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Help on "Removing" a Lawn?

4851 Views 7 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  Steamguy
I was wondering if anyone could point me in the direction of any good reading material on "replacing a lawn?"

I am looking at a job to completely replace a front lawn in a suburban neighborhood. The lawn is probably 50 years old, and has "built up" over the years to the point that it is 3"-4"-5" inches higher than the concrete of the driveway, sidewalk and curb. It's high enough that it is practically impossible to mow without scalping certain areas. The overall condition of it is very poor, with crabgrass, etc. ...and the bottom line is that it NEEDS TO GO and be re-done.

Would the best way to start off be to rototill? I have seen where some use a sod cutter ...but I question whether or not that would be of any benefit and the "manual" ones are out of the question. I have not seen any GT sod-cutter attachments ...debated on trying to fab one up and try it. Thought about fabbing up a "root knive" type attachment (vertical blade) for the back of the GT and make several passes to break up the soil some prior to rototilling.

Right now I'm thinking of rototilling when the ground is soft, blade work (front and rear) to scrape off 6" or so, add underground sprinkling piping, layer of topsoil, seed (or possibly sod). Does that sound about right?

I have tried searches on the subject (both here and on the rest of the WWW.) and have pretty much come up empty handed. Anyone have any ideas or good links on the subject?


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Longman, I have had to tear out two lawns. Tried both methods. If you go with littletractorguy's advice, it is absolutely the right thing to do!! He is spot on. None of the old weeds and junk end up in the nice, new grass, unlike what you have when you till. You can never, ever, rake enough to pull out ALL the old stuff. Go for the sodcutter.

This is especially true for you where you have between 3 and 5 inches too much soil in the area. Once you have the sod out, (that'll take out a substantial amount of your extra height right there) you can till, level, and scrape the yard to make it perfect and the perfect height all around. Then you can 'roll in' your fertilizer and grass seed.
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