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Did I Screw up my lawn??

1688 Views 8 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  jayhawk
Fellow lawn fanatics,

I'm glad to be a part of such an informative forum and look forward to crafting my yard all summer with your input, feedback, and advice. I live just outside ATL on a pretty steep slope in the front and a gentler slope in the rear. I laid zoysia sod in OCT of last year and was excited to get a fresh new lawn after losing the entire yard of fescue to fungus and heat. Another story for another day.

Shortly after the sod went down I purchased a used Trucut H-20 from a friend and was excited to use it. I anxiously awaited the Spring for the opportunity to use the new mower on the new sod and get the fairway lawn I've always wanted. However, I noticed significant undulations on the rear grade and wanted to apply a layer of top dressing to flatten things out; And just to be sure I had the season off to a good start, I did the front as well.

I anxiously awaited the weather to finally warm up and the turf to come out of dormancy after a relatively mild April. At last, consistently higher temps arrived and my appointment was set. Top dressing here we go.....the turf company arrives and the technician immediately points out (2) drainage pipes coming from my roof downspouts and suggested they be rerouted to prevent the water from washing the sand down the slope. I had officially been warned. Impatiently I told him to proceed and that I would call someone out to take care of it.

Several days later we had a significant downpour after which I noticed the sand sliding down the slope and creating ripples. The ripples were more exaggerated in the rear than in the front due to the slow growth of the new sod. The front also had noticeable ripples but recovered at a much faster rate. At this point I began to freak out. Several days passed and after the sand dried I decided to rent a lawn roller to try and roll out some of the grade issues at the front. It definitely made a difference.

I'm nervous that I've not only made the undulations at the rear worse by adding the dressing but also smothered the sod and possibly killed it in some locations.

Before I make any attempts at the rear, I wanted to ask some questions.

Question 1.

Should I actually be concerned about the sod at the rear recovering or am I just being impatient by not giving it the time it actually requires to recover.

Question 2.

Is there any way to respread the existing sand in the rear possibly with a drag mat? Or should should I roll the rear as well? Would I compact the sand and potentially create a more catastrophic result? I'm reluctant to do any thing except continue to cut it at .78

Any help would be much appreciated. At this point I'm concerned about losing another 1500 sf of turf two years straight!

Before top dressing - Front

Top dressing day 1 - Front

Day 11 (5/23)- Front

Before top dressing - Rear

Top dressing day 1 - rear

Day 11 - Rear

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Thanks for the feedback guys. I re-spread and cleaned it up as best I could with a normal plastic lawn rake. To your point @jayhawk with limited sun it's growing painstakingly slow.

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