Many of us have dry spots in our lawns that we just cannot seem to get anything to grow there. In my case this is because I put too much fertilizer in one area and it burned away the vegetation. So this summer I decided to figure out a way to get new grass seed to grow there.
I started my research by reading various articles online to get a better understanding of how long it takes for the fertilizer I laid last year to dilute to a level that will allow new grass to grow. Of course, I don’t want to pay for a laboratory soil test so I’m testing more conventional ways. Most of the articles tell you to remove the fertilizer (which in my case is too late since the grass is already burned), water a lot to wash the fertilizer away, and then wait and see. I’m not very patient and I have a feeling that the only part of this that might work is the water.
I decided to use gypsum which binds with the salts in the soil. It is often used to tread fertilizer burned yards and since my landscaping ideas last year lead me to burn my grass I thought this would be the best option. Of course, it is recommended to have a soil test done by a laboratory before applying gypsum since it does change the chemical makeup of the soil by adding calcium.
After I applied the gypsum I used plenty of water over the next couple of weeks to make sure it washed into the soil.
After about 2 weeks I took a garden rake and raked the burned spots to loosen up the dirt. I then scraped of the top layer of soil over the dry spots to remove the old, dead grass and bad soil. I decided it would probably be best to add a little fresh soil I bought in a bag before replanting. After applying the soil I replanted fresh seed and covered with a little hay to help keep it from blowing and washing away. Then I applied more water over the course of about 2 weeks.
In my case, this worked great and I now have new grass growing in the spots that I burned with fertilizer last summer.