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More Weeds than grass, What to do?

  • Last Updated:
  • Jun 23rd, 2017 12:11 pm
Sr. Member
Mar 19, 2013
524 posts
134 upvotes
Prince Albert, Sask.
akswun wrote:
Apr 19th, 2017 9:45 am
You're going to need a whole lot of topsoil and grass seeds.... like tons!
The area with grass patches could use some de-thatching though. Just so that the grass can be evened out.
You have a project. Here is my advice. First the weeds need to go, killed. If you don't get rid of them they will be back and usually with avengence. Light rake the loose debris. The soil looks compacted. Try a hard rake to scratch and rough up the existing soil. Apply quality topsoil and seed. Keep moist. It can take anywhere from 7 to 14 days to see results. Since you have a large area, I would divide it into several projects. Do them one at a time. If you do it all at once you may be overwhelmed. IMO key to a nice lawn is TLC and patience. Tilling is an option, if you didn't kill the weeds they will now be everywhere. I know people that have done this, till, see what comes up, treat. Repeat. Usually means delaying seeding for a year. In Sask. farming it called summerfallow.
Jr. Member
Apr 19, 2012
118 posts
13 upvotes
GTA
akswun wrote:
Apr 19th, 2017 9:45 am
You're going to need a whole lot of topsoil and grass seeds.... like tons!
The area with grass patches could use some de-thatching though. Just so that the grass can be evened out.
sienna owner wrote:
Apr 19th, 2017 12:52 pm
seems the soil is pretty compacted
put triple mix and overseed
but might be wise to aerated or even better...rent a tiller and start new (cause to me, it looks like you have more weeds & clover than grass itself)

basically..till/turn over the soil, flatten the area, triple mix & overseed...going to be a long process either way
Jazmina wrote:
Apr 19th, 2017 1:50 pm
Just make sure the seed makes contact with the soil - if it doesn't you'll be wasting your time. You have a lot of bare spots so you wouldn't need to top soil there but make sure you till the ground first. Also use fertilizer for new new growth which you can throw on the same time - be sure to get the right one. IF you have a large areas that need top soil that might get costly as in the case with me - so I'm actually renting a overseeder from Home Depot which will put slits in the ground while throwing down the seed so it makes contact with the soil without having to apply top soil - not doing that until the fall though as I don't want to spread weed seed while the weeds are germinating.
Magoo61 wrote:
Apr 19th, 2017 3:30 pm
You have a project. Here is my advice. First the weeds need to go, killed. If you don't get rid of them they will be back and usually with avengence. Light rake the loose debris. The soil looks compacted. Try a hard rake to scratch and rough up the existing soil. Apply quality topsoil and seed. Keep moist. It can take anywhere from 7 to 14 days to see results. Since you have a large area, I would divide it into several projects. Do them one at a time. If you do it all at once you may be overwhelmed. IMO key to a nice lawn is TLC and patience. Tilling is an option, if you didn't kill the weeds they will now be everywhere. I know people that have done this, till, see what comes up, treat. Repeat. Usually means delaying seeding for a year. In Sask. farming it called summerfallow.
Thanks all, sounds like I'm in for a fun summer! I'd like to avoid tilling, I'll try the suggestion of doing an area first and see how it goes. I'll probably be back in a month asking for more advice :).
Jr. Member
Feb 4, 2010
182 posts
49 upvotes
notsureofitiall wrote:
Apr 19th, 2017 4:00 pm
Thanks all, sounds like I'm in for a fun summer! I'd like to avoid tilling, I'll try the suggestion of doing an area first and see how it goes. I'll probably be back in a month asking for more advice :).
Any particular reason why you want to avoid tilling? Not sure how much luck you will have with out tilling/loosening up the compacted soil but good luck.
Sr. Member
Mar 19, 2013
524 posts
134 upvotes
Prince Albert, Sask.
notsureofitiall wrote:
Apr 19th, 2017 4:00 pm
Thanks all, sounds like I'm in for a fun summer! I'd like to avoid tilling, I'll try the suggestion of doing an area first and see how it goes. I'll probably be back in a month asking for more advice :).
Great plan. Good luck and have fun.
Sr. Member
Sep 11, 2006
812 posts
105 upvotes
DIrty-D wrote:
Apr 14th, 2017 2:51 pm
I had a few bird feeders out last year and although the birds were happy and well fed, my lawn was completely decimated due to feeding them.
Can I aerate this and reseed? Or do I have to re-sod? What is involved in a total re-sod?
I walked into Home Depot today and I get really confused with all the different materials, seeds, fertilizers etc Sooo many different types!
I see this big bag of Scotts 911 all in one lawn repair. It apparently has seeds, fertilizers and other stuff.
Can I just rake my lawn good, throw this 911 stuff down and level with top soil? Water is and call it a day? Will this work to grow grass?
Deal Addict
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Mar 30, 2006
3880 posts
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TORONTO
DIrty-D wrote:
Apr 20th, 2017 9:27 pm
I walked into Home Depot today and I get really confused with all the different materials, seeds, fertilizers etc Sooo many different types!
I see this big bag of Scotts 911 all in one lawn repair. It apparently has seeds, fertilizers and other stuff.
Can I just rake my lawn good, throw this 911 stuff down and level with top soil? Water is and call it a day? Will this work to grow grass?
It will grow grass and will probably do the job if the area is small-medium. If its a larger area, then better to go from scratch - tilling, levelling/rolling, raking, seeding, topsoil, raking, watering etc.

