New lawn problem, please help!

Hey all, I'm new to the group and hoping to figure out a way to save my brand new lawn. I had a pal roto-till the whole lawn area and even it out, before I spread the lawn seed. Makes SUCH a difference! :)
I have a quarter of our back yard, (70' X 80'), fenced off for our dogs' run, (run is 70' X 20'), all filled with sand. It's great because now we have enough room to have a very very nice 'people yard'. :) And we have a seperate stairway for the dogs, to get to their part. It works very well as hubby is in a wheelchair and can let them out from back door.
Anyway, just after it's third mowing, to about 3 inches, (a shady/sun fescue mix), we had the usual guy come to spread more sand in the dog run. He'd always dumped it from the back, (which leads to an alley), and used a smaller back hoe to spread the sand out, along with the guys with rakes. We specifically put in a big double gate for easier access for the back hoe. This time, however the newer guy thought it would be *easier*, (for him!), to just pull the huge dump truck into the yard and then dump all of the sand together, at the closest-to-house area, then go on to the smaller back hoe. <grrrrrrrwwwwllllll>
Needless to say my lawn, which was coming up just beautifully, now has a LOT of huge tire tracks in it, and the grass has been trampled to under the dirt! Is there ANY way I can save this? Or do I just have to reseed the 'track marks'?
I did put down a lot more seed than I usually do, and the lawn is so luscious and full! Do I need to water more often, (as I was told by a neighbor), if I've overseeded?
My Dad has had his 'envious' eyes on my lawn, <g>, which literally had about ONLY 20 or so weeds in it! This was *my* thinking on keeping the weeds out, by over-seeding a bit. It's worked so far, and it only takes me about 5-10 minutes of weeding, to get it ALL out.
So I guess I have more than one question, eh? :)
Was I wrong to overseed, and do I need to make up for that with extra waterings?
And more important, will I be able to save the lawn done in by the track marks?
(I will notnotnot listen to my Dad as he is the world's worst lawm guy! <G> (Great big 'Green Thumb' for everything else that grows, but never has any luck with a lawn, even tho I tell him not to fertilize til Sept, maybe in April, but not all the time during the summer.) He always starts off with the most gorgeous lawn on his street, then he thinks he has to *fertilize* it like crazy! ",,,,if some fertilizer is good, more will be better......" I'm sure you know the type, er, um, maybe *that's* why I over seeded? <LOL>
Anyway, he insists on fertilizing his lawn many times during the summer, tho by the second time he does so, his lawns *melt*, and he starts over, and over, same damage, until he winds up buying sod, which he then over fertilizes also! So, I will not ask him for help, and more to the point, I have told him if he goes anywhere NEAR MY lawn with fertilizer, I'm siccing the dogs on him!!! <EG> (Yeah, a golden retriever, 14, a female lab, 9, and a lab mix, 9,that love his treats daily! <g> I had to physically restrain him the first year he moved out here near me! Oh well....
I'm glad to have found this group and am looking forward for some advice, for which I will say "Thanks!" in advance!
Gratefully yours, MaryBeth andthe pups
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Mary Beth wrote:

If by tire tracks you mean that the soft soil has sunk down 3 inchs where it was run over, which is what probably happened, then the best solution will be to fill it in with topsoil and reseed. If it's only an inch deep depression, then I'd just wait and see what happens. The new grass may survive. If it's been pushed into the ground, very lightly raking with a lawn rake may help pull some of the grass out and help it survive. Given that it's so l

Yes, if anytime you seed you need to keep the surface constantly damp for several weeks. As the grass starts to get established you can graduallly reduce the watering. During hot weather this summer, you will need to water it at least every several days, as the new grass won't have deep roots this season and will die from lack of water, while regular grass would survive. That;s one of the big advantages to seeding in the Fall, instead of Spring. The new grass has more than twice as long to get established before hot weather arrives.

Now I'm confused. You said you roto tilled the lawn. That is not overseeding. Overseeding is used when the grass that is already there is desirable, but not dense enough. You typically overseed using a slice seeder, which is most effective. Or you can also do it following core aeration.
What you described is called establishing a new lawn. And typically you would use Roundup to kill the grass that was already there prior to tilling.
It's also not clear what the exiting problem was. Was the lawn thin and not able to grow in via normal care, like good Fall fertilization? It almost sounds like you did this because you had 20 weeds? If that was the only problem, this was the wrong solution. Many lawns have some weeds that are easily eliminated with spot application of weed killer.

Yep, more lawns have died from excess watering and fertilizer than lack of it. I never apply fertilizer in summer, only once in Spring, twice in Fall.

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Okay great, it may be able to come back up. It's just about one inch deep tracks. Luckily it hasn't rained for over a week now, and I had planned on watering *after* they dumped the sand. I still was only expecting the smaller back hoe. It did rain a lot last nite, so we'll see how that does.

Yeah, I understand this, but had no choice, we bought the house last September and the back yard wasn't the top priority. :) The lawn has been doing very well. I did all the tilling and seeding in March. It is a lawn finally, and even tho I watered every day, I'd started to back down the past three weeks, as the grass is very well established and is getting very long. It's been mowed to about 3 inches every time so far.

Okay, I see what you mean. I did till it, the whole yard, raked and rolled it. Then spread the seed, a LOT of seed. That's what *I* was calling 'over-seeding' I put down a lot of it. Perhaps over-'sowing' would be clearer. :)

Wasn't much in the way of anything but dirt there, when we started. But did do a spot spray.

Nope, misunderstanding, I was merely bragging about how great the lawn is, so thick not very many weeds have a chance to get through. I dig them all out, every time by the roots, and keep on top of it, as my neighbors house/lawn is empty and has plenty of weeds there....gotta keep the seeds from there, out of my lawn.
My main problem is the tire tracks, and I'll just have to wait and see.
Thanks for your reply, I do appreciate it. :)
MaryBethj
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