How to Lay Turf: Tips From Brisbane Turf Experts
For those of us carrying the lawn-proud gene, there are few things more deeply satisfying than looking out across a sea of thick, lush green and explaining how to lay turf in minute detail to anyone who will listen. Our spouse, our barbecue guests or the neighbour’s dog – it really doesn’t matter. When the lawn pride spikes, it’s time to wax lyrical.
Equally emotional is the sight of browning blades, a patch of dirt where you fell short in your calculations, or the haunting realisation you chose the wrong breed of turf.
As the Brisbane turf experts, the Rock n Soil team is here to help you in your quest to outdo your neighbours with the best lawn in the street. There are a number of factors to consider before, during and after you lay your new turf, so strap yourselves in.
How to Lay Turf
Step 1: Choose the right spot
When considering how to lay turf in your yard, your very first step should be to make sure your chosen area is suitable. What is its sun/shade conditions, will you have mowing access and will the new lawn have adequate water flow as well as drainage? It’s important that your new lawn will have all the water, sun, nutrients and care that it needs to thrive.
Step 2: Choose the right turf
Different breeds of turf have different requirements, so it’s crucial to consider your specific site conditions. These include climate, soil type, sun/shade, water access, your mowing frequency and wear and tear from pets and kids.
At Rock N Soil, we offer many different types of turf from Nullabor Couch, Aussie Blue Couch and Queensland Blue Couch, to Sir Walter DNA Certified, Sir Grange, Palmetto Buffalo, TifTuf and Empire Zoysia. Whether you need sun-loving or shade-resistant, high-maintenance or set-and-forget, there is a turf that will be perfect for you. Chat to one of our team members about the best Brisbane turf options so you can find one that will thrive on your site and be resistant to pests and diseases.
Step 3: Prep your soil
In order to give your turf the best chance possible of thriving from the get-go, we recommend prepping your soil so it’s a welcoming environment.
If you’re replacing existing turf, you’ll need to remove it either with machinery or an herbicide. Wait for the remainder to die off and clear any remaining vegetation, sticks, rocks or other debris from the site.
Once you have a soil site free from debris, grab a pH testing kit to check your soil’s pH levels. Within the 5.5–7 range is optimal for your lawn, and if it’s outside of that range you’ll need to amend your soil.
This is also a good time to assess if your soil has a sandy or clay base. If it’s clay, you can add some sand soil. If it’s very sandy, you can add some organic nutrients such as Botando Master Blenders (Signature Series) Soil Conditioner. The ideal is loam soil, which is a mix of sand, silt and clay, allowing for air flow and drainage but also retaining moisture and nutrients as needed.
It’s a wise idea to make the soil gently slope away from your housing foundations and pathways to avoid any drainage problems down the track. Also keep in mind that the thickness of the turf will bring the height up a few centimetres, so ensure your prepared soil is just below the level of the driveway and pathways for an even result. You’ll also need to smooth the soil surface so the turf will sit flat once laid – hiring a roller can save time here.
Step 4: Measure and order
Once you’ve set and prepped your site, measure your yard to calculate the square meterage of turf you’ll need. You should add a 5% safety net to ensure you have a little extra should anything go wrong. Trust us, the frustration of ordering too little turf and having to drag all the tools out another day is more common than you think.
Make sure you place your order for a day or weekend when you have plenty of time to complete the project. Turf needs to be laid ASAP after delivery, so it doesn’t brown out or die on the pallet.
Step 5: Lay the turf
Gently rake in a starter fertiliser (like Lawn Launcher) and ensure the soil is smooth and lightly watered.
Start laying the turf at the furthest spot in your yard so that you can work backwards and won’t have to walk over freshly laid rolls. Lay the turf in a brickwork pattern and if your site is on a slope, lay the turf across the slope, using a spade or shears to cut where needed. Avoid any gaps or overlaps between turf pieces. If it’s a particularly sweltering Brisbane day, water the turf in sections as you lay it to avoid drying out.
Once you’ve laid all the turf, use the roller once again and give the lawn a deep soak.
Step 6: Water, water, water
The first few weeks in your new lawn’s life are crucial. Try to avoid heavy foot traffic in the area and water deeply every day, depending on the time of year. The edges of the turf pieces may yellow slightly, but this is common in new lawns.
Once your turf has rooted into the soil after about a month, you can give your lawn a higher-than-normal mow and keep watering a couple of times a week.
Consult the Brisbane Turf Experts
Remember than no man is an island, and no lawn is left behind at Rock n Soil. Our Tips & Tricks section is packed full of helpful advice. Or swing by our Cleveland store for hacks on how to lay turf from one of our friendly team members. We carry that lawn-proud gene with pride.
Of course once you’ve nailed how to lay turf, your next task is to ensure you keep your lawn well maintained by following our top 5 lawn care tips. Make sure you also check out our product info page for all your Brisbane turf needs. Keep tabs on our how to page to find helpful blog posts like this and more. And if there’s anything else, remember you can contact the expert team at Rock n Soil any time!