Why Should I Install Turf?
Laying turf provides an easy way to instantly install grass on your lawn. As opposed to laying seeds, you won’t have to wait for the grass to grow before enjoying the lawn.
It’s easy to install and tends to last many years as long as it is maintained correctly.
How to Lay Turf Yourself
Buy your turf on the day it is going to be laid so that it remains in its best condition. Ensure that you have completed the preparation steps listed below before you buy the turf.
Start laying your turf along a straight edge. Use wood planks to make this step easier. Overlap the turf over the edge so that it can be cut neatly when finished. All you need to do is line your turf up and unroll it all the way.
Once it’s unrolled all the way, pat it down to settle the turf down into the soil.
Then, get your second turf and line it up to the straight edge. You want to ensure that it’s really tightly butted up to the first piece of turf before you begin unrolling it.
Repeat the above step across the entire length of the lawn but be sure to stagger the joints on new rows to produce an even coverage.
Use a rake to tamp the turf down as you go along.
Once all of the turf is laid, and your lawn is completely covered, it’s now time to cut the edging. Get a very sharp knife and carefully cut the turf along the edging.
Cut away any excess so that you can clearly see what you’re doing and be incredibly careful when using the knife.
Tap the edge of the turf down into place as you go along.
Once you’ve completed the above steps, tamp down the entire lawn once again with a rake.
Finally, water the turf thoroughly with a sprinkler.
Wait at least 2-3 weeks before walking on the lawn as it will need time to root.
Tools to Lay Turf
- Tape Measure
- Cutting Knife
- Planks of Wood
Safety Equipment to Lay Turf
- Gardening gloves
Materials to Lay Turf
- Gravel or Grit
- Compost or manure
- Rolls of Turf
How to Prepare for Laying Turf
To prepare for laying turf, you will need to start by stripping away the old lawn ready for the installation of the new one.
If the old lawn area has a lot of weeds in it, treat it with weed killer first and allow time for the weeds to completely die before conditioning the soil.
You want to dig out the soil across the whole area and turn it using a fork to a depth of around 6 inches. Remove any stones and weeds that you find during this process.
Sprinkle some compost or manure over the surface of the soil to allow it to retain more moisture. Fork this into the soil to lock it in.
Once you have dug over all of the soil, you then want to firm it and level it. Walk up and down the entire surface of the lawn to get rid of any air pockets and flatten it down.
Once you’ve done this, rake the surface to even it out and then walk over it again to ensure it’s completely flattened out.
Check that the soil surface is in line with the edging strips and that it’s level before laying the turf.
Once you’ve completed the above steps, leave the area for several weeks so that the rain can get on it and it really flattens down.
On the day that you’re ready to lay the turf, mix in some fertiliser so that the lawn is prepared and to encourage good new lawn growth.
Sprinkle the fertiliser across the surface of the area and then rake it in. Then, you are ready to lay your new turf.
You will need to measure the length and width of the area so that you know how much turf you need to order to cover the whole area.
Do this using a tape measure. When you order your turf, always add on an extra 10% so that you’ve got enough in case of any mistakes or miscalculations.
Types of Lawn Turf
There are several different types of lawn turf to choose from. The most common type of turf for domestic homes is traditional turf.
This is the type of turf that you will see in people’s gardens or front lawns. Below is a list of the different types of turf:
This type of turf is usually a mixture of lawn grasses. This is the most common type of grass for domestic purposes and is considered to be the best turf.
Traditional turf works well in several areas but especially well for front lawns and back lawns. This type of turf can be bought at most DIY stores in the UK.
Fine turf is a neat and velvety looking turf that can most often be found on bowling greens. It features very thin leaves and a light green colour.
Fine turf is usually mowed quite close to the ground and looks very neat. Fine turf requires more maintenance than other types of turf and will usually need to be mowed around 4-5 times per week.
Windflower turf looks pretty ordinary at first but should be left for several weeks to grow.
In its prime, wildflower turf grows to about knee height and will be full of beautiful wild flowers. This type of turf is great for attracting bees and insects.
How to Maintain Turf
Once your turf is installed, it is important that you maintain it regularly. Here are some of the different turf maintenance jobs you should conduct regularly.
You should try to mow your lawn once a fortnight or every ten days. This will ensure your grass looks neat and maintains consistent growth.
To do this, you should invest in a high-quality lawn mower that will last a long time.
After laying new turf, you should water the grass once or twice a week in the first two weeks after installation.
You can then slowly reduce this to once every two days in the third and four weeks, and eventually after six weeks, you should water the grass just once a week.
Q: When is the best time to lay turf?
A: The best time to lay turf is mid-autumn, when the soil is not too moist or frosty.
Q: How long do I need to wait before walking on a new lawn?
A: You should wait at least 2-3 weeks before walking on a new lawn as the turf needs time to completely root.
Q: How much extra turf should I buy just in case?
A: You should always buy at least 10% more turf than your lawn measurements just in case of a miscalculation or damage.
Q: What should I do if there are gaps in my turf?
A: You can either cut a small piece of turf and place it in the gap, or you can put some compost in the gap and then fill it with some lawn seeds, which will then germinate in the gap.
Q: What is Astro Turf?
A: Astro turf is an artificial type of grass that is designed to look like real grass. It gives the appearance of a real lawn but doesn’t require the same amount of maintenance as a real grass lawn.