No announcement yet.



  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Basics

    Hi all, this may be a bit basic but I need to dig a patch of lawn up and have used weed killer on it to no avail.

    it said I should see it start to die off in a few hours but I've sprayed it all twice in the last week, only to see it shoot up!

    Do I need to take 6" off the top and drop it in the green bin?

    Advice needed please.


  • #2
    A bit more info needed please i.e.-

    What do you intend to do with the cleared patch of ground ?
    and what was the name of the weedkiller used ?
    Also, how big a garden do you have ?

    If I was doing something like this in my large garden where I generally do not use weedkiller, I would have started by digging the grass off in turves and stacking them off to one side in a pile, grass side down for use later as a soil improver once they'd rotted down.

    As a general rule most of the fertility available to plant roots is in the top six inches of the soil. So if you remove this layer you will be left with relatively poor growing conditions.


    • #3
      Hi Nickdub,

      i used roundup without glyphosate with the weird spray attachment.

      after a chat with my brother, i intend to take top 2 inches off, turn it over in a pile, as you suggest.

      When it is ready, it will have many veg in; proper goddlife style.

      There's very little sunshine in my north facing garden behind my 4 story house, with a tree in as well.

      it's about 12' wide and 15 - 20' long + patio area at both ends.

      i say lawn, its 40% moss, 30% dandelions and 30% grass!



      • #4
        Everything is doable with time and effort. I wouldn't have advised staring with weed killer but if you stack the stuff to one side long enough I'm sure it will be usable again.

        My take would be that building up the fertility of the soil until its good enough to grow decent veg is going to be the hardest part of the job. If you can get manure from a stables or somewhere similar, that would be an excellent start.

        The moss suggests drainage could be an issue, but breaking up the soil with a fork might be enough to remedy that.

        I reckon you'll get there as long as you persevere - good luck and happy gardening



        • #5
          Originally posted by nickdub View Post
          Everything is doable with time and effort. I wouldn't have advised staring with weed killer but if you stack the stuff to one side long enough I'm sure it will be usable again.
          The active ingredient in glyphosate-free Round-up is pelargonic acid. It's an organic acid is and basically harmless, to the point that it's not actually a very good weedkiller. It's a contact weedkiller which will kill only the leaves it touches, and even then only softer leaves; leaves with a tough or waxy coating will usually be unharmed (which explains why the grass was largely unaffected).
          It's recommended only for use on annual weeds (because it just isn't strong enough to kill perennials), which personally I think makes it a useless product. Annual weeds can just be hoed off or pulled out almost as easily. It's perennial weeds which you might actually need weedkiller for.

          Assuming there is no couch grass in the lawn, then rather than stacking the turves I would recommend removing the dandelions from them and then burying them upside down.
          So cut off all of the turf first, then dig a trench, then lay a line of upside-down turves along the bottom of the trench (dandelions removed), then dig a new trench parallel to that one, using the spoil to fill in the first trench, then line that trench with turves, and so on.


          • #6
            I am not saying its right for everyone, but I prefer the Charles Dowding approach of covering grass with cardboard then direct sow into a covering of compost.. Simples.
            My Majesty made for him a garden anew in order
            to present to him vegetables and all beautiful flowers.- Offerings of Thutmose III to Amon-Ra (1500 BCE)

            Diversify & prosper


            • #7
              Originally posted by Snadger View Post
              I am not saying its right for everyone, but I prefer the Charles Dowding approach of covering grass with cardboard then direct sow into a covering of compost.. Simples.
              The dandelions will definitely grow through that, though. Not to mention the large quantity of compost needed to start it off (you need enough for at least a 3 inch depth).
              Last edited by ameno; 05-04-2021, 04:26 AM.


              • #8
                Yes dandelions would still show throw but are easy to pull up.

                By doing it Charles Dowding way you can plant straight away.


                • #9
                  Must say I haven't come across a dandelion that is easy to pull up!!


                  • #10
                    Weeds are considerably fewer and much easier to remove when following Charles Dowding's No Dig Gardening.
                    It is only the first year that you use a lot of compost, after that you just add a little top layer. The soil structure is far better quality, full of worms and good bacteria's. I highly recommend his way of gardening.
                    Nestled somewhere in the Cambridgeshire Fens. Good soil, strong winds and 4 Giant Puffballs!
                    Always aim for the best result possible not the best possible result

                    Forever indebted to Potstubsdustbins


                    • #11
                      I leave the upside down grass piles a couple of meters away from my crops,I find a lot of slugs like the wet rotting grass to hide in (find them on a rainy summer night on the pile). I just add a bit of BFB fertiliser round the plants when planting,mix a bit of compost into the soil when planting. There was quite a lot of big roots under my grass I had to dig out first,some bits of half bricks in there,large stones,needed to come out so bamboo canes can get in etc. When you make the edges of the bed you can feel how good the soil is,my spade couldn’t get down far to begin with so it needed a dig. Lettuce & broccoli like shade.
                      Location : Essex


                      • #12
                        Thank you all for your invaluable info.

                        Sorry it has taken so long, I have a mirriad of powerpoints to write over Easter.

                        I have dug up the half with just weeds and some of the dandelions were deeper than my fork could achieve so needed my spade to get another foot down. They're bigger than carrots!

                        There's some bulbs and stuff that are now weeds and a load of archaeology. Or at least buried bricks only a couple of inches down.

                        it's hard graft but I'm getting there.

                        The grass is next and I have somewhere to pile it up.

                        I will make attempts to get some manure and dig it in but want to get legumes and shallots in as soon as the frosts have gone.

                        It will be a better year....



                        • #13
                          Hi all, I'm half way through digging my lawn up and it is pretty tough going.

                          I've filled my green bin to the brim with dandelions!

                          Some went down 4 feet, is this normal?

                          i have a fir (or similar) tree growing round a rotten galvanised washing line post.

                          Oh and a few thistles.

                          Only a week though, lol.

                          Never realised how infit I was until there was proper manual labour to do and this garden hasn't been touched for about 20 years by the look of it.

                          and I decided to bury the grass to decompose underneath my legumes

                          Cracking on again after my coffee break...

                          Wish me luck


                          • #14
                            Dandelions do go down deep.
                            While the weather is dry tap root sun dry quite nicely and compost very well.
                            Bind weed and creeping thistle are the worst. On my plot they go down to the rock below the clay.
                            With creeping thistle I have found that a single drop of white spirit delivered with a dropper bottle turns the root black a very long way down into the ground. It is a good spot treatment if any deep roots have been missed.
                            Near Worksop on heavy clay soil


                            • #15
                              Thanks Plot70,

                              You are quite near to me, I'm in C'field.

                              The thistles were pretty shallow, just round my tree, but I have filled a green bin with D'lions and it isn't to be picked up for a week.

                              I know the dandelions don't like salt, it makes them easy to pull after a few minutes, but not if they go down 4' lol.

                              Do they send risomes out to germinate? They appear togo as far sideways as vertical.

                              Anyway, no peace for the wacky.




                              Latest Topics


                              Recent Blog Posts