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Lawn care tips


Over seeding and Top dressing Guide

Written by Dave Worner on 01-May-2018 19:47:00


Watch the guide or read it


What is overseeding?

Overseeding is spreading seed over an established lawn to help thicken it up, fill in any bald areas, and help rejuvenate the lawn.

How do I over seed my lawn?

When you're overseeding you need to take into consideration what sort of lawn you have. Is it a lawn that kids are going to play football on? Is it a lawn which you just want to look really, really nice like a prestige lawn or is it a lawn which is actually quite shady? This will determine what seed you need. If you go into any garden center they will have the seeds which might be utility lawn, shady lawn, and you select the right one.


The box weill show the application rate of what you need to sow the seed at. Take into consideration the size of the lawn and how many grams per square meter as this will tell you how many boxes of seed you need per square meter.

What are the different types of grass

There's three main types of grass that we're going to look at today: fescues, bents, ryegrasses, and annual meadow grass (also known as poa).


For a luxury lawn you'll be looking at bent and fescue as it can be cut really low. The disadvantage is that it can catch disease and is quite a high-maintenance lawn.


You then have ryegrass. Now, ryegrass is a real tufted grass that's very tough and hard wearing. Normally found on rugby fields or football fields. If you've got kids playing in your garden, then it's probably the lawn.


Lastly there is poa or annual meadow grass. This is actually seen as a weed grass, but it serves the purpose. It's very shallow rooted and a bit of an opportunist. Wherever there's a gap it will just get in there but as soon as you hit cement, any real drought, it's going to get out. Of course, during the winter it dies away. So although during the summer you may appear to have a very thick lawn, during the winter when it goes, it can leave it looking quite patchy. If you do have a lot of poa you may look to overseed regularly so that during the winter, you're not left with a lot of bald patches.

What types of grass seed should I use?

When selecting grass seed you need to ask yourself "What kind of lawn do I need, and what kind of lawn do I want?" If you're after a prestige/ luxury lawn which is striped, or maybe more just to look at, then you'll be after a seed which is a bent/fescue mix. Or, you may have a lawn which has... kids play football on, has swings and slides, and in which case you'd be looking for more of a tough fescue seed. This is also good where there's lots of traffic, so maybe a pathed area where people go from one end of the garden to the other, but you may also have a shaded area, which is surrounded by trees and shrubs, and in which case, you'd want a more shade tolerant fescue seed. Now, when you go to the garden center, the majority of the boxes will say exactly what they're for.

What is top dressing

Top dressing is a thin layer of soil and sand which is used over the surface of a prestige luxury lawn to just take out any blemishes. it can also be used to help in the reseeding process when overseeding.

How much topsoil do I need


There are two things you need to think about: One, are you using it just for seed germination to level out any blemishes on a luxury lawn or is it a little bit more uneven. For example … where the kids play...you will need to put more soil in, a lot more.


If it is just the seeding and removing blemishes, I think about five mil per square meter will be enough. This works out to five kilograms per square meter, for example: on a 200 square meter lawn you will need 1,000 kilograms of soil/sand. Although topdressing is fantastic for your lawn, it comes at quite a cost. Your garden center can supply 20 kilogram bags which is great for a small lawn but that is definitely the most expensive way of doing things. You can buy a 1,000 kilograms (a ton bag) which would be delivered on a lorry and works out more cost effective.


Topics: Lawn maintenance, Grass

Dave Worner

Written by Dave Worner

Dave aka "The Lawn Guy" is a lawn care expert with 20 years lawn care experience with 18 years experience as a greenkeeper at Hindhead Golf club. He provides professional lawn care services in Haslemere and the surrounding area.

Other posts by Dave Worner

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