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Replacing a Patio with Grass

Question:

I have a patio in the garden and I want grass. I have taken up some of the paving stones and there is a mix of concrete and stones (hardcore I think!). It appears to be quite porous and not very thick, instead of digging it all up is there any chance the grass will survive with a load of holes drilled in? Please help as my time scale to do this has gone down by a day. :-)

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Thank you in advance for your help!

Xavier

Answer:

Xavier,

Theoretically, I suppose you could plant grass anywhere. All you need is a good quality soil (and enough of it) and a site with good drainage. At least 6 inches of good soil is generally recommended to establish new grass, but more or less may be needed depending on what type of grass your grow. Some grasses have deep root systems that need a great deal of soil to settle in. Other grasses are considered shallow root grasses and may need less soil. Other things to consider are how thick the concrete is, how porous it is, and even what color it is. I don't know where you are writing from, but concrete (especially dark colored concrete) tends to holds heat a lot better than soil. That means that no matter how much soil you cover the area with, if you live in a warm climate, the heat from the concrete will most likely end up killing the grass by cooking its roots.

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Getting a new lawn off to a good start is hard enough even with a well-prepared soil base. My suggestion would be to remove as much of the debris as possible now and start fresh.

Ellen

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June 6, 20080 found this helpful

I agree with taking as much of the old soil out as possible. When we bought our house, the back yard was mostly gravel and it has been a chore to get it all out, but well worth the effort.

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