How To Prepare Your Garden To Lay Turf

2 min read

Spring is a brilliant time of the year to establish a lush new buffalo lawn. Lawns are coming out of semi dormancy and are beginning to grow again. This means that new turf can send down roots much faster than in winter.

At this time of year, the weather is still fairly mild but is warming up slowly. As your new lawn is also becoming more established, it will be better able to cope with the increasing heat as summer arrives, and should be fully established by the onset of Summer.

Planting a new lawn in Spring also means the newly laid turf will need far less regular watering during its establishment.

Actually laying turf itself is not the most difficult job in the world (although depending on the size of the area, it can be very punishing on the knees and back!), but as with any garden work, the key to best results is in the planning and preparation.

1. Calculate How Much Turf You Need

  • Get a piece of paper and sketch out the areas to be turfed.
  • Break up the areas into basic shapes such as squares, rectangles and circles. 
  • Measure each area and write down your measurements.
  • Calculate how many square metres are in each area here.
  • Add the totals together.
  • Order extra! For simple areas like a rectangle, order 5% extra. For more complex irregular areas, order 10% extra. This will allow for any slight miscalculations and also the odd roll or slab in poor condition that you sometimes get. It’s better to have some turf left over than run out.

2. Clear the Ground and Check Your Soil Type

  • Remove any existing vegetation and check if existing soil type is suitable or needs improving.
  • For clay soils add gypsum, sandy soils add organic material, acid soils add lime and alkaline soils add sulphur.

3. Spread a Quality Turf Underlay

  • Turf underlay is a particular blend of topsoil and organic materials, blended to give your new lawn the optimum balance of nutrients and minerals it needs for the roots to establish well.
  • Spread the underlay evenly to a depth of approximately 100-150mm. This is also the best time to check levels to ensure the desired fall for drainage.

4. Check The Site Levels and Drainage

  • Check if the site needs excavating or filling and also look out for drainage issues and install ‘aggi pipe’ (agricultural drainage pipe) if necessary.  
  • If you find that you do need to excavate and imported soil is required, allow 100-150mm for soil.

If you prepare your site in this way, you will be giving your turf the best chance to thrive and provide you with a lush, green lawn for years to come!



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