Improving a lawn


Is it possible to just throw a bunch of grass seed onto an existing lawn, one that is not worth starting again from scratch, but that could use thickening up?
Would I have to throw some soil down on top? I need to be able to continue cutting it every week. I have around 1/2 acre to do.
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Just tossing the seed does little from my experience. You have to scratch the surface a bit for best results. Go to the Scott's web site.
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Overseeding is very common. You'd do it good by renting a verticut machine and using that along with the overseeding. But it's not totally necessary.
--
Steve Barker




"dean" < snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com> wrote in message
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Just throwing seed down is very ineffective and considering what seed costs, a waste of money. To do a 1/2 acre, I'd rent a slice seeder. It has discs that cut a series of grooves about 2" apart, and then drops seed from a hopper. That results in excellent germination.
But, you should also consider what you have to start with, what the soil composition is, etc. For example, if you have hard compacted soil, then that needs to be addressed. Or if the PH is off, that should be fixed. Or if you have mostly crappy, coarse, weed type grasses, then it would be better to kill it all off and establish a new lawn with qualtiy seed. Best time for that is Fall. If you do it now, it's harder, more competition from weeds, more water with increasing temps, etc
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A lawn will recover (and grow thick and lush) if it's allowed to recover! One of THE most common mistakes in caring for a lawn is that folks tend to set their mowers way, WAAAY too low. Now, I'm not saying this is what you're doing, Dean. But if by chance you are... Please, stop now and give your lawn a break, will ya? ; )
I fertiize once a year, rarely seed, and never water. And yet I consistently have one of the greenest lawns in the neighborhood. Why? Because I refuse to cut too short and damage my lawn's root system. It makes a world of difference.
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A lawn filling in on it's own is true to some extent. But a lot depends on what kind of grass he has. If it's bluegrass, it can spread. If it's a clump type grass, like fescue, it won't fill in larger bare spots.

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Kewless wrote:

Right on! If the lawn is a little thin, without large dead areas, the best result for the money might be to fertilize. Proper watering and mowing do a great deal to keep a lawn healthy and free of weeds. After it is fertilized, it should fill in on it's own; then, treat once for broadleaf weeds (not in hot, dry weather).
If the soil is very hard packed, you might need aeration. A soil test at the extension service can show significant pests or chemical problems.
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