18 Answers

Hi gardener mums, I have a question that I hope you can help solve. This is the third time I have sewn new grass seeds. I have tried all kinds of grass but they all last for a while and then die…it is driving me crazy as I do not want to put stones or anything like that down if I can help it, as I love the feel of grass under my feet.

Posted by mom57808, 25th February 2015

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  • We’re having the same problem. Consider what is it making the lawn die? We have a clay based backyard and poor drainage. We also have a big ugly palm and when we dig, we get lots of palm tree roots even 5 metres away from the tree. Lawn roots don’t go down very deep and anything you plant needs to be in great soil. We removed the top layer of clay/dirt and put down some quality soil. We used sir walter turf as it is meant to thrive in all conditions – shade, sun etc. I tried seeds, you can get ones that are mixed with fertiliser and sprinkle on bright green so you can see that it’s even. It grew, then died. We also have dogs… artificial turf has been suggested but I’m not a fan

  • Using turf is your best option. More expensive maybe but in the long run at least you will have grass. Get a grass that will grow best for you. Ask advice from where you are getting it from for the best variety for you.

  • Grass is hard to get started,prepare soil with fertilizer & rake in .Plant runners as I feel they work best ,lots people use the grey water from washer to water ,not all the time But it seems to help a lot.

  • Give up, we used to sow seeds, the ants ate them, we spent a fortune on water and fertilizers, then we bought roll out lawn, it was not very expensive when compared to the convenience and lack of having to water it several times a day and having a heat wave and killing everything off, it was easy to lay, we just needed a good base and if you have sown seeds u probably already have this, the company gave us great instructions and several hours after commencement we had lovely lawn that we only had to water daily until it established which was about a week, best decision ever, instant lawn and no hassles.

  • My hubby is doing landscaping business, he said first soil need to be in good, loose condition. Second, use instant roll out turf instead of seeds and last new lawn needs a lot of water, so best to have simple irrigation system

  • Great tips here. I learnt abit too.

  • I would suggest that you speak to your local nursery.
    You need to make sure you are using a grass that is suited to your location.
    You will need to water it daily and not walk on it until it really takes hold.

  • yeah i know that you can get these tools that aerate the ground or alternatively put nails through old shoes with pointy end down and walk around on the grass. also when you have just put the grass seeds in, be careful not to drive on it etc and make sure that you fertilise it. there is a fertiliser bottle thing that you clip onto your hose and turn the water on, so that you water in the nutrients. super handy and easy. i forget the name though

  • My son had problems with his small grass area for years & finally decided to put a good quality artificial grass down & I think it looks brilliant. The kids & dog are happy too!


  • I’m currently doing the same thing. My cats keep digging it up so I’m doing small sections at a time. I water it every single day. without fail. I’m also adding a sprinkle of blood and bone every few weeks to give it a good kick. My tips would be to ensure the dirt is loose so maybe rake the area first, add the seeds, water, add blood and bone or other lawn food and water in again really well. I’ve read it’s better to give the garden one good soak than several small ones. Good Luck. I know how you feel :-)

  • Hi, I think that if you have tried a few times and it isn’t taking the another option would be to get rolls of turf. We got a couple of rolls of buffalo grass turf to fill some large patches in our lawn. After the initial laying just at the start of a Melbourne summer the buffalo took off and started producing runners and growing really well. In the end I think it worked out cheaper than buying boxes and boxes of lawn seed. Good luck for a great green lawn!

  • I had a area down the side of my house I wanted grass. I bought two rolls of Sir Walter Buffalo from the Garden Centre. I pulled it all apart and sewed it into my dirt. I topped dressed it with a two bags of sand-based soil top-dressing. Watered it and now I have the best grass ever! Cost me about $20 all up.

  • Also ask the correct times to water it. Incorrectly watered lawn can get a virus or fungis in it. That happened to a neighbour of a family member of ours living in the southern suburbs of Adelaide

  • You need to grow grass suitable for use as you wish. You need to consider how much sun it will get, how much attention you are able to give it, water availability, what toys your children are going to play with on it, whether you have pets or not. Some lawns are not as hardy as others. If the area is too shaded you will need a lawn suitable for that situation. There is one called shademaster but it don’t know if it is available nationally or only in SA. Despite what some professionals reckon I would not plant kikuya near a house. It is aggressive and will come up in some very unexpected places. One of my neighbours never planted it but it came up in the middle of their huge backyard lawn. They dug and traced it back to the other side of the next door neighbour’s lawn. Bear in mind I am talking about large blocks of land that they now build 3 3 bedroom houses on, not one house. It will run across under wide concrete paths can come through between concrete paths and house foundations. That happened to us personally and it was not planted in our or next door’s yard. It came from further away from that. The house next door to us was longer than ours but not as wide as the next street behind us was actually a crescent so the yard widths varied. One of the flower beds it passed under actually had a concrete base in it. Obviously there must have been a bit of moisture under there. It was yellowish when it first came to the surface but soon turned green. We poisoned one section many times over a period of 2 years with kikuyu spray but never managed to kill it completely. THe only tiny stretch I managed to kill was where it came through a gateway and I poked a couple of roots of it directly into a bottle of poison mixed according to instructions and kept topping the bottle up for about 6 weeks. I had a cover over the top of it anchored to the ground so no humans, birds or animals could touch it at all.

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