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What do I do with my garden?

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I have an area of about 40 sq. metres that has not been tended for many years. There is a very large walnut tree in it, which is due to be removed. The ground has a lot of bricks in the soil, which I am painstakingly removing, and enough worms to start a small farm! What would be the best way for me to treat this area, as I would eventually like to lay a lawn there?



Glad it's got worms in it! That shows there's life there. You will have to dig and dig again, and put in a lot of compost when you've cleared the land of weeds and detritus. Then rake all the small stones out and level it. After that, tread the soil down before raking the top to a fine tilth. THEN you can lay your turf! You have a job ahead of you, Lee! I hope you can get some help - or hire a rotavator maybe?

19 Sep, 2008


Hi Lee whats happening with the the walnut? These trees take many years to mature and have the most beautiful grain - used to make the best veneers please dont burn or shred it .

Must be woodworkers etc out there who would pay for this wood as gorgeous and you d be doing your re - cycling bit.

19 Sep, 2008


I don't think you need any advice, sounds like you're doing it just right, just going to take a little time that's all.

Take out everything you don't want, preferably compost it, if the vegetation is suitable for composting, i.e.some weeds should not be composted has they rejuvinate in the process and you continue to have the weed problem.

You may want to get in 2 or 3 tons of top soil to freshen it up. Buying compost for this wouldn't be practical, it would be too expensive and really it would be pointless to use such a highly fertile growing medium for grass, it would be a waste of good compost.Anyway spread the top soil over your 40 sq meters and hire out a rotovator for half a day, and churn it all up. The rotovator will be worth it.

Then simply rake it until you get it level with a fine texture and consistency running through it on the surface, and then well you can either lay turf or sow seed.

Or pay someone to do the whole thing.

20 Sep, 2008


Hi all, thanks for the replies, much appreciated.
To Bonkers....I had someone look at the tree who said it was female and about 50 years old, apparently its not the "dark" walnut that they like, and owing to girth size they weren't interested. It seems a shame I must admit.
Thanks for the encouragement Scd, how can I tell if the weeds that are there are suitable or not for composting?

20 Sep, 2008


There are two main culprits bind weed and couch grass, there may be others, in fact I'm sure there is, but these two if you have them, must be sprayed with weed killer, digging them out won't be sufficient, they will always leave peices behind that will grow again and probably twice as vigourous.

This will involve some plant identification on your part. Once you have a picture of the net or in a book, they're pretty easy to identify out in your garden.

20 Sep, 2008


Ok Scd, thanks for all your help, its off to the garden centre for me tomorrow to get some industrial strength weed killer! Lol....its what sundays were made for

20 Sep, 2008


For some of the reasons described above and from personal experience a rotovator will not suite your requirements, what this will do is give you more of the same i.e. loads of churned up weeds just waiting to pop their little heads up from everywhere a rotovator spreads them. The dandelion a most capable weed that can reproduce from almost any means of propogation known to man, including sliced up root, seed and leaf so leave the rotovator where it is, hand dig and weed carefully, for any perennial weed such as buttercup, dandelion and those mentioned above will surely make your life hell.Rotovators contrary to popular opinion are for cultivated soil, use them to turn over soil at the back end and the start of the garden season after frost has subsided and to loosen good weed free soil. At best rotovators hide only for a short while the weeds they firmly churn and push into the ground then the operator needs to rotovate again to hide the vigorous growth they have made, which is all the worse for themselves as the weeds are already spread far and wide If your hand picking stones then hand pick the weeds at the same time, put the weeds into containers and burn do not compost perennial weeds they are hard to break down and will make a new weed patch wherever they are discarded. .

8 Apr, 2012

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