If your lawn has more weeds and bare spots than grass, you can get a lush new lawn quickly if you put down sod. The key to success with new sod is to start with a healthy soil base. In fact, prepping the soil takes much more work than unrolling the sod. Whether you hire a contractor to install your new lawn or do it yourself, these are the steps that must be done.
Strip The Lawn
The first step is to clean your yard of everything but soil. First, you'll have to pick up all the debris in your yard. Next comes the hard work of digging up weeds and grass. If your yard is fairly small, you can use lawn tools like a hoe and shovel. If your yard is large, or if you want to avoid hard labor, you can rent a sod cutter. This is a power tool that slices off the roots of grass and weeds just under the soil, so it is easier to remove them. If you're going to use a hoe, you may want to wait until it rains or after you water the lawn heavily. Moist, loose soil is much easier to work with than dry soil that is compacted and hard.
Till The Soil
Once your yard is bare soil, it's time to use a tiller. You can rent a garden tiller if you don't already own one. A tiller cuts into the soil to a depth of a few inches and breaks it apart. This makes it easier to mix in topsoil later on. As you break up the soil with the tiller, remove rocks, roots, and other debris that come to the surface so nothing gets in the way of the roots of the new sod.
Add Topsoil And Amendments
If your lawn is unhealthy now, it could be a sign your soil is not able to support grass because it doesn't have enough nutrients or because it is too sandy or has too much clay. Before you begin the process of installing sod, and even before you decide on what type of grass to put down, you should have your soil tested. This test reveals the composition of the soil and its nutrient level. When you know the results, you can compare them to the requirements for the type of grass you want to plant. This lets you know what kind of amendments you need to add to your soil.
For the healthiest sod, you'll probably want to put down a layer of topsoil before you lay the sod. You can have topsoil delivered to your home. All you'll have to do is spread it around the yard and work it into your soil with a rake or tiller. Once that's done, you can add any amendments that are needed such as peat, lime, or fertilizer. After these steps, your yard is ready for the new sod. You can buy the sod in rolls and unroll it on your lawn, or you can buy it in squares and line the squares up in rows.
Prepping the soil and installing new sod is a simple process, but it is hard work. In addition to manual labor, you'll need to rent machines to help you do the job. For that reason, it might be easier to let a contractor prep your yard, spread the topsoil, and lay down the new sod. Either way, when the job is done, you'll have a healthy, lush lawn without having to wait weeks or months for seeds to grow. To learn more about topsoil, contact a company like Purdy Topsoil & Gravel.