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Old 08-18-2010, 11:00 PM   #16
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How to improve soil under an existing lawn


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Originally Posted by bob22 View Post
YUP! I have seen a lot of similiar reports. I use it anyway, as i figure it can't hurt, but i don't go crazy with it, it does seem to help the areas where my dog "helps water the lawn"

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Old 08-20-2010, 04:42 PM   #17
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How to improve soil under an existing lawn


I had a soil test done at the local nursery. The store clerk told me to sprinkle lime on the lawn.

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Old 08-21-2010, 08:12 PM   #18
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How to improve soil under an existing lawn


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Gypsum probably won't hurt at all, but IMO topdressing will do a lot more good, and pound for pound is a heck of a lot cheaper.
May I ask the quality of this topdressing? This is a rather generic term which one could use for anything applied to the surface in a thin layer whether it be sand, topsoil, gypsum, manure or whatever (without further digression into the definition of "thin"). I have not found this to be true in buying gypsum by the pallet vs good topsoil by the dumptruck load.

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I've done a ton of research on this
I've done some research but I have a lot of commercial experience with other people's money based on that research.
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Old 08-21-2010, 09:14 PM   #19
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How to improve soil under an existing lawn


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May I ask the quality of this topdressing? This is a rather generic term which one could use for anything applied to the surface in a thin layer whether it be sand, topsoil, gypsum, manure or whatever (without further digression into the definition of "thin"). I have not found this to be true in buying gypsum by the pallet vs good topsoil by the dumptruck load.


I've done some research but I have a lot of commercial experience with other people's money based on that research.
I have never bought gypsum by the ballet, but i have bought by the bag at the home centers and such At close to $8 for a 40lb bag its more expensive than any topsoil i have ever seen.

It's great that you have experience, but just because you say you've done it, doesn't mean that there isn't a better way
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Old 08-22-2010, 10:31 AM   #20
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How to improve soil under an existing lawn


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May I ask the quality of this topdressing? This is a rather generic term which one could use for anything applied to the surface in a thin layer whether it be sand, topsoil, gypsum, manure or whatever (without further digression into the definition of "thin"). I have not found this to be true in buying gypsum by the pallet vs good topsoil by the dumptruck load.


I've done some research but I have a lot of commercial experience with other people's money based on that research.
Myself I use what my local garden center calls a "leaf mulch". It's a light compost and the place I get it from is highly knowledgeable and only carries quality products.

Not sure why cost of gypsum is being compared to top soil as they would usually be for totally different purposes...one to amend existing conditions and the other usually to replace.

You've done research and have commercial experience......and ?????? Not saying the following applies to you at all...but I have to say a very high percentage of the "professional landscapers" (ie. experienced) don't have the first clue about their chosen area of work. My wife and I do all our own on our 1/2 acre....receive numerous compliments and even awards from time to time....and know far more than "most" professionals with experience. You may be an exception to the rule...but "experience" does not necessarily equate to "competence".
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Old 08-22-2010, 07:58 PM   #21
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How to improve soil under an existing lawn


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but I have to say a very high percentage of the "professional landscapers" (ie. experienced) don't have the first clue about their chosen area of work.
I call those guys "contractors" and take offense (not to you) if someone associates me with the same. They are in it to make money. I do it because I enjoy it. Just because someone cuts grass with a $10,000 Exmark, it doesn't make him a professional. He just has an expensive lawnmower that he charges you $85 hour to operate. If someone hasnt' "been there, done that," doesn't know the difference between perlite and vermiculite, black spot from rust, or nutsedge from poison ivy and/or hasn't taken the time to get an education and learn what effect pH can have on nutrient uptake, I don't call him/her a professional.

My father was raised on a farm and my mother was a floral designer when I was growing up. I did homework at a wreath picking table. But back to the point- the University of Georgia seems to think that I know what I am doing, at least according to the paper. And I have won awards and compliments from the citizens (who pay my salary) and neighbors for my flower beds. And I agree that you don't have to have a degree to know what you are doing, just caring to make the world a little nicer, whether in your own yard, through a vocation, or volunteering.

My commercial experience just enables me to try things that I might not spend the money on at home. Like buying fifteen bags of perlite to loosen a 200 ft2 bed or a ton of Nature's Helper. I don't like sand because I don't like my hands in the grit. I like organics that feel good. If the soil feels good to me, then the plants will like it.
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Old 09-19-2010, 11:15 PM   #22
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How to improve soil under an existing lawn


I am in GA and have a zoysia lawn that was just hanging in there due to the drought over the years. The trees have gotten so big and I have soooo many leaves that I mow/mulch them into the grass. One particular area got a ton last fall!!! That area this year has grown and greened up like gang busters. I plan to send the leaves to another area this year to see if it helps. Stay organic and your soil will improve.
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Old 09-26-2010, 11:55 AM   #23
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How to improve soil under an existing lawn


Peat moss gets my sinuses all unhappy. For any soil improvement I use coir. That is not as acidic. And it does not wick all of the water out of surrounding soil like peat moss does. I also use rabbit feed, not just the poop, though that probably would be great in some amount. The feed has mostly alfalfa--good vegetation matter, very low sodium, trace minerals--including iodine, the 3 N-P-K in small amounts, and is easy to handle. I dig that, almost every year, into my garden beds along with leaves and small twigs that are around. The season's worth of kitchen trimmings have been dug-in around the yard in possible, future, growing-bed sites. I like DirtDoctor.com
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Old 09-30-2010, 12:44 PM   #24
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How to improve soil under an existing lawn


If all else fails, I suppose you could rent a sod cutter, tiller, and re-multch one section at a time.

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