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We bought a new home with no turf established in the backyard. Do you offer any advice for putting in our own yard?

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A

Establishing a lawn can be a daunting task - consider and discuss your needs and resources before deciding how to proceed.

How much money are you willing to spend? How much work and time can you devote to this job? What is your timeline? What other resources are available to you (truck, trailer, tools, etc.)

The most economical way to grow a lawn is to direct seed. You can buy seed in bulk from Granite Seed in Lehi or many other sources. Plant a blend of grass cultivars so that you will have some grass seedlings emerging quickly (to help prevent soil erosion and seed runoff), some cultivars greening up early in spring, and some cultivar(s) tolerating hot summer temperatures.

Read the USU Extension publication "Turfgrass Cultivars for Utah" at http://extension.usu.edu/files/publications/publication/HG_Grass_2004_01.pdf

University of Minnesota's Sustainable Urban Landscape Information Series describes lawn establishment very well. See their webpage at http://www.sustland.umn.edu/maint/newlawn.htm  This webpage will help you decide your approach to establishing your new lawn.

One note - when possible, amend native soil with good quality organic matter. The best buy is compost from the landfill (both the Trans-Jordan and the Salt Lake City landfill sell compost). However thickly you apply the organic matter, mix it into the native soil twice that depth. This will pay off with a more vigorous and healthy lawn down the road.

 

 

Posted on 4 May 2007

Maggie Wolf
Horticulture Agent, Salt Lake County

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