Weve just bought a house in northern France (Picardy) which has a larg
garden which has been rather neglected for about a year. We're complet
beginners to gardening so we thought we'd start by tackling the tw
(front and back) lawns but we're not sure where to begin.
I dont know what type of grass it is but I do know we have a lots o
weeds and moss.
All we've done so far is to cut it but I plan on doing soil tests.
What would be your suggestions of a plan of action and when?
Thanks for any help
PS Ive tried to attach images but its failing so you can see the
Your lawn looks as nice as many that are considered to be in good
condition. I believe I'd take a conservative approach. Grass doesn't
change overnight, so plan on a year to get it to where you want it to
First, get that soil test. That will tell you what you need to change.
In most cases, putting down the soil amendments (just some fertilizer if
you're lucky) and appropriate watering will do most of the work.
Cut the grass to the appropriate height. This will kill lots of weeds
that need to be tall to survive. You'll have to check with a local
authority on the appropriat height. Ask the people who do your soil
Moss grows where things are shaded and damp. Grass likes lots of direct
light. You may have to trim some trees. There comes that appropriate
watering thing again.
Try to avoid weed killers if you can. They knock the grass back no
matter what the label says about them being safe. Keeping the grass
mowed, fed, and watered will allow it to grow and crowd out lots of
weeds. Manual pulling will get others. Chemical treatments have their
place, but I like to use it as a last resort.
Good luck with your project. Post pictures as you go. People here will
be glad to give you a hand.
I don;t know what your standards are, but it looks awful to me.
Certainly not anything like what a lawn considered to be in good
condition looks like here in NJ. In fact, much of it doesn't even
appear to be grass.
If you have a lawn full of undesirable grass and weeds, most of what
fertilizer is going to do is make what's there grow so you have more
Yes, cutting to the correct height is important. For cool season
grasses, somewhere in the range of 2 1/2 to 3 inchs should be fine.
Also compacted soil and low PH favors moss. The soil test will tell
you if the PH needs adjusting. If the soil is compacted, core
aeration can help,. and most lawns can benefit from it whether
compacted or not.
This lawn sure meets my definition of last resort. I also try to
keep chemical use to a minimum, but it isn't realistic to think you
can fix this mess without some initial use of chemicals. In fact, my
approach would probably be to use Roundup to kill off everything that
is there and then re-seed with an appropriate and high quality seed.
That way you start with a grass with the right characteristics, ie
texture, color, light tolerance, disease resistant, growing speed,
etc. After that, you can use spot treatment with broadleaf weed
control, as needed. And if crabgrass is a problem in his area, a pre-
emergent in Spring.
I'd do some internet searches on lawn renovation and go from there.
One key is if the soil that is there is good. If it is, then you can
kill off what's there, aerate, then use a slice seeder to establish
the new lawn. If the soil is poor or there is not enough top soil
there at all, then that needs to be addressed by tilling in
appropriate ammendments first.
firstname.lastname@example.org wrote on 17 Aug 2007 in group alt.home.lawn.garden:
I should have known that comment might get a reaction.
Think "landlord". To many of them, a lawn that doesn't attack anyone is
good. That's not my definition, and it's not the way my lawn looks, but
it's the level to which I'm asked to maintain many renthouse lawns. I'm
not advocating that level of care.
after the test results are evaluated by a person with
the proper training and expertise you will be able to
streamline the cost of producing the lawn and landscaping
you desire by omitting unnecessary expenses thus enabling
you to establish a plan of action making the best use of
congratulations to you on your decision to have soil test.
Thanks for all the advice.
I think we're going to see how much we can improve whats there b
aerating, scarifying and feeding and if its still looking poor the
we'll look into digging up and re-seeding.
Will keep you posted...
Other than congratulating him on having his soil tested, which he
already knew, what did you contribute to the thread to answer his
question, other than the above cheap shot directed at me, smart guy?
At least this time you didn't make a complete ass of yourself, like
you did by slamming my correct advice and then talking about bermuda
grass when the guy in CT asked for help on his cool season grass.
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