Muddy Lawn

I had my back lawn returfed in February. However after rotovation, th
turf was laid straight onto clay. As a result there is more mud tha lawn this winter. It has been suggested that I need to have th existing turf rotovated and a layer of fine gravel laid and the returfed. Is this the best way of draining the soil and when would b the best time to do this
-- Sally
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Remove the old lawn then you need to rototill in compost in to the top 8 inches of the soil This will bust up the clay soil which will improve drainage and add lots of good nutrients to your soil. If you are going to re-sod you can do this anytime the sod farmers in you area will deliver fresh sod. If you are going to seed the lawn, I prefer the fall because of less weeds, but it can be done in the spring.

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Sir Topham Hatt said:

One of the best posts to this group, in a long time, deverves a repeat. =)
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Sally wrote:

Water forms puddles on the surface of clay. Adding sand will improve drainage. Adding compost will allow the soil to retain the water.
Because you have clay, gypsum is probably a good additive. It breaks up the clay and improves the drainage. It's less expensive than fertilizer.
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aeration wouldn't hurt either/
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Or not.

Great idea.

There are people (including me) that will tell you gypsum only helps if your soil has a chemical imbalance, otherwise it's a waste of your money.
Stick with adding organics and/or drainage, there isn't a magic powder cure for that problem.
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Steveo wrote:

Please refer to http://www.paulparent.com . Search for "gypsum". You'll find, "If your soil is heavy and water seems to sit there, apply some garden gypsum to soften the soil and improve drainage." I trust the source. Paul has degrees in horticulture from UMass Sturbridge. (I'd love to go through that program!).
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snipped-for-privacy@alum.mit.edu says...

It looks like the idea is to just spread it on over the grass? How much?
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What does your soil analysis say? Does it need a calcium sulfate dehydrate adjustment? (gypsum)
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wrote:

You might also look at: http://cecalaveras.ucdavis.edu/clay.htm "Gypsum will not improve a clay soil unless the soil also happens to be sodic."
http://www.puyallup.wsu.edu/~Linda%20Chalker-Scott/Horticultural%20Myths_files/Myths/Gypsum.pdf "Adding gypsum to sandy or non-sodic soils is a waste of money, natural resources, and can have negative impacts on plant, soil, and ecosystem health"
http://www.coopext.colostate.edu/4DMG/Soil/gypsum.htm
"As far as relieving soil compaction, gypsum has no effect."
http://www.wtamu.edu/~crobinson/DrDirt/gypsum.html
"The only soil that can be benefitted by adding gypsum is a soil high in sodium, called "sodic soil" or "black alkali." "
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Black alkali is black mariah's second cousin, nasty.
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Yeah It says that on the bag too, it must be true right?
It's calcium, an amendment to the chemical structure of the soil. It doesn't do anything else to dirt. No magical soil massage in a bag going on there.
Glad to help you again, Stub.
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Yes, you need major ag schooling Stub. Go for it.
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