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Article: Starting a lawn the hard way: If its green .....mow it!

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binibusybee
Osgoode, ON
(Zone 5b)

April 28, 2011
6:17 AM

Post #8525869

I'm also a gardening addict! As an early retired Art teacher (I don't have the relevant qualifications here), i have made my garden my creative outlet. We moved to southern Ontario (Canada) almost 6 years ago, where we bought our own home on a 1.5 acre plot. There was a large amount of established lawn, some flowerbeds and lots of cedar forest/tangle!
Over the years I have started a lot of new lawns!! Being on very rocky (e.g. everything from pebbles to tombstone-size) clay soil, i have needed truckloads of topsoil for this purpose - you can only dig out the worst rocks, and clay gets too hard and compacted in the summer too. I can share in the wonder of watching that first green fuzz of emerging grass seeds, and the frustration of keeping the space clear of other wanna-be settlers - especially those clumps of native grass with the enormous root system, that leave craters when you pull them out!! My husband is the one who moans about the weeds in the lawn and goes out with his dandelion-removal-tool which leaves large holes behind! When he is in the mood that is. But our lawn takes about an hour to mow with a lawn tractor, so you can imagine the amount of weeds we have. Hence my motto: if its green, mow it! That excludes thistles by the way! On another note, and this confirms the comment made by another reader : hot and dry weather is not good for starting grass seed. Too much water is not a problem but too little is the end! Grass seedlings grow even in very wet soil, like previous years sprouts, merrily growing in the spring bog! But hot and dry will make your efforts wasted. In Zimbabwe (Southern Africa), everyone used the runners from Kikuyu grass for starting a lawn. It was a pretty haphazard looking affair for starters, all these little trenches with bits of root buried in them, but eventually with enough water, usually after the rains started, the stuff would proliferate! Kikuyu roots are pretty tough and drought resistent, I guess - I never saw any grass seed for sale, but that might have been because there was a general shortage of all sorts of stuff.
The picture shows a chunk of garden, where the grass was churned up by the machinery digging our pond. This was in late May. This is the "Before Pic". I will add an "After-Pic" too.
binibusybee
Osgoode, ON
(Zone 5b)

April 28, 2011
6:19 AM

Post #8525874

Here is the same lot a few month later! Green 'stuff' really takes off here in summer!!

Thumbnail by binibusybee
Click the image for an enlarged view.

binibusybee
Osgoode, ON
(Zone 5b)

April 28, 2011
6:22 AM

Post #8525883

The 'before -picture' is missing!! Here goes!

Thumbnail by binibusybee
Click the image for an enlarged view.

adinamiti

adinamiti
Balotesti
Romania

April 28, 2011
10:51 AM

Post #8526366

Bee, congratulations! Your lawn and flower beds are beautiful! You and your DH sure worked hard to have all that.
Is that you in the picture?
Thanks for sharing your experience. Your advice are very much appreciated.

Adina
binibusybee
Osgoode, ON
(Zone 5b)

May 3, 2011
5:53 AM

Post #8536426

Hello Adina
Thanks for your compliments. Yes, the little round lady in the picture is me. I do most of the gardening around here - the men (my husband and 2 sons) have other priorities. My cats enjoy the garden and the numerous rocks to perch on though. I'm just starting to plan for this new season - we are having a late start here in Ontario!

Sabine

adinamiti

adinamiti
Balotesti
Romania

May 3, 2011
1:35 PM

Post #8537339

Sabine, nice to meet you again!LOL The compliments are well deserved, your garden looks awesome! I also do most of the gardening and my son and daughter also have other things to do!LOL But I have high hopes on my grandson who seems to love plants at his almost 1 year old age, to his Mom's dispare!LOL
Happy Gardening!

Adina

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Other Article: Starting a lawn the hard way Threads you might be interested in:

SubjectThread StarterRepliesLast Post
Boy, you are dedicated! sallyg 11 Apr 27, 2011 8:20 AM
Yep... hustonprincess 3 Apr 28, 2011 12:23 AM


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