The Q&A Archives: New Lawn

Question: I just bought a home where the lawn has not been touched for 3 years. I am going to clear out the yard, which is about an acre and start over. The area that I live in is sandy, but the person who was there 3 years ago was an avid gardner. Once I get the yard cleared out, what is the best course of action I should take? I also am going to plant Azoya (sp?) Grass. My dad has it and is wonderful. Can you please give me any advice on what is the best way to tackle this task?

Thank you

A first time home owner

Answer: Prior to kelling out the entire lawn, I would strongly suggest you consult with your county extension as to the best varieties of grass for your area. Zoysia grass is not recommended for areas with cold winters, so it may not be the best choice for your area. It also requires a special care regime quite different from that for a typical cooler climate lawn. You should also run some basic soil tests and then prepare the soil with any amendments as indicated by the test results. Your county extension should be able to help you with the tests and interpreting the results with an eye on growing lawn grasses. Finally, you might want to read up a bit on lawn care and establishment because it is an ongoing and somewhat lengthy process. A book I particularly like is "Lawn Care for Dummies" by Lance Walheim, ISBN 0-7645-5077-2. In it you will find straightforward and step by step practical information on all aspects of lawn care and establishment using either sod or seed. Good luck with your project!

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