How to Do Basic Lawn Repair
One frequently neglected feature of your home that can make a big
difference in the overall appearance of your property is your lawn.
When your lawn is patchy, full of weeds, or overgrown it can make your
home appear unkempt, regardless of how nice the inside is. Aside from
affecting the general appearance, the condition of you lawn can also be
a significant factor in determining the resale value of your home if
you are thinking about putting it on the market sometime soon.
Take the time to make some improvements. You may be amazed at what a
few basic lawn repairs can do to the aesthetic appeal of your property,
and you can make major headway in a short amount of time. While the
process of growing new grass will require a little patience as Mother
Nature does her work, the actual time that you put in on physical labor
will be minimal. Here are few steps that you can take to get your yard
looking like new by the end of the season.
The first thing that you need to do is get rid of everything that
isn’t supposed to be there. This means any dandelions, thistle, or
unsightly clusters of weeds need to be removed. There are several ways
to go about this, but the best way is still with a small hand shovel.
Some folks also find that a long, flat-headed screwdriver works well.
Don’t just tear the weeds off at the surface level. You need to get the
entire plant, roots and all, out of the ground. A common mistake that
people make is to pull up the weeds and then just leave them lying on
the ground to chop up with the lawn mower. Believe it or not, this is
actually counter productive. When you leave the dying weeds on your
lawn or shop them up, you are releasing all of the seeds that they are
holding right back into your lawn. If you do this, then next year you
will have to repeat the process. When you pull the weeds, place them
right into garbage or a lawn refuse bag.
Once all of the weeds are out of the ground, then you need to tend
to the bare spots. Before you begin planting new grass seed, make sure
the soil on these spots is ready and able to grow things. If the ground
is very rocky or hard, then the seeds will most likely wash away before
they have a chance to take root. If the ground isn’t ready for seed,
then buy some topsoil to spread over these areas. You can buy bags of
topsoil at your local landscaping or home improvement store and these
bags are ideal if you have a few small areas. If you have larger areas
of ground to cover, then you may want to consider buying a truckload of
dirt. Check with your landscaping supplier about companies that offer
this service in your area.
There are several options available to you when you are ready to
seed the repaired areas. The traditional way is to buy a bag of grass
seed and spread it by hand. Straw is usually spread over the seeded
areas. There are several reasons for doing this. First, the straw keeps
the newly sewn seed from washing away when it rains and when you water
it. Second, it will help hide your new grass seed from the birds, who
will view you lawn patches as a free lunch. Third, the straw will act
as a thermal barrier, holding in ground heat and helping your grass to
Another option that has become available in recent years is a little
more expensive, but slightly lower maintenance. You can buy a roll that
looks just like carpet pad. In this roll is grass seed, nutrients, and
a bonding agent that holds everything down. Simply roll this pad over
the bare areas and water it according to the instructions. As the pad
begins to disintegrate over time, grass will begin to grow underneath
it. These work surprisingly well and many folks find the few extra
dollars to be well worth it.
Proper follow up is the most critical aspect of your yard
improvement project. Make sure that your new grass gets plenty of water
and that you don’t get to anxious about cutting it. Mowing your new
grass too soon can uproot the tender new shoots. If the grass is in
direct sunlight, cutting it to soon can also cause the grass to burn.
After your new grass has had the time to grow and become a viable
part of your yard, it is best to begin a lawn maintenance program. Many
manufacturers sell seasonal treatments that will help your yard stay
green, lush, and weed free. Applications for each season will not only
ensure that your lawn looks good this year, but that it will continue
to look better each year. This is a minimal investment to make and the
applications usually only take a few minutes of your time once every 3
months. A good lawn program means that you won’t have to spend time
pulling weeds and re-seeding every spring.
Of course, sometimes homeowners need a new lawn immediately. Whether
you are hosting a backyard party or if your house is going up for sale
unexpectedly, you may not have the time to nurture a yard back to
health the old-fashioned way. In these cases, sod is your best bet.
Rolls of sod can be purchased at most landscaping supply stores
throughout the summer. The most important thing to remember when laying
down rolls of sod is water, water, water. This is a quick way to solve
your lawn problems, but it is also fairly expensive, so you’ll want to
make sure that you take care of your investment.
Brian Simkins is a freelance writer living in Chicago. He enjoys
using his 14 years of home improvement experience to educate and equip
new home owners.
Content Provided By: http://www.doityourself.com/stry/lawnrepair
Author: Brian Simkins