Delky
Newly Registered
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2012 3:56 pm

Total amateur wants to convert weedy backyard to green lawn

Hi Everyone,

I am a first-time homeowner. My new backyard is completely overgrown with different kinds of weeds interspersed with bare dirt. The weeds seem mostly to be ground cover (clover, some vine, mostly these small plants that look like little spades). I would love to rip out all the growth and plant a lawn from seed but I have no idea how to go about removing the extensive weeds before starting the lawn. Any suggestions?

To complicate matters, there is a large tree in the middle of the yard which shades most of it, as well as several trees around the perimeter which also provide shade. I've read that unless there is at least some direct sunlight, grass will not grow, even the "shade-preferring" kind. Should I at least try to seed the whole yard first or immediately resort to seeding only the sunny parts and planting some sort of shade garden everywhere else? If the latter, should I still try to kill the weeds where I'm not planting grass or just cover them with mulch and kill them that way?

Thanks for helping out a complete novice! :lol:

Dr Blade
Full Member
Posts: 19
Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:46 pm
Location: Ct

Hi Delky

The best and most economical method is to kill all the vegetation with roundup, leave the dead plants / organic matter then rent a slice seeder and slice in two directions, spread seed / fertilizer and water, water, water. This needs to be done in the fall around September.

As far as that tree goes, I would limb up as many branches as possible, also thin out as much as possible. You will find if the shade is too much the grass will start to die down in the summer next year. You need about 4-5 hours of direct / filter light for grass to grow, I would mix in more fescue in that area.

hope this helps!!

Delky
Newly Registered
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Jun 06, 2012 3:56 pm

Hey Dr. Blade,

Awesome, thanks for the advice. I was wondering, though, what are the relative pros and cons to using round-up as opposed to a weed and feed?

With regard to the tree, is there a good rule of thumb for what limbs to cut or not cut? I just want to make sure I don't damage the tree too much me being an amateur and all. Thanks so much for your help!

Delky

Dr Blade
Full Member
Posts: 19
Joined: Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:46 pm
Location: Ct

Ahh, the weed and feed does nothing but kill a few broad leaf weeds and feed the rest. The roundup will kill everything down to the root, so it will never grow again, you need to do this about 2 weeks before you plan to seed. Now you will have all grass seed emerging and no weeds or anything else after you plant the new grass seed. You leave the dead weeds/ grass you sprayed with the round up because it protects the seed as a mulch.

as far as the tree, prune off the lower branches so there will be more angled sun that will reach the grass, also in the upper parts of the tree selectively remove some branches so more filter light reaches the grass.

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