How to Restore a Weed-Ridden Lawn
LESLIE: Theresa in Oregon, you’ve got The Money Pit. How can we help you today?
THERESA: I have a problem with my lawn; it’s a mess. And we are trying to decide – oh, it’s full of tall grass and moss and crabgrass and has poor drainage. And so, one of the things my husband said that happened was is that when we put the lawn in years ago – it’s been about 15 years – we got a lot of potting soil donated from a commercial garden/landscape place. And so we think that might have had part – been part of the problem: it’s potting soil rather than solid dirt.
So we’re trying to figure out whether we should rototill the whole thing out and start over or we should just reseed and keep weed-and-feeding or something.
TOM: What about doing a Roundup restoration to it?
LESLIE: I like that: a Roundup restoration.
TOM: That’s actually a process that is pretty common.
TOM: You apply Roundup to the entire lawn and pretty much zap the whole thing, so you kill everything that’s there.
TOM: And as the existing grass and the crabgrass and all the stuff that’s mixed there dies away, you can seed in – right into that with fresh seed. And that seed will take. The old, dead grass will help hold it in place.
And if you do it now, you’ve actually got a couple of months of decent weather for the grass to start to take hold. And this way, it’ll grow now, it’ll grow in the very early spring and hopefully develop thick-enough roots to be able to sustain the first, warm summer that it encounters. But that’s why now is a good time to do it. And when you’ve got some lawn that’s in that bad a shape, a Roundup restoration is a good way to go.
I did that for my entire backyard. And it looked a little scary for a while but it turned green pretty fast after that and ended up being a great lawn for us.
THERESA: Wow. OK. So just kill the whole thing off and start over with seed.
TOM: Kill it off and start again.
THERESA: OK. And any particular recommendation on seed?
TOM: I don’t have a particular recommendation on seed. Any name brand, I think, will do.
THERESA: Any name brand. OK. Very good. Well, that helps a lot.
TOM: Good luck with that project. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT.