DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum

DIY Home Improvement, Remodeling & Repair Forum (http://www.houserepairtalk.com/forum.php)
-   General Home Improvement Discussion (http://www.houserepairtalk.com/f45/)
-   -   Growing grass with limited light (http://www.houserepairtalk.com/f45/growing-grass-limited-light-33/)

matthome 03-16-2005 03:01 PM

Growing grass with limited light
 
I live in an urban area in the midwest and have a small patch of dirt out behind my apartment, where I would like to try to grow grass. The area gets about 2 hours of direct sunlight in the summer (less in spring and fall). And there's currently nothing growing in the dirt.

Any recommendations on the following:
1. how to prepare the soil
2. when to plant the grass
3. whether to use seeds or sod
4. what type of grass to grow
5. how much water is needed

THANK YOU!!!

Joe_T 04-05-2006 07:47 PM

I'm getting to like moss and mushrooms...
 
We have similar problems only my home is in central PA. I have wonderful maple trees that shade my backyard 90% or more of the time. I've tried everything in the book but it seems that I can either have the trees or grass, but not both.

After three years of planting every type of shade tolerant grass, I could find, I have given up. This year I am planning to work on getting shade loving plants to take root in the back. I made this decision a few weeks ago when I found that last year's latest efforts at a shaded lawn were a failure...again. This is a new adventure for me so I don't have much to offer in the way of wisdom yet.

I know about wanting to get the dirt covered by something green and I encourage you to give grass a try but do a little research on shade gardens. Supposedly, it is even possible to have a garden pond in the shade...but I am researching that one a bit more

PaPaDan 04-12-2006 05:23 PM

Matthome, I don't know how large of an area you have, but rough up the surface with a garden rake. You want to get a layer of loose soil on top. Sprinkle a little lime on the area and rake that into the loose soil. Use Creeping red fescue for seed. Sprinkle lightly with water to help sink the seed into the loose soil. You will need to sprinkle a little each day until the seed starts to grow. Then water fairly heavy until lawn is established. Red Fescue is an excellent grass for shaded or high traffic areas. Now, Joe_T, buddy, i'm affraid your SOL. Maple trees have shallow spreading root systems and just suck the ground dry of moisture and nutrients. I am just now starting to get some grass to grow in my side yard. Cut down the last Maple tree about 3 years ago. When I bought this house I had a great yard with 2 small (6') maples in the side yard. Each year the trees just about doubled in size and the grass was cut in half. Whithin 6 years there was not a blade of grass left. We kept the area mulched and planted flowers that were watered every single day and fed with miracle grow every 2 weeks. That is all we could do to cover the bare ground.

bethany14 07-19-2006 01:01 PM

You'll spend a lot of time, energy, and moolah trying to force grass in. Give some of these plants a try:
http://www.mortonarb.org/plantinfo/plantclinic/Selection_PlantsShadySites.pdf

pqglen 08-04-2006 07:38 AM

I think that Korean grass loves the shade. it is that lumpy slow growing grass. I live in SoCal so I dont know how this stuff does in winter. I know it gets pretty cold in Korea. I do know it thrives in shade and will die if it gets to much sun

catlutz 08-25-2006 10:58 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by matthome
I live in an urban area in the midwest and have a small patch of dirt out behind my apartment, where I would like to try to grow grass. The area gets about 2 hours of direct sunlight in the summer (less in spring and fall). And there's currently nothing growing in the dirt.

Any recommendations on the following:
1. how to prepare the soil
2. when to plant the grass
3. whether to use seeds or sod
4. what type of grass to grow
5. how much water is needed

THANK YOU!!!

Hi Matt:
I'm was looking over some of the posts because I had a question and I came across your dilemma. I too had a problem growing grass because the area was surrounded by trees and absolutely no sun. I decided to try one last time. I went to the garden center and came across some fertilizer (natural) which was cow manuere (poop) and bought the grass seed designed for high traffic, low sun area. I dug up the area and mix some of the cow manuere in with the soil then raked it level and spread the grass seed out. I then put more of the cow manuere (not sure spelling is right with cow poop) on the area and watered. Because I have dogs I never use any harsh chemicals on my lawn, as I would never live near a golf course because of all the harsh chemicals they use to keep the lawn so beautiful. But after using the cow poop I swear the very next day I noted growth, I swear, no lie. Even my neighbors were amazed, they too went out and did exact same thing I did we were all just amazed. It became the joke of the neighborhood, we would say, "lets get our lawn chairs and watch the grass grow" because literally it would grow about an 1/8 of inch overnight. Now the smell wasnt that great but that went away in a few days. So I decided to do some research about using cow manuere as a natural fertilizer and found how the farmers from years ago would rotate thier crops and by doing this the fields that were used one /two years for grazing would now be the most fertile for growing thier crops in this field. Why, because the cows would graze then poop, over and over again then the farmers would plow these fields mixing all the manuere in thus giving them the best crops ever. Made sense to me. Finding the process manuere however can be difficult, you may need to do alot of searching. I hope that this has helped and wish you luck with growing a lawn. Thanks Catlutz


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 11:00 PM.