dieing lawn

20 Aug 2006
Reaction score
United Kingdom
hi guys, hope you can help...
i have a small garden which is more mud than grass, i turfed it 3 years ago, its been fine till this winter, every day i go out i see more brown than green.
i see alot of surface water, its very boggy, do you think this dieing grass is due to this...?
any sollutions to the drainage? or do you think i should leave it till march time and re-seed....

all the best
matt :confused:
Sponsored Links
If it is flooded, the roots will drown and the grass will (eventually) die.

Has it been trampled a lot by kids or football teams? This can "puddle" a clay soil to make the surface waterproof. This can be attacked by hollow-tining and dressing with coarse sand. In the case of footballers, the players will grind the sand into the surface. You will probably have seen the effect in goalmouths.

If not, then perhaps you are in a low-lying pocket prone to floods, or perhaps the surface needs breaking up. Did you dig it over before laying it?

If you don't fix the water problem, re-seeding it will not help, it will just die again when it gets wet.
thanks so much guys...

no i have no kid! dog! and theres not much walking on neither!

it was grassed before hand in places, all i did was rake it hard so i thought the new turf...

i dont get it as its very muddy in foot squere areas, yes its bogy but its been ok for 2 years...

shall i chuck course sand on anyway?

thanks for your help
Sponsored Links
Is it a heavy clay soil?
Do you have flower beds at a higher level than the lawn? Or is there a slight ditch round the edges?

You will need to drain it.

If you dig a small hole in the garden, does it fill with water?

Is there much concrete whose rainfall runs onto the garden? Or a shed gutter?

If it is not puddled, I don't think the coarse sand will help unless you slit or tine the surface for drainage, and let the sand fill the holes.

You can experimentally drive your fork repeatedly into the ground over, say, a square meter. Wiggle the fork around so the tines make holes that water can drain down. If this helps you can hire or buy a hollow-tiner which will do a similar job but better.
there is no flower beds, there is a large tarmac car park to the rear but i dont think the water runs int the lawn as there a kirb stoping the rain!
iv looked at me garden 2day and i have a 6x4 shed with no guttering on and now iv looked at it this is the dieing area, i cant put guttering on the shed as theres no room!
the areas are very wet but no surface water visable!
i Have this very same problem. We re-landscaped our garden earlier in 2006 and re-turfed two terraced levels. Now, most of the grass has disappeared and I have a few strands poking up through the mud. The area was well prepped, raked and rolled before laying the turf and it initially took really well. Now though, it looks a right mess. Will it recover itself? I have a load of Candian seed to throw down in Feb/March, but anything i can do in the meantime? I'm getting grief from the missus for being a lawn killer!
probably not. I seem to be coming across a lot of lawns like this at the moment, especially relativly new ones that have been well prepared. The only common factor seems to be they were laid during the hot weather. it may well be the dry weather has done irreperable damage to them, followed by the prolonged rain, which has almost drowned them. :cry:
I used to have 6" of surface water on my lawn every time we had heavy rain, the ground was very peaty and spongy. I had just moved in, so when I removed a couple of interior walls I dug 3 trenches in the garden
at the lowest points a buried the bricks, put down topsoil and laid a new lawn. Don't have any surface water now. Hard work but it was worth it.( don't put plaster and such in the trenches)
peaty and spongy is just what a lawn needs.

but im guessing you have clay?

all i can suggest is spike it with a potato fork (not a little bedding fork) and fill the holes with sand (not gravel cus that will shag yuh mower)

also it may be possible to improve surface drainage (only you can answer that one)

welcome to the world of men trying to grow grass on clay

good luck

ps you will succeed, it aint that bad

DIYnot Local

Staff member

If you need to find a tradesperson to get your job done, please try our local search below, or if you are doing it yourself you can find suppliers local to you.

Select the supplier or trade you require, enter your location to begin your search.

Are you a trade or supplier? You can create your listing free at DIYnot Local

Sponsored Links