Grass on my front lawn won't grow!
Arnold Santos
July 28, 2013 in Design Dilemma
I'm going to rototill the front but I'm not sure if I'm going to put new grass or not. I want to take the grass out because it's ugly because it's mostly dead. Any ideas on what I should put in? I'm on a tight budget.
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Roger Koehn
If the area is not expansive, I would consider buying a pallet of sodded grass. A less expensive option is cover the area with good topsoil, plant fast-growing rye and then the grass of your choice depending on your locale. Consult your local landscaping professional for the most appropriate grass type.
July 28, 2013 at 8:02am   
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Arnold Santos
How much is a pallet of sod?
July 28, 2013 at 8:06am   
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Revolutionary Gardens
Especially if budget's tight you really need to assess WHY grass isn't growing. Here are some possible reasons:

1- Do you have a lot of large trees and shade? Even if the bag says it's for shade, you're going to struggle to grow grass under big trees. It's not just sun - that grass is competing for water and nutrients with big trees with established root systems. If this is the case, you may have to choose between the trees and the lawn. Most folks choose to keep the trees (I approve), and a shade-tolerant groundcover is a good lawn alternative,

2- Is it a new(er) home? Most homebuilders (especially the big ones) remove all the topsoil while grading your lot, then right at the end they spread a tiny amount back on before seeding or sodding. 9 times out of 10 everyone's grass looks rough after a year because there's no organic matter. What we like to do in situations like this is come in with a sodcutter, strip off all the existing grass, add 4-6" of topsoil (it'll settle about 30%), and seed or sod.

Groundcovers are great. I wish Houzz would make people say where they're located because there's no point recommending something to you if it won't work in your zone, but here's a front yard we did where all the sod came out and we went with a groundcover. This is a month or two after planting; I really need to get back there now as it's had a year+ to fill in:
July 28, 2013 at 8:11am     
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Arnold Santos
There is a couple of big trees. I just don't know is they affect the grass or not. I have neighbors with big trees in the middle of their yard and their grass looks great. I've attached a couple of pictures of my front yard.
July 28, 2013 at 9:42am   
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I agree that you need to determine WHY the grass is not growing well. Otherwise, you may spend a fortune on the wrong solution to your problem.
I suggest you cut a 6 inch deep sample of the grass and take it and the photos you posted to your local plant nursery (not national chain). The horticulturalist on staff may have some ideas for you, or be able to refer you to a landscaper who will know what to do.
Be prepared to amend your soil. Think about the possibility of using grass(es) native to your region. Think about the possibility of planting a native ground cover instead of grass.
I am interested to know what you learn about your dilemma.
July 28, 2013 at 9:56am     
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Roger Koehn
A pallet of sod pricing varies on the type of grass. Typically 25¢ to $1.00 a sf.
July 28, 2013 at 10:54am   
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Roger Koehn
Also a pallet covers 450-500 sf.
July 28, 2013 at 10:54am   
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