20 days. And from this time the proper care of green lawns begins.

To protect the lawn from birds and soil drying out it is better to cover the whole area with a fleece. It should be lightweight, not interfere with the breathing of the soil and evaporation of moisture. Such a cover is not necessary, but only desirable. Take it off when the seedlings appear, as soon as possible.

You need moisture for the germination of seeds. If the weather is dry and hot, then the area even before the appearance of the lawn will have to start watering. A fine sprinkler on a sprinkler system and sprinklers is ideal. But if you are watering your future lawn by hand, be sure to avoid a strong jet, use the shallowest sprinklers possible.

Don't rush to walk over your lawn, mow it, or start standard maintenance. Young grass needs to be allowed to grow, and yes, the initial stage will require a not-so-common procedure - rolling. Dense and closely spaced shoots lift the soil, and it must be compacted. Rolling should only be done when the grass has risen by approx. 5 cm. The lightest roller should be used for this purpose.

You do not have to fear the appearance of "crumpled" grass: it will recover in literally a few days and again create an impermeable cover. And only after the lawn has grown to 9-10 cm (not before a month after sowing), conduct the first high mowing. Do not cut the grass low for the first time: cut to the same height as in the autumn - to a level of about 5 cm or higher, regardless of the type of lawn.

After mowing, begin full care with watering, feeding, aeration and regular mowing with a frequency of about one week. But do not expect that the lawn immediately turns into a magic carpet: a dense and thick lawn will form after about 6-8 weeks.

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