Top 5 Tips for Creating a New Lawn
1. Project planning is paramount
There’s more to creating a beautiful lawn than just digging over a patch of dirt and throwing some turf on it.
Of course, that would work. And you would get a lawn - of sorts. But if you want to be able to look out of your window and puff your chest out with pride at a verdant green, weed-free lawn. Then you need to plan ahead.
Ask yourself questions like:
What do I want this lawn for?
Is it for the family to play on? In which case it will need to be hardwearing
How much time do I want to spend on mowing and maintenance?
Taking care of a fine-leaved lawn like a bowling green takes an awful lot of dedication. If you’re time-poor opt for a more robust ryegrass based lawn.
Is my garden shady?
Not all lawn grasses do well in low-light conditions. Better to opt for one of the specialist turf types if your garden suffers from shade.
When do I want to lay the new lawn?
Will you be taking time off work, or do you want to get everything done in one weekend?
Is there a deadline for the work to be done?
What’s the budget?
2. Healthy Soil = Healthy Lawn
A garden can only ever be as good as the soil it’s growing in.
If the soil in your vegetable garden or your flower borders is poor, then it can be improved by adding organic matter.
If the soil beneath your lawn is poor – it’s very difficult to change that.
Before you lay turf or sow grass seed, give the soil a quality check.
The ideal soil for turfing is well drained – but not dry. It has plenty of organic matter in it. A nice friable texture. Plenty of worms and other minibeasts. And a lovely fresh, earthy smell to it.
This lovely dark-coloured crumbly soil is ideal for turfing
If you have any doubts at all, it’s well worth investing in some really top quality topsoil to get your lawn off to the best possible start.
3: Buy the best turf you can afford
As a general rule of thumb, the cheaper the product, the harder you have to work to make it into something good. That applies to turf just as much as it does to cooking ingredients and technology.
Of course, there’s a happy medium. Unless you want a really specialised product like wild flower turf or shade tolerant turf, it’s daft to pay exhorbitant prices. At Wimborne Turf we try hard to give you the best possible product at reasonable prices.
Take a look at our online shop – we think you’ll be suitably impressed.
4: Have enough help
In theory, it’s easy to lay turf. Get rid of any unwanted vegetation and rocks. Dig the soil, rake it to a tilth, lay the turf and water it in.
In practice, it can be hard physical work. And as soon as your turf arrives on site, you are working on borrowed time. Turf is very perishable and the warmer the weather gets, the quicker turf quality deteriorates.
Landscape professionals make light work of turfing
One person should be able to lay 60-100 square metres of turf onto prepared soil in one day. If you are prepping and laying by yourself you will get tired. Especially if you’re not used to physical labour.
Make sure you have enough people on site to get the job done. Even if that means one person is only there to keep the drinks and snacks coming – it’s important to keep those energy levels up!
5: Hire a professional if you can
I’m a writer working in the landscape industry. I have laid great swathes of turf in my own garden. It was much harder that I thought and I’m not altogether happy with the results. Levelling soil is not what I’m good at. Writing blogs is more my bag.
When my parents moved to a new property I hired a landscaper friend to help them lay their new lawn. Best decision I’ve ever made.
Yes, there was a cost to it. But oh boy! The finished lawn was far superior to anything I could ever have done myself. Worth every penny.
If you’re in Dorset and you need a new lawn, I thoroughly recommend Wimborne Turf. They’re a lovely family business and they’re really good at what they do.
So that’s my fabulous five lawn creation tips. If you have any tips of your own, please don’t hesitate to add them into the comments box.
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- Teresa Flower