Whether it’s due to foreclosures, illness or legal problems, a short lapse in lawn care can turn a manicured lawn into an overgrown one. As a professional landscaper, restoring an overgrown lawn is one of the most difficult and satisfying jobs you can get. As a homeowner, it can be a formidable challenge that requires planning and work that goes beyond regular landscaping. Here’s how you can put your Billy Goat equipment to work, turning thick brush into a lawn you can be proud of.
Step 1: Brush Cutting
First, the bulk of the grass must be cut. The goal here isn’t to remove all of the grass. Instead, trim low enough that the grass blades can support their own weight. As with any mowing, the grass will need time to recover before the next trimming. Wait a week before regular mowing.
A Billy Goat Grazor will have no trouble cutting tall grass and saplings, but it also has another benefit: Even if you’re thorough in your debris removal, there will always be something hiding in the grass. You’re far less likely to damage a brush cutting blade on these obstacles than a regular mower blade, and the heavy-duty deck will help protect you when these objects are sent flying. However, these obstacles are still dangerous. Always wear eye protection, and make sure no one is within 20 feet of your Grazor during operation.
Step 2: Finish Mowing
With the grass height at a more manageable level, you can bring it back to a normal height. Take it slow: the lawn will be thicker than normal, putting added stress on your mower’s engine. It will also be chopping up the grass you trimmed while brush cutting.
Step 3: Dethatching
Tall grass will leave a thick layer of thatch that will choke short plants. Combine this with the layers of mulch left by brush cutting and mowing, and you have a major threat to your lawn.
After using the dethatcher, make a pass across the lawn with a vacuum. This will remove and chop up the thatch and clippings, making it ideal for mulch. This mulch can be applied to the lawn, later on, to return nutrients to the soil. Dispose of clippings if you have weeds germinating. Otherwise, you’ll spread their seeds when you use the mulch on your lawn.
Step 4: Correcting Drainage Issues
Heavy plant growth can lead to uneven surfaces. Use landscaping sand to fill in hollows and dips, but don’t add so much that it covers the grass.
Usually, overgrown lawns will have loose soil. However, if the grass was left to grow after construction, there may be compaction issues. If this is the case, use an aerator to break up the soil.
Step 5: Treat for Weeds and Pests
Once the lawn has recovered from dethatching and aerating, you can turn your attention to weeds, insects and other pests. To minimize impact, use spot application chemicals to attack unwanted plants directly. Grubs are common in overgrown lawns and should be treated with an insecticide.
Step 6: Reseed
The lawn should be safe for new grass four to six weeks after herbicide application. Establishing new grass will increase density, pushing out weeds and improving the look of the lawn.
When to Lay Down Sod
It may make sense to cut the topsoil out entirely and lay down new sod. There are three reasons why you should consider this option:
– Following all the steps to re-establish a lawn will take weeks. It may take another year before it really looks good. Laying sod will be faster.
– Areas covered in bushes and saplings require major soil work, requiring the wholesale re-establishment of grass.
– Severely uneven lawns need to be filled with dirt, covering the grass.
Your Billy Goat sod cutter will have no trouble slicing the soil, but you still need to trim down plants and grass before soil removal. Tall plants can push up on the machine, keeping it from cutting at an even depth.
If it’s Billy Goat, We Can Help You Keep it Running
Billygoatparts.com is more than just a Billy Goat dealer. We’re an authorized dealer for every one of their manufacturing partners including Honda, Briggs & Stratton, Tuff-Torq and Vanguard. That means you can order any part you need for your equipment from one place. Our site has sections of commonly needed parts, or you can search for parts based on your model. We ship across the United States and Canada.