It is currently Mon Feb 08, 2016 4:12 am

All times are UTC - 6 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 8 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Leveling front yard
PostPosted: Tue May 04, 2010 10:50 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue May 04, 2010 10:37 am
Posts: 4
I have a small front lawn in the South Houston area that has uneven, worn patches in the turf where I turn the mower, PLUS I have 2 bald cypress trees with knees coming up. I'd like to level the uneven ground and would like to know what MATERIAL to use and what TIME OF YEAR would be best to do this.
Pat


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Leveling front yard
PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2010 8:46 am 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator

Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2003 3:45 pm
Posts: 2884
Location: San Antonio,TEXAS
The answer is, 'it depends.' If you can answer the following questions I can give you an answer.

What kind of grass do you have?
How high are you mowing and how often?
How often are you watering and for how long?
How often are you fertilizing and what are you using?

_________________
David Hall
Moderator
Dirt Doctor Lawns Forum


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Leveling front yard
PostPosted: Wed May 12, 2010 12:48 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue May 04, 2010 10:37 am
Posts: 4
Thanks for your questions.
St Augustine
the "next to highest" setting on my mower.(higher than any of my neighbors) Mow 1 x per week (xcept winter and early spring)
Sprinkler system set to water 2 x per week. 2 passes in early am to soak in deeply.Approx 15min per station with 2 passes = 30min.
Fertilize Spring and Fall , but forgot to do so this year !!
use an organic fertilizer, medina ?? not sure of brand.
have been mowing very high for 6 years -
have spots of dead grass. might be fungal damage - I plan to get some ag corn meal & some corn meal gluetin or whatever you recomend. have aerated one time w mechanical device. never treated for thatch. I can pull out handfulls of dead grass in the dead grass spots.
major issue is still the uneven-ness of the lawn seems like a very bumpy road - not all caused by roots from the cypress. been "trenched" 2 x in 10years- pitch-forked the trench to loosen and filled w partial compost. Have never added soil or sand to lawn.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Leveling front yard
PostPosted: Thu May 13, 2010 7:50 am 
Offline

Joined: Sun Apr 11, 2010 6:39 pm
Posts: 71
Location: Dallas, TX
When you pull up handfulls of dead grass what do the roots look like?

Black roots can indicate fungus. - Treat w/ corn meal

Missing roots indicate grubs. If so, do a visual inspecition by digging up 1sqft and counting the grubs you find - Treat w/ beneficial nematodes


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Leveling front yard
PostPosted: Mon May 17, 2010 9:07 pm 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator

Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2003 3:45 pm
Posts: 2884
Location: San Antonio,TEXAS
Now would probably be the best time but you'll have to do some prep work first. Why now? Because the grass is growing as fast as it will grow. By leveling when the grass is growing fast you minimize the chances and severity of smothering. If you have areas where it is deeper than an inch, you should probably pretreat now with sand. I think you can use any kind of sand but there is a good argument to use builders' sand (not playground sand). Playground sand remains loose like pea gravel. Builders' sand should lock in and give you a firmer surface.

Here's how you do this.
  1. Fertilize any time but preferably 2 weeks prior to doing the leveling.
  2. Mow the grass down as low as your mower will go. This will probably take a couple weeks of mowing twice a week.
  3. Mow one last time.
  4. Spread sand everywhere.
  5. Level the sand with a drag made from a 5-foot (or longer) piece of chain link fence connected to a rope and with some weight on top. I used a 2x4 and tied the rope through the fencing to the 2x4. Then I added weight to the 2x4. Drag in all directions until you think it is level. If you have a riding mower this goes very easy. Otherwise your wife will get tired pulling the plow all afternoon in the heat :lol:
  6. Roll the sand down with a water fillable roller.
  7. Water the sand to settle it. Let that dry but not completely.
  8. Add more sand where you think you need it and repeat steps 4-6 again.
  9. Repeat 3-6 until you have it perfect. When all is done you should not have raised the surface of the soil except in the low spots. Your original high spots should still be the same height.
  10. Serve pizza and beer to the people who helped you.
  11. Water it 3x per day for 10 minutes each time for 2 weeks until the grass peeks back out. I know this is too frequent for normal lawns but this leveling process is not normal.

St Augustine is very easy to smother. What you are doing with the drag is helping to pull the short St Aug blades out from under the sand. Only those blades sticking out from the sand will survive this process. That is why you should pre-fill the deeper areas.

The proper amount of weight for a roller is enough so that your foot prints behind it are not showing. It really needs to have some weight. This will not compact your soil. It will help settle it. Settling takes 3 years unless you help it along. That is probably why you have bumpy soil now. It was probably tilled prior to sodding. Tilling is the fastest way to an unsatisfactory lawn.

If you buy too many bags of sand, you can return it later. If you buy not enough sand, you will have to stop in the middle and go get more. Be sure you have everything you need before you start.

Keep a push broom handy. It can be used to dress the surface of the sand and help bring the St Augustine blades up.

_________________
David Hall
Moderator
Dirt Doctor Lawns Forum


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Leveling front yard
PostPosted: Tue May 18, 2010 10:44 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue May 04, 2010 10:37 am
Posts: 4
Thanks so much for all the detail info !!!
Sounds like a big project so I'd better eat my wheaties to get ready.

really appreciate your response!! Pat Robson


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Leveling front yard
PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 8:50 am 
Offline
Moderator
Moderator

Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2003 3:45 pm
Posts: 2884
Location: San Antonio,TEXAS
No prob. We want to see before, during and after pictures :D

_________________
David Hall
Moderator
Dirt Doctor Lawns Forum


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Leveling front yard
PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 4:11 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue May 04, 2010 10:37 am
Posts: 4
sorry, didn't take pics before or during.

Right now the grass that is showing is very tall andI am about to mow. The sand has settled some and what remains on the surface are the tiny pebbles in the sand. Hope i don't throw too many around in the mowing process. I do have a push mover just in case.

I will try to take some pics and post them later.

thanks again....................Pat


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 8 posts ] 

All times are UTC - 6 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by eWeblife