The Q&A Archives: Desperate Lawn Care

Question: My lawn is a mess. Bare spots, acidic, compacted soil, moss, shade. I moved in last march with the idea of working it this year. I am removing trees to increase sun. I believe I should also aerate, fertilize, apply lyme, rake, seed but am unsure of the order and timing. I live in central CT. Thanks, Brian

Answer: I think you can renovate your lawn - one step at a time. Start by aerating the lawn. Rent one that removes plugs (core aerator) rather than one that simply slices through the sod and soil. After running the machine over your lawn, leave the plugs on the lawn. They will dissolve in rain and when you water your lawn. After aerating, spread a thin layer of sand or compost over the lawn. This will work its way into the holes and help reduce compaction in your lawn. Once that is done, broadcast seed over the entire lawn and water well. Keep your lawn on a regular watering, feeding and mowing schedule all summer long and then spread some lime over the lawn in the fall. Lime takes several months to work its magic. By next spring you should have a healthy, happy lawn. Enjoy!

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