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I need some urgent advice about laying a lawn and preparing a flowered

(6 Posts)
missrose Wed 03-Jul-13 08:07:37

I've just had my garden cleared by a team of builders who removed a massive concrete base, old shed, rotting fencing and a gravel path.

The new fencing is up and the new paving slabs arrive tomorrow. The builders are also putting down some topsoil and laying turf. The new path is about three inches higher than the lawn and when finished will all be level.

What do I need to do to prepare the area for lawn? The lawn will be where the old concrete base was. Also, I think the builders have used the gravel from the gravel path to raise the level of the flowerbeds and are planning to put topsoil on top of this. Is this a bad idea? How many inches of topsoil should we laying? I'm a bit worried that there is a lot of gravel where we want the flowerbed, and stones where we want the lawn.

Do we really need a roller to make sure the area is smooth before laying the lawn?
I think they will be ready to lay the lawn in the next couple of days so really want to check it is done properly now so that I don't have problems later.

LittenTree Wed 03-Jul-13 20:25:47

No expert, here, but I'd roller the lawn-space so they can topsoil it flat. I'm a little bit surprised that the builders say a 3" discrepancy will be filled with a bit of topsoil and the turf- you'd want the end result even with the surround for mowing purposes!

I wouldn't worry too much about grit/gravel in the garden providing the soil there is 'ok' in itself. I'd want to see a good 6" of topsoil providing the substrata isn't, like in my garden, solid clay!

I 'get' your worries: you want it to be right!

missrose Thu 04-Jul-13 07:11:32

Thanks for your reply Litten.They are great builders and have done a fab job but I think their gardening skills are a little bit limited!

I shall speak to them about a roller and 6 inches for the of
flowerbeds - I'd rather pay a bit more now and get it usable.

I've been reading that gravel helps with drainage but could you have too much? I have no idea how well plants will grow as there was a huge lleylandii dominating the whole garden which we removed earlier this year. I guess it might be acidic but fingers crossed I can grow something lovely. I'm so excited about the planting and getting my toddler involved!

Suttonmum1 Thu 04-Jul-13 07:16:39

Don't know where you are but I'd be tempted to put off laying lawn until later in the year as you need to keep it well watered.

HelenaK Thu 04-Jul-13 07:35:06

We laid a lawn back in March. Important thing to do:
- work out the volume you need to raise the height and then you can calculate how much top soil to get (we needed 2.5t!). This is critical for getting the height you want
- spend a good amount of time squashing down the soil and levelling it out (the more you do this, the more stable the lawn will be, and it should stay flat). Use a soil rake, planks of wood (which you jump on!) and a roller if you have one.
- lay the turf like bricks to minimise the big seams
- water it A LOT for the first couple of weeks
Good luck!

missrose Thu 04-Jul-13 19:40:27

Wow, thanks so much Sutton and Helena, some very useful tips there. I'm now obsessed with getting a perfect lawn. I think the builders just want to get finished now but hopefully they will do it properly.

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