Bare or dead patches on the lawn could be a nuisance and often let your garden down. Fortunately, it is not difficult to learn how to repair lawn.
From compaction to shade, there are a few techniques that you can try to restore the beauty in your landscape. Indeed, lawn repair is a perfect way to get rid of weedy, thin, or bare patches which often show up in some areas in your garden.
Common causes of dead, bald patches on your lawn
Even when you care for your lawn carefully, dead and bald spots may show up from time to time. Let’s take a look at a few common reasons so that you can take appropriate preventive measures:
Urine from wild animals or pets
When wild animals or your pets urinate on the lawn, it will burn and leave straw-like, brown patches. If you catch it, you can prevent this issue by watering the patch immediately.
Some pests like beetles or grubs might infest your lawn and cause dead spots. They eat the grasses’ roots and leave nothing for them to grow.
Some lawn diseases like snow mould could also kill your lawn. The most common sign is the white webbing on the surface, which indicates a fungal disease. A good care routine is necessary to prevent this issue.
Another cause of dead lawn patches is the spillage of herbicides or pesticides. This usually results in irregular shapes on the surface due to a high concentration of chemicals.
If you apply too much fertiliser on your lawn, it might burn the leaves and cause dead spots. Thus, it is advisable to use fertiliser in steady movements and water thoroughly when it spills.
Stones or rocks under the lawn might heat up during the summer and burn the grasses. The only way to deal with it is to dig the lawn and check for the presence of any debris or big stones underneath.
What you’ll need for lawn repair
- Rake, Raker or scarifier
- Seed spreader
- Grass seed
- Multi-purpose compost or topsoil
- Lawn roller
How to repair lawn
Basically, there are two common methods to restore bald, dead patches on the surface of your lawn: reseed and patch with sod. Here are step-by-step guides for both options.
1. Reseed the lawn
This is a simple method which is inexpensive and requires only 30 minutes. The only drawback is that it might take a few weeks for new patches to blend into the remaining parts of the lawn fully.
Use a rake to remove dead grasses and debris from the area
Break the soil up with a cultivator or hard-toothed rake. If the soil is compacted, consider using am aeration tool to make it simpler.
Add about 5 centimetres of good soil or compost, then use a rake to mix it with the existing soil.
Even out the lawn surface and spread the mix to the adjacent areas.
Evenly spread grass seed across the area. Make sure it covers the surface thickly. However, make sure the seeds don’t pile up on each other.
Lightly rake the seeds to a depth of 1.5 centimetres, then compact the soil with your feet or a roller. Use pinwheels or reflective tape to prevent birds from taking away your seeds.
Water the seedling area lightly to make sure it is moist during the day. During the summer, you should cover with a burlap sheet to provide shade and keep your seeds from drying.
Wait a few weeks for the seeds to sprout and grow. Mow the area to make sure its colour can blend in well with the rest of the lawn.
2. Patch with sod
If you have several bare spots to repair, then using a roll of sod might be a quicker method. You can easily purchase it from any garden stores.
Cut a patch of grass sod with a garden knife or shovel. Make sure it is a bit larger than the dead spot in the lawn. Ideally, the patch needs to extend at least 5 centimetres beyond the bare spot’s edges. Place the sod directly over the area.
Trace around the patch of sod with a shovel into the area around the dead spot.
Remove the patch of sod, then use a cultivator to take off the healthy grass around the dead spot. Slightly dig down and remove the soil so that the patch of sod can be located at the same level as the remaining parts of the lawn.
Use a cultivator, rake, or shovel to break up the soil. Make sure it is loose and nice so that the grassroots in the sod would grow quickly into the ground.
Put the patch of sod in the excavated spot, then walk on it constantly to press it down.
Water immediately. For the next few days, water 2 or 3 times per day until the grass starts growing actively.
After one or two weeks, the sod will gradually become a part of the lawn.
This short clip will show you more about working with grass sod.