Suitable for... Lawns that have developed discrete areas of poor growth, perhaps from physical damage or wear and tear, should be repaired. Lawns that are generally poor, weedy, or sparse will benefit from a programme of thorough lawn maintenance. If the lawn is really bad, then total re-laying or re-seeding may be necessary.
When to repair lawns
Lawns are best repaired in spring or autumn, when the weather is damp and cool, as the lawn is most likely to recover well in these conditions.
Repairing Lawns Using turf
Cut out the damaged area of turf in a square, using a half moon edging iron to cut the square and a spade to lift it. Lightly fork over the soil in the base of the removed square. Cut out an identical-sized square of healthy turf from another area of the garden where it will not be missed, or use new turf if you have it.Place the healthy turf over the damaged patch and brush a sandy lawn top-dressing into the crevices between the turves. Compress the turf edges with the back of a rake. Water in with a watering can fitted with a fine rose.
Cut out the damaged area of turf in a square, using a half moon edging iron to cut the square and a spade to lift it. Lightly fork over the soil in the base of the removed square. Sprinkle some crumbly top soil or compost over the base of the removed square. Scatter the grass seed over the base at a rate of 15-25g per sqm if no sowing rate is given on the packet or by the supplier. Cover the seed with a light sprinkling of top soil or compost to hide it from the birds. Water in with a watering can fitted with a fine rose. Better results may be achieved by pregerminating the seed before sowing it. Add the seed to some moist compost in a bucket and cover with clingfilm. Place somewhere warm – no higher than 15°C (60°F). After three days, check the seed for signs of germination. If none is seen, check daily thereafter. Once you see small white roots developing, sow the mixture as above.
Sometimes, repaired patches appear a different colour from the existing turf. Using turf from elsewhere in the garden (rather than new turf) to repair your lawn may avoid this problem.