I am… Lawn man!!!

Okay, not really. But it’s sort of fun playing one.
We have a rough lawn here at Homeport. It’s been getting slowly more scraggly over the years, and that evil enemy of lawns, moss, has started taking over in spots.
Talking with our landscaper roomie, she pointed out that this pattern is common in very acidic soil, have we tried to lay down lime?
By golly, no, we haven’t. It hadn’t occurred that since we have a de-acidifier already for our house water (we have well water, and the water was so acidic it was eating up our pipes), that maybe that also meant the surrounding soil was acidic, which would make it hard for grass to grow.
Hmm! We need a test! We don’t have a pH tester, but it sure sounds like this is worth figuring out. We chose a strip of lawn next to the driveway (those that know the property – it’s rigt across the driveway from the house at the top of the hill, in front of the brick wall) – that’s always had scraggly grass on it, and it’s been getting worse.
First I worked it over with a rake and a pitchfork to aerate the soil a bit, this’ll let the lime soak down into the dirt. Then I laid down a layer of lime (the granulated kind, not the white powder – apparently the powder kind takes -forever- to soak into the ground). This granulated stuff was sort of gray-brown. On top of that I put an inch or so of compost (we had a few cubic yards delivered to fill out the garden). Over that came the grass seed (MAN is grass seed expensive. I covered perhaps 300 square feet of lawn, and the seed was about $17. That’s gonna get expensive if we reseed large sections of the lawn.
All of the experts say the next step is to roll the area with a roller, or use a tamping tool. I have neither, but I have a nice garden tractor with very wide tires. I rolled over the area a couple times to get the compost firm (so it won’t just mud-up and slide away), and put the tractor away.
The last step is water. Water water water. The grass seed needs to basically be kept damp until the seeds germinate, that’ll be about 2 weeks. The next week of weather look good (highs in the low 70’s), so this means we won’t have any brutally hot days to bake the bejeezus out of that strip. If that happens, I’ll put out a sprinkler, but if I water it every morning and evening, I think I can keep ahead of the dryness.
Now we wait! If all goes well, we’ll have a nice carpet of good grass there. If not, we’ll have a mudpuddle. Woohoo!

Dave Shevett


A wandering geek. Toys, shiny things, pursuits and distractions.

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5 thoughts on “I am… Lawn man!!!

  1. No, no, no. Moss is not evil. Moss is good. Moss is nature’s way of dealing with acidic soil.
    You are modifying your soil to eliminate the moss, instead of letting your moss modify your soil.
    Silly being. Must be from New Jersey.

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