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btwla 03-26-2007 08:32 AM

new lawn
our yard is sloped in the front and both sides, we are getting ready to plant grass seed (we had top soil brought in). Should we use erosion control blankets or would straw do the trick? We are on a budget so straw would be more logical, but if the blankets are necessary we can allow for the money.

handy man88 03-26-2007 09:42 AM

I think germination blankets give much better results. I've seen lawns that have had straw put down, and results are really spotty. A spotty lawn is an invitation for weeds to take in. If you buy the germination blankets in bulk, as opposed to the 25 ft. length at lowes, the price is much more reasonable compared to buying several 25 ft. rolls.

Since young grass takes several seasons to take in strong, you may want to consider getting sod put in instead and having the sod staked down. Sod obviously yields quicker results, and has stronger root system and is better for making sure grading holds firm if you consistently water twice a day for about 1-2 weeks. Make sure you don't overwater, as the soil underneath sod will wash out. If you put down seed and straw, it is easier washed away and you won't notice until an entire area is missing grass, while the bottom of the slope is growing. Also, young grass burns/dies rather easily, as it's very sensitive to the summer heat. It is much much more preferable to put down grass seed during the fall, rather than the spring.

It generally takes grass seed 2-3 weeks to germinate, assuming there's steady water, warm temperatures over 60F, and sun. If you decide to go with seed anyway, I recommend Scott's starter fertilizer, as topsoil alone doesn't have much nutrients. Check the PH level of your soil also, as you may need to put down some lime if the soil is too acidic.

Sod vs. seed. The cost may be a wash long term, because seed will require several reapplications, time spent, elbow grease, and a few years before you'll get a decent lawn.

btwla 03-26-2007 09:51 AM

We definately can't afford sod, but we can do the germination blankets, we have a big yard. thanks for the help.

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