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Yard Problem - Requesting Advice

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Sep 28, 2020 - 8:15:43 AM
2171 posts since 2/10/2013

Hurricane came through. Very big trees have fallen. Some by the hurricane, others by tree trimmers. In parts of my yard, trees and/or large branches made deep impressions. Most are less than 12" deep and up to18" wide or long.

What is the best way to fix the problem ? I don't think I can just fill them in with top soil. The buried grass would die and make it harder for new grass to start growing - I think. I have wondered about "raising" the sod and earth in the depressions. But then what would I do to fill in the vacant space under the sod ? I hope to avoid cutting the sod out, filling with topsoil, and feeding and watering the sod. The labor is not the problem. I am just worrying about the roots of the sod being injured and the grass dying. Installing new sod does not always work out. I have experienced that more than once. I follow instructions but still the new sod did not survive. I will forevermore avoid buying new sod from any place other than the sod farm itself.

Some knowledgeable person has probably dealt with his problem, or will soon have to deal with this problem. Advice will be appreciated.

Thanks in advance -

Sep 28, 2020 - 8:21:43 AM

phb

Germany

2105 posts since 11/8/2010

You can fill up dents in the grass by simply putting some soil on top. The grass will get back on top after some time. But with dents 12" deep this will take a very long time as you can only put an inch of loose soil on the grass at a time.

Sep 28, 2020 - 8:25:16 AM

Texasbanjo (Moderator)

USA

24987 posts since 8/3/2003

We haven't had hurricane damage, but several years ago a car plowed through our yard and left a huge, deep gouge in the front yard about as wide as a tire headed sideways at 50+ mph (yes, that's what happened). Dave got some soil and put it in the ruts and we watered the yard and watched the grass grow over it. Took about 2 seasons for it to completely fill in, but it did, didn't have to resod, just water and fertilize and wait. Don't know if that would work where you are or not.

Sep 28, 2020 - 10:16:43 AM

10838 posts since 1/15/2005

quote:
Originally posted by Richard Hauser

Hurricane came through. Very big trees have fallen. Some by the hurricane, others by tree trimmers. In parts of my yard, trees and/or large branches made deep impressions. Most are less than 12" deep and up to18" wide or long.

What is the best way to fix the problem ? I don't think I can just fill them in with top soil. The buried grass would die and make it harder for new grass to start growing - I think. I have wondered about "raising" the sod and earth in the depressions. But then what would I do to fill in the vacant space under the sod ? I hope to avoid cutting the sod out, filling with topsoil, and feeding and watering the sod. The labor is not the problem. I am just worrying about the roots of the sod being injured and the grass dying. Installing new sod does not always work out. I have experienced that more than once. I follow instructions but still the new sod did not survive. I will forevermore avoid buying new sod from any place other than the sod farm itself.

Some knowledgeable person has probably dealt with his problem, or will soon have to deal with this problem. Advice will be appreciated.

Thanks in advance -


Dick ..... do you have a warm weather grass (Bermuda, Zoysia, Centipede, St. Augustine) or a coll season grass like Fescue (Tall or Fine (Red))?  The solution is pretty much the same, but going into cool weather you are a little limited on warm season grass.  If you have a pitchfork, one with about five or six tine  (I like the kind where the tines actually have a little spring in them), when the ground is moist just stick the pitchfork tines well beneath the sod and leverage it (push down on the pitchfork handle) to the proper grade.  I have done this when I have felled a large tree and it makes a pretty significant indention in the turf.  When you do this you are also pushing up soil with the sod and you should not have any problem with it.

If you have in the past laid some pieces of sod, there is no reason they would not thrive if the surrounding sod is healthy.  If you have shade or other issues like fertility or ph balance, then the sod may struggle ..... that is if you keep it watered until it tacks down.

If there are shallow indentions, then they can be topdressed with straight sand.  Now however is not the time to do it on warm season grasses as they may not have time to recover before they go dormant.  It still probably won't kill the grass underneath though.  On coll season grasses, topdressing now should be OK.

Sep 28, 2020 - 10:23:54 AM
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Brian T

Canada

17104 posts since 6/5/2008

Fill them up with dirt and throw some local preference grass seed mix on it with some water.
I use grass seed to cover up the muddy edge of my gravel street.

Sep 28, 2020 - 2:53:49 PM
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10838 posts since 1/15/2005

quote:
Originally posted by Brian T

Fill them up with dirt and throw some local preference grass seed mix on it with some water.
I use grass seed to cover up the muddy edge of my gravel street.


Brian ..... that won't work on warm season grass varieties if it is either Hybrid Bermuda (unless it is Common Bermuda) or Zoysia.  They would have to be sodded or sprigged and it is even getting a little late for sprigging.

Sep 28, 2020 - 3:26:04 PM

9668 posts since 8/22/2006

Spread dirt and apply rye grass it grows good in the south in cooler weather. The grass under the dirt will come back,maybe not all,in the spring but you can reseed in the spring. The rye grass will die off in warmer weather.

Sep 29, 2020 - 7:04:09 AM

10838 posts since 1/15/2005

quote:
Originally posted by Richard Hauser

Hurricane came through. Very big trees have fallen. Some by the hurricane, others by tree trimmers. In parts of my yard, trees and/or large branches made deep impressions. Most are less than 12" deep and up to18" wide or long.

What is the best way to fix the problem ? I don't think I can just fill them in with top soil. The buried grass would die and make it harder for new grass to start growing - I think. I have wondered about "raising" the sod and earth in the depressions. But then what would I do to fill in the vacant space under the sod ? I hope to avoid cutting the sod out, filling with topsoil, and feeding and watering the sod. The labor is not the problem. I am just worrying about the roots of the sod being injured and the grass dying. Installing new sod does not always work out. I have experienced that more than once. I follow instructions but still the new sod did not survive. I will forevermore avoid buying new sod from any place other than the sod farm itself.

Some knowledgeable person has probably dealt with his problem, or will soon have to deal with this problem. Advice will be appreciated.

Thanks in advance -


Dick ..... still important to know what variety of grass you have if you will let us know. Also what type of soil ..... red clay (or that gray "Houston clay" that is prevalent around Montgomery) or good topsoil with a lot of organics.

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