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i also have clay for soil at my house. i found this out when digging my pond out...it seems as if there is about 6 inchs of topsoil on top of the clay ground. not sure if topsoil is available to you or not but u might try acquiring some making it 6 or more inchs thick on top of your existing clay.then use your barrel to roll it flat.you could also grade your new dirt so that is will drain properly and possibly avoid making a drain although a drain may still be necessary for your property.when choosing your topsoil find one that has the right nutrients for your grass seed to better aid the growth.
 

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Too Short? Cut it Again!
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Well, that planting area has to be graded to fix the drainage first. If it is legal where you are I guess you could install drains going to the street but I could never get away with it any places I have lived in the US.

Your next step has to be to till the soil and fold the amendments into it. It will be some work but you may have to do it with a shovel. Then level it out with rakes.

Just a question? How set are you on a 240 sf lawn? Would some mix of low ground covers, ornamental grasses and so forth work?

By the way is this area sun or shade?
 
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