Sod will be shortcut and will be more expensive. Your involvement is minimal as the Sod company will do everything in most cases. You will still need to water :)
Penalty Box
Feb 13, 2017
491 posts
476 upvotes
I understand it might be too soon to seed in the GTA this weekend (from what I gather in this thread), but is it still too early to aerate, soil and fertilize?

Can I do those 3 steps this weekend and then seed in a few weeks, or is it all better done closer together?
Deal Fanatic
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Jan 27, 2004
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lol..i already did overseed twice...once in end of march and then few days ago...
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Penalty Box
Feb 13, 2017
491 posts
476 upvotes
kiasu wrote:
Apr 21st, 2017 9:08 am
lol..i already did overseed twice...once in end of march and then few days ago...
Has anything worked yet?

Seems the experts in this thread are saying to wait a bit longer..
Penalty Box
Feb 13, 2017
491 posts
476 upvotes
This is my plan...can someone confirm if this is what I want to do, or can you suggest anything else to buy? I live in Mississauga BTW.

This weekend April 23rd:


1) Mow lawn on shortest setting
2) Rake the eff out of it
3) Aerate front and back lawn
4) Place down top soil (or do I need topdressing???) Can someone confirm? And what is the top soil brand I should be looking for? The stores have too many to pick from
5) Fertilizer....thinking the scotts 30-0-0 ...is this what I want?

In about 2 weeks time (May 13th):


1) Overseed using scotts sun/shade

How does this plan look? is the gap between Step 1 (aerate) and seed of 3 weeks too long?

This is what my grass looks like,
Images
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Jan 27, 2004
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crocp8 wrote:
Apr 21st, 2017 9:25 am
Has anything worked yet?

Seems the experts in this thread are saying to wait a bit longer..
It doesnt matter..just the matter of time

Here is my schedule for overseed:
Every year i bought 10kg of sun shade from fairgreen

Overseed on sep (as soon as the heat wave is over below 20c), then one more time on end of nov or before snow

Next spring end of March, then one more time end of april or early may
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Sr. Member
Mar 19, 2013
524 posts
134 upvotes
Prince Albert, Sask.
crocp8, solid plan.i would go with Scott's enriched lawn soil for topsoil/dressing. Walmart always has decent price on this product. As for when to seed, strictly weather. Ideally when temperatures are double digits, day & night. This will give you a good germination rate. Grass seed loves warm soil. Once your grass seed germinates, 7 to 10 days, suggest applying a starter fertilizer. It has higher numbers of potassium and phosphorus to promote healthy root growth for new grass. Have fun.
Penalty Box
Feb 13, 2017
491 posts
476 upvotes
Magoo61 wrote:
Apr 21st, 2017 10:07 am
crocp8, solid plan.i would go with Scott's enriched lawn soil for topsoil/dressing. Walmart always has decent price on this product. As for when to seed, strictly weather. Ideally when temperatures are double digits, day & night. This will give you a good germination rate. Grass seed loves warm soil. Once your grass seed germinates, 7 to 10 days, suggest applying a starter fertilizer. It has higher numbers of potassium and phosphorus to promote healthy root growth for new grass. Have fun.
Thanks. So fertilize after I place the seed? Or does it not matter?
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Feb 14, 2012
962 posts
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London
crocp8 wrote:
Apr 21st, 2017 1:13 pm
Thanks. So fertilize after I place the seed? Or does it not matter?
Fertilize a few days after seeding or when you see new sprouts. There will be nothing to fertilize if you don't have your seeds sprouting.
Jr. Member
Feb 4, 2010
182 posts
49 upvotes
crocp8 wrote:
Apr 21st, 2017 9:32 am
This is my plan...can someone confirm if this is what I want to do, or can you suggest anything else to buy? I live in Mississauga BTW.

This weekend April 23rd:


1) Mow lawn on shortest setting
2) Rake the eff out of it
3) Aerate front and back lawn
4) Place down top soil (or do I need topdressing???) Can someone confirm? And what is the top soil brand I should be looking for? The stores have too many to pick from
5) Fertilizer....thinking the scotts 30-0-0 ...is this what I want?

In about 2 weeks time (May 13th):


1) Overseed using scotts sun/shade

How does this plan look? is the gap between Step 1 (aerate) and seed of 3 weeks too long?

This is what my grass looks like,
If you're using that fertilizer blend I was told to wait 5-6 before planting grass seed. You could get starter fertilizer and throw that down at the same time (which is what I'm going to do). As for top soil vs top dressing - it's pretty much the same thing, just a different name. It's better to get one with more nutrient (e.g. has some compost) but it's also more expensive so if it's a large area I personally wouldn't bother unless you're OK with spending a lot on it. Rona had a sale for 50L humus mix for $2.99 (regular $5.99).

Also, from everything I read/heard the best time to overseed is September - if you can wait, I'd do it then. I need to put 2 applications this year which is why I'm doing it in the spring and then again in the fall, otherwise I would just do it once in Sep
crocp8 wrote:
Apr 21st, 2017 1:13 pm
Thanks. So fertilize after I place the seed? Or does it not matter?
It does matter - you have to use the right fertilizer depending on when you choose to fertilize. The one you're planning to use - you should do it either several weeks before or after putting grass seed, otherwise use starter fertilizer ...again just going based on what several "experts" have told me.

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