I life in connecticut and it is almost april and we finally thawed out. I have a ragged lawn now and very spotty. I personally feel that its pointless to attack all the bald spots and I was considering completely redoing the lawn.
From the research i have done it seems this is my ideal process.
First, i would have to retill my 13,000 sq ft lawn, since its not bad i was thinking about something like this...
once all is tilled i figure i would use a good 1st step fertilizer and start to seed.
one of the main problems was that i have alot of shade so i was planning on buy dense shade seed.
if i am missing a step please correct me, which is why i am here.
my only questions are:
-is it really necessary to kill all the current grass?
-do i really need to add organics to help better prepare the soil, or is fertilizer sufficient?
-if i do need to kill the grass will early april be too late to reseed?
I would rake out the existing grass, add a GOOD QUALITY seeding top soil to any and all bare spots, then seed with a sun and shade seed unless the entire area is in the shade, then use a shade mix.
If you can get a similar product to Penn Mulch (which we sell at our family owned wholesale landscape supply company) use that on top. Not sure if it's readily available everywhere. It does the same thing as hay, but is superior IMO. It's made up of recycled paper, contains a starter fertilizer which is time released and absorbs water which will help keep the seeds moist as well. And it doesn't need to be raked out once the grass comes in, it will disintegrate. Only issue is it's higher cost, and in heavy rain on slopes it might wash away easier than hay. For sloped areas you can add burlap to prevent run off.
So the bottom line is, if cost is an issue, fix what you have, I wouldn't try and kill it off with any harsh chemicals which would adversely affect the new seedlings. If you want to start over, dig it all up and re soil the whole area first with GOOD QUALITY soil.