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Old 05-24-2015, 02:32 PM
671 posts, read 706,348 times
Reputation: 882


So I'm a relatively new home owner and trying to improve my lawn.

Front yard: Front yard has pretty good coverage, a lot of grass, few bare spots. However, half the lawn has a lot of dead spots. The lawn maintenance guy who does my neighbor told me I was cutting it too short and the sun was drying out the grass, and that there was a lot of loose dead grass that was choking out the live grass. He suggested thatching, and it made sense so he is going to do that for me next weekend to get rid of the dead grass.

Back yard: Backyard has a lot of bare spots. My GF says it's mostly weeds (I think it's a different type of grass), I have it cut right now. There also appears to be moss growing in sports? One of the bigger bare spots is under a pine tree. We tried planting seeds in there (and a few other spots on the side of the house) and it's not growing there, yet growing in other places. It's too acidic, I believe.

Side yards: Side of the house is okay. We just planted some seeds in an area we "re-structured" and the grass is sprouting up now.

What I've done so far: Last week we planted some seeds in some bare spots on the side of the house and near the pine tree in the back. We raked them in and water daily, sometimes twice a day. Then I fertilized the entire yard with Scott's Starter and watered the entire yard to water it in. I cut the front yard yesterday (not the back yard yet).

After talking with a few people, there's some good ideas, but I want to do it right, and in the right order.

Front Yard:
-Saturday, the front yard will be thatched and all the loose dead grass will be removed.
-What should I do next? Someone mentioned Morganite helped their lawn. Another person recommended Scott's Starter for entire lawn (which I bought a large bag of). Should I re-seed the entire front yard after thatching... and then apply Scott's Starter after? And then Morganite as well (or is that too much).

Side Yard: So the side yards have new grass, I applied Scott's Starter and water daily. Should I add Morganite too? It's growing but right now appears to be a couple spots that are still bare.

Back Yard: Back yard will be the trickiest. We know someone who works for Scott's who could spray it with weed and feed. Assuming those are weeds in the backyard, would that help? There's bare spots thought, some significantly large, and the grass is spotty and not always pleasant to walk on. Would it make sense to seed it first and not worry about weed and feed? Or should we feed and feed, wait, then apply seeds X days later?

The Pine Tree Bare Spot: How should we handle this? Rake it out some more (got rid of most of the pine needles), add some lime, then re-seed? Should I get soil, or just use the dirt that is there?

Thanks in advance.

Also, my phone is transferring photos to my computer now (taking awhile), I imagine those will help and I will add them when they come through...
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Advice For Lawn-backyard-under-pine-tree.jpg   Advice For Lawn-backyard.jpg   Advice For Lawn-front-yard-1.jpg   Advice For Lawn-front-yard-2.jpg   Advice For Lawn-front-yard-3.jpg  

Advice For Lawn-front-yard-closer.jpg   Advice For Lawn-front-yard-dead-grass.jpg   Advice For Lawn-side-bare-spots.jpg   Advice For Lawn-side-new-grass.jpg   Advice For Lawn-side-yard-bare-spots-some-moss.jpg  

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Last edited by Shutout; 05-24-2015 at 03:06 PM..
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Old 05-24-2015, 03:07 PM
Location: CO
2,454 posts, read 2,820,756 times
Reputation: 5225
Aerating and power raking (de-thatching) will do wonders for your yard, but these should be done early in the spring. Depending on where you live you're getting a late start. Grass seed is also most easily germinated in early spring and in the fall, as hot weather makes it tough to keep it wet enough. I don't really have any suggestions for weed killers since I don't apply them myself. But I can tell you not to waste your time trying to grow grass under a pine tree, as you've discovered it won't work. You could try vinca as a ground cover there if you'd like as it seems to do fine with pines. Good luck!
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Old 05-24-2015, 03:21 PM
5,970 posts, read 13,780,647 times
Reputation: 9683
De-thatch, weed and feed, grass seed (water 2x day)

Check bare spots for grubs. If you have grubs you need to get rid of them before you waste time and money trying to grow grass (and the avoid skunks and raccoons tearing up your lawn).
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Old 05-24-2015, 04:50 PM
Location: North West Arkansas (zone 6b)
2,748 posts, read 2,269,274 times
Reputation: 3778
Get your soil tested with your cooperative extension so you know if it's deficient in anything. The extension office can also recommend what you'll need to get your lawn growing better without worrying about whether they just want to charge you for some un-needed work.
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Old 05-24-2015, 07:12 PM
671 posts, read 706,348 times
Reputation: 882
Should I spread grass seed over entire yard? Also do I need to wait x amount if days before applying seed after weed and feed?
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