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Lawn & Garden

Starting a lawn

I am interested in trying to grow a nice lawn in my backyard.  Issue is that it has been quite some time since we have done any treatment due to our dogs but we do get a lot of weeds and some grass that we keep mowed down short during spring and summer.  I am not sure if I need to till or use an "aerator", what is the best lawn seed, etc.  Can you give me any suggestions.

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Posted 2011-03-04T05:25:31+0000  by mzvlopez66 mzvlopez66

Greetings Mzvlopez66 and welcome to the How-To-Community!!!


My name is Mike and I’m from The Home Depot in Chicago and I may have some help for your lawn.   Right off the bat, I can tell you that seeding and fertilizing  are going to be two major components in helping you achieve a perfect lawn. 


To  better access your situation can you tell me what state or climate zone are you in.  Also,  if there’s any way you could post some pictures that would be a major help.


Posted 2011-03-04T15:11:09+0000  by FlyingHDsod

im in illinois

Posted 2011-03-04T20:39:42+0000  by bagle888

Hey bagle888, and welcome to the Home Depot Community.


While the best time to seed a new lawn in Illinois is actually in the early fall, next best will be in April.

You do want to make sure the seed is started well before the hot summer months hit.


So what’s the process?  In short, you want to:


1.        Kill off weeds, and what little grass there is.

2.        Add any necessary soil amendments, then till and grade the area smooth.

3.       Apply starter fertilizer. 

4.       Spread the grass seed.

5.       Lightly rake the seed into the soil.

6.       Use a roller to firm up the soil and set the seed.

7.       Put down a light layer of mulch/straw.

8.       Water.


Our website has a project guide I think you will find useful:


What kind of grass should you plant?  Well, for most people, a general sun & shade mix will provide good results and is the easiest to use.  The blend of seed types will allow for a variety of light and traffic conditions using one application.  You will want to lightly water the seed bed daily, keeping the soil moist without causing runoff.


I hope this helps, and please don’t hesitate to ask for more detail.



Posted 2011-03-04T21:39:16+0000  by Chris_HD_CHI

I am in South Carolina....when is the best time to plant grass...I am tilling and leveling my yard now.  If you could tell me when to plant the seed and also what type of grass is the best for our climate, that would be great!  I want our lawn to look lush.  Thanks!

Posted 2011-03-09T19:10:32+0000  by Bri

Greetings Bri and welcome the How-To-Community!!!


My name is Mike and I work for The Home Depot in Chicago and I’m here to help.  Depending on where you’re located in the state depends on what type of grass you have.  There is a very wide variety of grasses that grow there.  Most of the state is covered in warm season grasses such as: Bermuda, Zoysia, Centipede, and Carpet grass.

Bermuda is going to be your best bet.  Since most of the state is occupied by Bermuda you may want to stick with this.  Many new and improved seeded varieties have been developed and released during the last 10 years. Users now have a choice of varieties that are denser and finer textured than the almost extinct seed of common Bermuda grass.


Since you have already started to prep and level out the soil you can apply the seed right away if you want. It takes about 30 days for the seeds to germinate.  There are a few different types of seed you can use.  If the temperature gets colder there in the winter you may want to get the seed that can withstand the cooler winters.  You can also get Bermuda grass in sod, sprigs, and plugs if you decide that seeding will take too long.  After you get your seeding done a slow release fertilizer will be best to help the seeds grow thick and strong.


If you have any questions feel free to write back.  Also if you could post some pictures that would be great.

Posted 2011-03-11T17:58:13+0000  by FlyingHDsod

I live in Massachusetts. Our lawn has never been nice, since we moved in. A lot dry dirt areas, and even an area of sand where an above ground pool used to be. Any advice/help would be greatly appreciated to start out our yawn facelift. We also have a dog that goes out there often, to do his business and play. Any suggestions about what to do when the grass is growing  in relation to our dog being on the grass?



Posted 2011-03-30T15:57:39+0000  by kat52484

Greetings Kat52484 and Welcome to the How-To-Community!!!


My name is Mike and I work with The Home Depot in Chicago and I have a few ideas to get you started on that perfect lawn.   To help fill in your dirt spots and bare areas with grass the best thing to do is to till in some Turf Builder Seeding Soil.  The advantage of this soil is that it will help promote new growth to the grass seed. It contains the fertilizers and nutrients for early grass development and to help establish a strong root system.  You can use any grass seed you wish with this soil. You should be able to use this whereever the grass isn’t growing.


When the grass is growing you will want to keep the dog out of the area.  If you could section it off and have a designated area for him to do his business would be the best until the grass is done growing in.  The less stress on the grass the better and faster it will grow in.  Water is going to be a major factor to make sure it grows properly.  You will need to water every day that it doesn’t rain. 


If you run into any problems or have any other questions feel free to write back.

Posted 2011-04-01T16:59:18+0000  by FlyingHDsod
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