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Creating a new clover lawn.

In CategoryTim Whitcombe
ByGardenAdvice Tim Whitcombe

 

 

Creating a new clover lawn. As climate change in the UK produces hotter spells in the summer and artificial lawn start to run into problems with family pets. Clover lawns are providing a solution to the family lawn problem especially if you have some aspiring young footballers and cricketers in your family. 

How to create a flower lawn. 

The first stage in creating a new clover lawn is to use Roundup weedkiller that will kill all the existing grass and weeds, etc. This should be carried out ideally 3 weeks before the preparation of the new lawn. The ideal time to establish a new lawn is in the autumn or early winter when the soil is still warm from the summer sun. This is a key, because once the clovers established, it will be very difficult to kill any existing weeds that come up, other than by spot treatments. However, once the clover establishes, it will crowd out any weeds that come through. 

The second stage after weed killing is to carry out a light rotovating of the area to become the lawn no deeper than 75 millimetres. The reason you do not want to go any deeper, is that by motivating too deeply it’s possible to bring up too many weed seeds into the surface of the final seedbed. 

The third stage is to create the general levels. After the initial renovating the soil can be moved around quite easily with a rake, garden spade or a shovel to create the basic required levels. 

The fourth stage is to start to get the final levels. This is done again by raking and by using your feet to tread the soil, so that you can feel the high spots and low areas as walk around the lawn area. 

With this second leveling stage, rake in two directions, you can remove any large stones that you come across over 30 millimetres. With regards to small stones at this stage, it’s not really worth removing stones that are less than 25 millimetres or 30 millimetres. 

The fifth stage is the seeding. Once you’ve achieved the levels, and created a reasonable seed bed seeding should take place by spreading the seed in two directions, sometimes it’s helpful to mark out the area with strings into meter square patches. Firstly, the grass seed should be applied to the recommended rate. And secondly, the clover seed should be applied again at the recommended rate. 

Seeding is being carried out in the autumn or early winter. A second sowing is recommended in the spring at the end of April, beginning of May, depending on the weather. Once the area has been initially seeded it’s a good idea again to either roll or to walk around the area to make sure the seed has good contact with the soil. 

If no rain is forecast for the next two or three days after sowing watering again will help the seed make contact with the soil and begin the germination process. 

The Sixth task. Once the grass and the clover is reached 25 millimetres and height after germinating the whole area should be gone over with a wire rake flicking out any larger stones that have come to the surface and removing these stones, walking over the area will also 

encourage tillering, this is where the stems from the grass and clover are broken which encourages more shoots to grow thickening up the general sward of the new lawn. 

The seventh task. If the area is quite stony. It’s a good idea to carry a light rolling with a garden roller, or use a construction compactor plate over the area when the area is dry to push any stones back into the surface of the soil. 

The final stage in establishing the clover lawn, is to carry out a general feeding with Growmore fertiliser approximately a handful per metre. This will be washed into the soil by the rain. It’s a granular fertiliser so there is no risk of burning the new leaves on the clover and grass plants. This will start to encourage the sward or the lawn plants to build up a nice level of growth and cover the surface, covering any stones and beginning to crowd out any weeds.

 

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