Before you work out what materials you need to order and purchase, you will first need to measure up your space. Always measure in metres as you are looking for a final measurement in metres squared (m2). Below are some tips on measuring for both instant and artificial lawn.
Some lawn areas are straight forward as they are a clear single shape, however other areas may be a combination of shapes (e.g. a square and a circle), which can make it a bit trickier. Below are some suggestions regarding different shapes and how to measure to ensure you get the most accurate number for ordering your lawn. If you do have an irregular shaped lawn area, divide it into regular shapes, calculate the individual area of those shapes and add them together to get an overall measurement.
For a square, rectangle or oval, you need to multiply the length by the width.
Formula: L x W = m2
Example: If a lawn has a length of 6 metres and a width of 15 metres you need to multiply 6 by 15.
Sum: 6 x 15 = 90m2
Alternatively, if your lawn is a circular shape, measure the diameter (length from one side to the other). Divide the diameter by 2 to get the radius (R) of the circle. Using the radius, complete the following formula to get the area of your circle.
Formula: R x R x 3.14 = m2
For example, if your circle has a diameter of 13 metres, the radius is 6.5 metres and the sum below is needed to work out the area of your circle.
Sum: 6.5 x 6.5 x 3.14 = 132.7m2
To calculate the area of a triangle, measure the base and one side of the triangle. You will need to multiply the base (B) by the side (S) and divide it by two to get the overall area.
Formula: B x S ÷ 2 = m2
For example, if your lawn has a base of 16 metres and a side of 9 metres the sum below would be required to work out the area of your triangle.
Sum: 16 x 9 ÷ 2 = 72m2
It is advisable to allow extra turf when ordering as you will have some wastage, especially if your lawn is of an irregular shape.
Know the size of your panels when ordering artificial turf so that you do not have to cut them any more than needed.
GENERAL INFORMATION ON TURF TYPE AND OR LAYING OF TURF FOR A DO IT YOURSELF OPTION
(NOT INCLUDING FESCUE)
It is strongly suggested spray off existing weeds and growth first, best to use “Round up” and follow instructions on pack, making sure you wear appropriate safety gear. Invest in a spray pack, ensure when you have finished with it to wash it out well.
CHOICE OF TURF
Depends on what you want but if the area is in full sun then a Noonan Fine Leaf Kikuyu is one of the best as that is green all year round, hardy and drought tolerant. That is around $6.80 per square metre plus delivery if less than 50 square metres, price may vary. To get the square metres, you measure the length and the width and multiply (length x width = square metres) If it is not a square or rectangle, then allow a couple of square metres for cutting out. If the area is shaded or has more than 15% shade, then look at something like Tall Fescue which can take about 40% shade or if more than that, then a Buffalo variety would be more suitable as most can take up to 70% shade. To make your choice, view our lawn plots and read the information we can give you on each variety available first.
SOIL PREPARATION, LAYING AND WATERING
To prepare, depends on type of soil you have and if ph is ok but generally, cut down the area 100ml, rotary hoe the base adding in some gypsum, organic matter or organic fertiliser, or our soil conditioning fertiliser, level off then infill with a good loam such as Mt Compass Turf mix or Sandy loam(depending on your existing soil 80/20 or 60/40 mix), rake and ROLL it to get level, leaving about 3 -4cm below the height you want to allow for your turf. If it is a hot day, you must water the ground well before you lay the turf and then soak the turf when you lay it and Roll it again. Lay it like bricks working from one side to another, leaving the cuts till last.
Watering must be done daily for the first week, during warm weather, twice a day giving the lawn good soaks so the water goes down to the soil underneath. Cut back watering gradually the second week to every second day, then 3rd week every third day, keeping in mind to give extra watering if needed during extreme hot weather. As from December 1st, 2010 no watering permits are given out and overhead sprinklers may be used between 5 p.m. and 10 a.m. any day, with hand held hoses fitted with a trigger nozzle can be used any time, any day.
To amend this for fescue, it needs watering twice daily for the first week regardless, with hand watering in the middle of the day during hot weather, then a good soak once daily second week with extra watering on hot days.
