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Old lawn in a mossy mess


 
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Rocket
Rank attained: Hazel Tree
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Joined: 27 Aug 2010
Posts: 19
Location: The Midlands

PostPosted: Sat Sep 04, 2010 1:24 am    Post subject: Old lawn in a mossy mess Reply with quote

Hi

When I moved to my present house, the lawns wer flat and green. Not so now. There have been cows on it at least 3 times and they managed to knock down a tree and one jumped over the wall (that was interesting to watch).

A neighbour once cut the grass, without my say-so, using a tractor and later told me that it was damp in the centre so there's a bit of a dip in it now. Also the guy who empties the septic tank has previously driven across it, as has another person in a whacking great tractor.

Coupled to the above, about two years ago I was away, on and off, for 6 weeks and the weather was wet for a good while afterwards. When I finanaly got to it, it was a mess, particularly the front lawn.

I have cut it since, sort of regularlly and used moss killer, weed and feecd - so far as I can gather it did nothing but turn some of the moss sbrown.

I decided to cut the grass yesterday and the lawnmower packed up. My ride-on is away being tried out by a potential buyer. Lawnmower fixer arrived to collect the packed-up mower (needs a new belt or drive thingy) and we talked lawns. He remarked on the moss and I thought raking it would make a change from digging so I started with the grass rake.

For the small area that I raked, the amount of moss was amazing. So too was the tiny number of blades of gras that remained.. Later I sat down and used a small hand-rake, just for the fun of it.

Soooo, I found mention here of a scarifier and am asking for advice please regarding getting one that can be used by an 8 stone weakling. Is it a good idea and if so, what to look for?

Once the moss is gone, can I use gras seed and let it be or is there something else I ought to do?

If I can get the lawns halfway decent, I will take more care of them but I don't particularly want a 'bowling green' (becauase of the effort involved and because there's a good half acre in them). I'm happy with daisies, cowlsips etc growing in it, though not dandelions as they make dips. I would just like it to be more green than brown.

There is also moss on the driveway. I've cut a few tree branches aas I thought the shade was helping the moss. I used moss killer according to the instructions (or I thought I did) and the lot was used up before I was a quarter of the way through the job. So I blasted it off with a power washer. I now know a power wasaher can create holes in the tarmac but as it's already happened, I sede no reason not to do the same thing again this year?

Finally, one part of the lawn runs by high trees, grows very slowly and I don't mind that not being so great as I think of it more like pature-land.

If you read this far, I appreciate your patience and endurance.

Rocket
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qwerty?
Rank attained: Hazel Tree
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Joined: 13 Mar 2010
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Location: Mayo

PostPosted: Sat Sep 04, 2010 10:15 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds like your lawn has been through the mill.

How big is your lawn? I bought the tow behind scarifier I was asking about on another thread. (It did a good job on my lawn.)

If you have a ride on it would be a good investment, as the hire one would take a very long time on a big lawn, and if you hired it 3 times it would cost as much as the tow behind one.

I'd imagine you need to scarify your lawn first, then treat it for the moss, feed it and reseed patches if necessary.
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qwerty?
Rank attained: Hazel Tree
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 04, 2010 10:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is the one I bought. http://www.mowdirect.co.uk/acatalog/AGRI-FAB-40---SPRING-TINE-DETHATCHER--45-02941-.html?s=1592
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Rocket
Rank attained: Hazel Tree
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Joined: 27 Aug 2010
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Location: The Midlands

PostPosted: Sun Sep 05, 2010 12:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Qwerty

I can onlly guess at the size of my lawns. I have now cleared 2 barrow loads of moss from about 4 foot by 20 foot If I do the same another 3 times I will have cleared about one thied of the fornt lawn. The back lawn (irgnoring the side part under the trees) is 2 or 3 times bigger.

I read your reply earlier today and have told the potential buiyer of my ride on that it is no longer for sale. Please don't take that personally as when my mower packed up I began to question the sense behind selling the ride-on.

I had no idea that you could put something on the back of it and imagined I would need a separate machine thingy. Actually, I've never used the ride-on on the front lawn - yet.

Do you think a scarifier would really pull out moss amd matted stuff that has had a few years to establish itself?

As it chucked down rain this morning, I could think of nothing else to do today but rake up moss and what I am getting is not so much a lawn with bare patches as soil with occasional patches of grass.

Thanks for the tip about using moss killer after scarifying.

I had a look at the site you mentioned but it is in sterlng so I presume you're up the North. any road, the guy fixing my lawnmower is coming back on Tuesday so I'll talk to him about buying a scarifier like yours to attach to the ride on. I bought the ride on from him so he ought to know.

I am sorry for any typing errors in this and previous posts. Hopefully, on Tuesday I will get glasses that mean I can read what I am actually typing!

Rocket
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qwerty?
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PostPosted: Sun Sep 05, 2010 7:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

They delivered to Ireland for £30, so it came to a total of €140. Cheapest one I found in Ireland was €175 delivered.

I didn't have any moss, just a lot of thatch after last winter, and it has ripped up quiet a lot of that with two passes in opposite directions. I would imagine it would pull some moss out, and the moss killer will take care of the rest.

It never occurred to me that you might not have a hitch for your ride on, check if it is possible to get one for it.
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Rocket
Rank attained: Hazel Tree
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Location: The Midlands

PostPosted: Sun Sep 05, 2010 11:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Qwerty

I wanted to get outside before it rained today so pulled up some more moss. The thatch you spoke of explains why my lawn is so much higher than it used to be. Some parts of the lawn are so spongy you could almost bounce on it.

I attacked it with gusto and now suspect that by the time it's done there will be nothing left. The only bits of grass left in the patch I have been working on seem to be that tough grass that grows faster than the rest. So, it looks like I'll be seeding a new front lawn.

The lawnmower man is coming in a day aor two and I'll check with him about a hitch for the scarifier. As the moss is on top of the thatch hopefully it will all come out together.

That sounds like a good price and I'll follow it up if it will attach to my ride-on.

Thanks for your help. When I started on the lawn I was quite nervous about what I was doing but now I know about the thatch etc I've no qualms about pulling it up.
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