Repair Your Lawn Like the Pros
Repairing your lawn successfully involves a few seemingly simple goals. First, you want to make sure there’s enough grass for a thick turf layer. Next, it’s important to keep the grass healthy and well-fed with the right amount of water and nutrients. Finally, the lawn also needs to be protected from pests.
One of the first things you’ll want to find out is what kind of grass varieties you have. Everything from mowing and watering to fertilizing and weed prevention depends on the unique characteristics of your lawn. Taking this step can make lawn repair much easier.
Eight Steps for Repairing Brown Spots and Bald Patches on Lawn Turf
Few things stick out as much in an otherwise healthy lawn as brown patches or bare spots. How can you fix this issue?
1. Dig Up Bare or Brown Spots on Lawn Turf
First, you need to remove the problem areas of grass. Dig up the entire brown section plus about six inches of healthy grass around it. Go down to a depth of approximately two inches.
2. Add a Soil Conditioner
The next step is to give your new seedlings the best-growing medium possible. For a lush lawn, aerate the exposed soil and mix it with Harvest Gold Organics Premium Soil Conditioner. The silica and minerals in this nourishing mix feed new grass and give it fresh soil to germinate in.
3. Replant Grass With New Seed
Spread your new seed amply over the bare soil. Feel free to overseed surrounding areas somewhat as well. Next, spread a half-inch layer of fresh compost (nothing that has weeds in it) or topsoil. A layer of hay can also maintain moisture and protect new seed.
4. Water Seeded Areas Sufficiently
During the first two weeks, water grass seeds to a depth of one inch a few times a day. Depending on the weather, you may need to water more or less frequently to keep the topsoil moist.
After your new grass starts growing, it’s time to increase the amount of moisture. Water to a depth of two inches to assist the deeper roots. Your lawn needs enough water to stay moist, but not so much that seedlings have pools of water or mud.
Once the grass is tall enough to mow, you’ll want to begin watering more deeply but less frequently. Aim to reach several inches into the soil once or twice a week.
5. Fertilize the Entire Lawn
Approximately six to eight weeks after planting, new grass needs fertilizer to continue spurring growth. If you time grass repairs right, you can actually take advantage of this opportunity to fertilize the entire lawn. Distribute a light amount of high-quality fertilizer evenly over the grass using a spreader.
6. Give Your Lawn Time To Grow Before Mowing
To give your new grass a chance to build strong roots, and to deprive any weeds of sunlight, it’s a good idea to let the lawn grow taller than normal while waiting for your first mow. The ideal mowing height always depends on whether you have warm- or cold-season grass, but if you usually mow to two and a half inches, let the new grass grow to about three and a half or four inches before mowing. After this first time, you can resume your regular mowing routine for the lawn.
7. Eliminate Pests and Weeds
During the primary growth period, any weeds can generally be pulled out by hand. Don’t use weed killer on new grass seed until you’ve mowed at least three or four times. Actually, by planting and nourishing new grass with Harvest Gold Organics Premium Soil Conditioner, you strengthen sprouting grass and protect against pests and weeds from the very start.
What about pest problems? In general, insecticides don’t cause problems for new grass. The right time to apply pest control products actually depends more on the life cycle of the insects. To get rid of grubs, for example, you’ll want to use a grub killer in spring or early summer.
The Right Technique for Repairs Using Sod Patches
If you don’t have the time to plant new grass seed or look forward to somewhat faster results, using sod to repair a lawn is a valid option. The basic technique is similar to what you need to do when reseeding, except you can take advantage of already started grass that’s completely free of weeds.
The first step is to measure a rectangular portion of sod to use as a patch. Next, dig up an identical area of the existing lawn. This should cover any brown spots or bald patches in the grass and extend outward a bit. After you finish, you should have a rectangular area of exposed soil that is at least a few inches deep.
To encourage even better grass health, remove additional layers of dirt and replace them with Harvest Gold Organics Premium Soil Conditioner. This creates the ideal base for your sod to develop healthy, resistant, and deep roots. Afterward, lay the cut sod flat over this soil until it sits flush with the surrounding yard.
Now you need to keep the sod well-watered until it takes hold. Water the patch to a depth of three or four inches every day, making sure the soil stays moist but not soggy. When you start to see growth, it’s a sign that sod has taken root.
Other Great Fixes for Brown Spots and Bald Patches in Grass
The best solution for brown spots and bald patches on a lawn depends on the source of the problem. Here are a few common issues and solutions for less-than-lush lawns.
- Thatch: Hard grass that has died can keep new seeds from growing. First, you need to aerate or till the affected area, then follow the instructions for fixing brown spots and bald patches.
- Thin lawns: Overseeding each year is a great technique for thin lawns. This consists of aerating, fertilizing, and spreading new seed around the yard.
- Pet urine: The high nitrate content of pet urine has the same effect as over-fertilizing your yard. If possible, rinse the area with abundant water to neutralize the extreme pH. In this case, the best solution is prevention.
Make sure to also follow these tips allows you to give your lawn excellent preventative care:
- Sharpen lawn mower blades every year to avoid uprooting grass
- Mow at the recommended grass height for spring, summer, and fall
- Water in the morning or the evening
- Aerate every year right before the growing season
- Fertilize cool-season grass in fall and warm-season grass in late spring
Often, the issue isn’t with the grass you choose or your watering methods, but with the soil itself. If compacted soil is the culprit, aeration can help seeds grow. Poor soil with pH issues or insufficient nutrients may need treatment by a lawn specialist to ensure a gorgeous ground cover. For incredible results with lawn repair, make sure to give your grass the best soil additive possible.