Preparing your ground
Laying turf is like most things in life – it is better to be prepared. So, before your turf is delivered it is best to ensure that you are ready for it – prepping your area in advance is essential. If you are re-turfing a lawn you will need to remove the grass that is already there, and this can be done using a spade and digging under it with a slicing motion that works horizontally. If you have a large area of lawn to remove it may be more economical (and easier!) to hire a turf cutter.
The soil that you will be laying the turf on needs to be worked and turned over to a depth of around 15 centimetres. Any stones, twigs, etc should be removed and the area made as level as possible without flattening the soil. Freshly turned soil gives your new turf the best start and makes it easy for your new lawn to start rooting straight away. It is not uncommon to buy in a turf base soil to help prepare your area if you can’t create a suitable working area to the depth required.
Ordering and storing your turf
For any job that you take on, it is best to use the freshest turf available. Fresh turf is easier to work with and is more likely to root quickly and efficiently. Remember that turf is lots of living plants knitted together, so the less stress placed on it the better. Arranging for your turf to be delivered on the day that you will use it is best – especially if the ground is already prepared as above so you can get to work straight away. When you are laying turf it is important to keep the remaining rolls out of direct sunlight to prevent the roots from drying up.
Dampen the area that you will be turfing before you start. Turf should be laid one roll at a time. Start from a straight edge and carefully unroll your turf making sure that each roll touches the soil underneath. Good quality turf should not break or crumble as the existing roots will have already knitted together to create a natural, tough membrane. Work in strips, and tuck each new roll of turf in as close as possible to the one before. Turf should follow a similar pattern to brick work, with each roll ending half way down a previous strip. When the turf matures, you will get a natural looking grassy lawn with no visible joining areas. Any surplus turf should be carefully cut to the desired length or shape.
Maintaining your turf
It is incredibly important that you water your turf in as soon as you have put it down.
The existing roots search for water, starting the rooting process into your soil.
Watering to a depth of 100 mm is recommended by The Turf Grass Growers association (TGA) and it is important to keep the turf area damp until you are sure that it has rooted properly. You can check how damp the ground is by gently lifting a corner of your turf, but be careful as you don’t want to rip any new roots that are establishing.
While you do want to keep your turf damp, it is important that you don’t over water it and create boggy conditions. Be sure to check the dampness of your turf if it has rained over night as you might not need to water it again. Daily watering should be done in the early morning or evening. Watering at this time gives it time to penetrate the root system, rather than drying off and burning in the sun.
Within 28 days of laying turf it should now be fully established, giving you a luscious lawn that only requires general maintenance like regular cutting and watering.
REMEMBER: We’re always here, so if you have any questions on laying turf, give us a call: 0141 889 1455