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How to build your lawn correctly to save years of problems!

The secret to a 1st class lawn lies in it's construction.

A healthy, hard wearing lawn used for daily for playing football, golf and entertaining can also be a beautiful lawn.  This photo was taken July 2004 only 1 week after a treatment!Our lawns are constructed based on the principals of golf green construction.  This way we can achieve a lower maintenance, harder wearing lawn.  It is important to select the right type of materials, quantities and depths to ensure that your lawn is constructed correctly, so that it will be suitable for the purpose for many years to come.

Step 1 - Preparation of the sub base

Firstly clear the site to appropriate levels and falls. Install a gravel base with drainage system. Install drains - 3 lengths of plastic land drain triangulating out from one large soak away were used on the above site. This was in preference to a herringbone drain, as most drains require cleaning out after a few years, and access can be made from one point to all 3 drains covering the site.  

Use an relatively inert gravel such as sandstone.  Using limestone to backfill drain trenches is not a good idea, even if it is often cheaper than other materials the alkaline will react with the preferred acidic soil conditions and will be readily broken down in acid soils.  Alkaline conditions are also attractive to earth worms which will cast into the stone backfill therefore clogging it up and worm casts also disrupt the surface.

At this point installing ducting tubes for electricity or garden irrigation is a great idea even if you are sure you are going to use them.  Install pop up irrigation to make it easy to irrigate, particularly during the establishment stage. A layer of fine gravel on top of coarse gravel and then a layer of course sand blinds the structure off, ready for the rootzone.

Step 2 - The Rootzone

It is vital to have the correct rootzone for a good lawn.. If a rootzone is heavy with a high clay content then water will not drain easily into the gravel layers and this will be a maintenance headache.  We used a 20 tons of 70/30 sand / soil golf green mix. Although it costs a little more, it is sterile, (you cannot easily get rid of unwanted coarse weed grasses that germinate) it's stone free and easy to handle.  It is a freely draining material ideal for grass root growth and as a "specified mix" it does not contain recycled materials such as crushed building waste and other impurities which could affect the health of the lawn.

Step 3 - The surface

Considerable effort is necessary to obtain the correct levels.  Any lawn which undulates too much will be difficult to mow as scalping may occur on high sections and lush growth in the hollows particularly if you close mow with a cylinder mower for the best finish.  Let the levels settle for a long as possible.  Raking and consolidating with your heels several times over every inch of the lawn stabilises the surface.

Step 4 - The correct seed

Once constructed, it is important to maintain your lawn regularly to ensure it stays healthy and hard wearingIn the UK, conditions are usually favourable to sow seed in Spring or early Autumn when the grown is warm or warming up and moist.  You may wish to turf.  Whichever method you choose, pick your grass mix very carefully .  There are many cheap agricultural grass varieties available, which are great if you want to grow fodder for your sheep!  Grass can also be specified with  with drought resistant properties for the hot summers we hope for.  Feel free to contact Country Landscapes for further details or advice.

                                                Constructionline Approved

Qualified Garden Landscaping and Landscape Gardener covering Lancashire Bury Bolton and Rossendale.

If you have any question regarding our services or our customer web at w w w . c o u n t r y - l a n d s c  a p e s . c o m  please ring 01204 402222 (no unsolicited sales calls please)  Copyright Country Landscapes Ltd. All rights reserved.  Unauthorised use of photos will be chargeable.  Bolton Lancashire / Manchester Company Registration 4444028.