If you are doing irrigation, in particular subsurface, it is suggested by us (we have done quite a few) to lay at 100ml below the turf, at 30cm apart even though the irrigation shops will tell you to lay anywhere between 40 and 50cm apart, the lawn will suffer and get uneven watering if it is too far apart. The soil is placed over this and the turf is laid as above. Subsurface or dripper irrigation is permitted to be used any time, any day. ALL TURFS NEED OVERHEAD WATERING WHEN FIRST LAID AND DURING HOT WEATHER.
AFTER CARE (adapt as to turf type)
Fescue is weekly mowing all year round, do not cut short anytime. It is then suggested you mow the lawn at this time of year after about 2 weeks and feed it (fertilise) with an organic fertiliser or lawn starter at about 6 weeks. Once you start mowing, then it's best to do weekly, cutting no more than 1/3 off the leaf in any one cut and leave the lawn at least 25mm.
Fertilising should also be done regularly, once per season alternating the fertiliser (i.e. using organic once season, chemical another or different types of organic fertiliser) Coring can be done yearly to help alleviate compaction, opens up the soil to allow water to penetrate in summer and help with drainage during winter, and stimulate growth where the lawn is patchy. Once a year, when the soil warms up mid spring, it is advisable to cut the lawn short as possible, remembering the rule not to cut any more than 1/3 off the leaf in any one cut. This can be done gradually over 2-3 mows in as many days but this helps to keep the sponginess which is created by thatch build up, from getting too bad.
With all creeping grasses, the lawn will need to be scarified every few years but this also depends on how regular you mow and how short you keep it and make sure you always use a catcher with all turf types.
Once you have laid a new lawn, depending on the time of year and lawn type, below are a few helpful hints on how to get it established.
It is important to help your lawn take root into the ground to give it the best chance of flourishing. Make sure you are making the most of your watering by doing it for the recommended amount of time and at the correct times of the day.
Water twice a day, ensuring you are “deep watering” from overhead (using sprinklers).
A deep water means the water gets through the lawn and deep into the soil underneath. This encourages the roots to establish. To help you determine how long you will need to provide a deep water, we recommend placing an ice-cream container on the lawn under the sprinklers. Time how long it takes for the container to collect 2.5cm (1 inch) of water. This is considered a deep water.
Water once a day, continuing to deep water overhead.
Week 3 - onwards
Water deep once every second day initially, gradually stretching it out to 1-2 times a week, depending on turf and the weather.
Once your lawn is established, you may revert to using subsurface irrigation however the timing required will be different when “deep watering”.
Fescue requires more watering than any other grass to both establish and maintain.
On hot days, your lawn may require extra water especially if you can see any signs of stress. Stress presents itself in a variety of ways, including a colour change (particularly grey or purple) or the lawn not bouncing back. If you notice these signs, please water immediately.
To access the most recent water restrictions, please visit the SA Water website.
Lawns are like any other growing living thing; they too suffer disease and are prone to attacks from nature in the form of insects and weather. If you see any change in the lawn or are at all concerned, please ring us in the office so we can advise you the best we can, or arrange for someone to call.
All creeping grasses like couch, kikuyu and buffalo require regular maintenance such as coring or scarifying to maintain their appearance and manageability.
It is important not to mow your new lawn until the roots are established. How long they take to establish can vary depending on the time of the year. A general rule for instant lawn is 7-10 days after laying in warmer months or 3-4 weeks in cooler months. Newly seeded lawns need to be cut approximately 3 weeks after planting, or when two inches in height, with the mower blades set on high and the catcher in place.
After this stage, regular mowing is essential for the long term condition of your lawn. However, it is important not to mow your lawn too short. This can put your lawn under extreme stress and allows weeds to establish easily.
Please refer to the table in Mowing for ideal mowing heights.
Always ensure that the mower blades are sharp to prevent damage to the leaf.
When mowing only remove one third of the leaf blade each mow.
It is important to fertilise your lawn regularly. Regular fertilising of your lawn will help maintain the health and colour, as well as help prevent pests and diseases. After laying a new lawn, we recommend that you feed your lawn 6 – 8 weeks after it has been first laid, and then once a season.
Akers of Lawn offer a follow up service with their installation of new lawns that includes regular fertilising.
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