Three Types of Repairs to Keep Your Lawn Healthy

Even the healthiest of lawns require regular maintenance. Here are three common repairs that your outdoor space might require.

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Materials Needed:

  • For replacing turf:
  • half moon cutter
  • turfing iron or spade
  • gardening fork
  • rake
  • For reseeding grass:
  • gardening fork
  • half moon cutter or spade
  • rake
  • top-dressing
  • lawn seed
  • watering can or gardening hose
  • garden netting
  • For repairing patches:
  • half moon cutter or spade
  • rake
  • shade-tolerant seed mix
  • watering can or gardening hose

Replacing a Square of Turf

When replacing a damaged patch of grass, it is a good idea to try to identify the underlying cause so that you can try to prevent it from occurring again. For example, if the turf has become worn from being regularly walked on, it might be worth replacing it with a path or inserting stepping stones. The best time to repair damaged turf is fall or spring. Cut out the piece of damaged turf using a half moon cutter, then use a turfing iron or spade to cut underneath, severing the roots, at a depth of about 1-1/2 to 2 inches (4 to 5 cm). Use a fork to dig over the bottom of the hole. Cut a new piece of turf from another area with similar grasses in it, and tamp it down with the back of a rake. Water well.

Replacing Damaged TurfEnlarge Photo+Shrink Photo-DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Reseeding a Patch of Grass

The best time to reseed patches in the lawn is in spring or fall. Fork over any bare areas of soil, and then rake them level with the existing lawn. If the level is lower, build them up with top-dressing. Sprinkle grass seed at the recommended rate, and then rake it in gently. Try to choose a seed mix that is suitable for your conditions. The grass might have suffered in the first place if the wrong mix was used; there are seed mixes for shady spots, high impact areas, and damp soils, so make sure you choose one that matches your conditions. Keep the areas well watered during germination, and use netting to protect them from falling leaves and to deter birds.

Reseed Patch of GrassEnlarge Photo+Shrink Photo-DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Repairing Patches

Lawns can often start to look patchy and die back when they are growing in the shade. This frequently occurs under trees, near the edges of raised beds, or where edging material overshadows the turf. These areas will need regular repairs to keep them looking good. Remove the damaged sections of the lawn using a half moon cutter or spade, and rake the area using top-dressing to adjust the level. Then sow a seed mix containing shade-tolerant species, and water in well. Alternatively, repair the lawn using patches of turf from other areas of the lawn. Identify shady areas of the lawn that are already growing well, remove small sections of it, and use these to patch up the damaged area.

Repair LawnEnlarge Photo+Shrink Photo-DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

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