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Best way to kill off the lawn

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Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  littlesapphire on 1/26/2012, 8:59 pm

Well, I've been thinking about replacing the grass around my SFGs with mulch so it's easier to mow around my garden and also (hopefully) cut down on the slug population. The problem is, I don't really want to remove all that turf by hand. Is there an easier way to kill the grass? Or can I just put down weed block and mulch right over the living grass?

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  camprn on 1/26/2012, 9:07 pm

You could try cardboard or newspaper and wood chips, that should do it. What a Face

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  RoOsTeR on 1/26/2012, 9:15 pm

There are sod strippers too you can rent. They do a great job and they are quick. The one drawback is they work best on nice, plush, healthy grass. But they will strip it right up! Grass is THE HARDEST thing to kill when you want it gone and the hardest to keep nice when you want it nice and plush Razz

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  camprn on 1/26/2012, 9:25 pm

I cut the sod into 10 inch squares and just pushed garden fork tines under the turf square and lifted it right up. I took all those 10" squares and turned them upside down, on top of each other, building a stack next to the compost pile. It quietly composted by itself and the next year I put the resulting soil into my flower beds. flower

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  RoOsTeR on 1/26/2012, 9:29 pm

I have done something similar too camp (shh, don't tell the wife I used on of the butcher knives from the kitchen) Razz

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  martha on 1/26/2012, 9:43 pm

nKedrOoStEr wrote: Grass is THE HARDEST thing to kill when you want it gone and the hardest to keep nice when you want it nice and plush Razz

Ain't that the truth!

The way I kill unwanted grass at the restaurant is to take the not-quite boiling water left in the steam table and pour it over the grass, or the boiling water left over from pasta. I wouldn't pour water from the tap in order to boil it to kill the grass, but depending on how much boiling one does...???

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  GWN on 1/26/2012, 9:54 pm

I have about an acre of wild grass that I am trying to "tame" it into lovely soil
I have read that weeds carcasses have many micronutrients that regular plants are not hardy enough to dig that deep (IE pulling out a weed is always MUCH harder than removing last years crop, that is if you do that)

I have also read that the roots of dead plants (weeds included Sad ) leave channels in the soil that provide for better aeration of the soil and they actually compost in place.
For these reasons, I cover my "grass" with large sheets of cardboard. If left for 2- 3 seasons, it will eventually rot and the soil underneath is much better for the process. It is loose, easier to dig into and richer.
So do not waste that great grass you have, if you just cover it up, it will provide you with something better...... eventually

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  Noie on 1/26/2012, 10:26 pm

Well, I've never purposely done it, but I do know a few things that work!


  1. Neglect the heck out of it all summer long. Seemed to be pretty effective in many states.
  2. Give it a good watering....right before a good hard freeze. (This is what happens when you move from someplace hot to someplace that isn't...and have no idea what a hard freeze even is!)
  3. Overfertilize! Just let the mixing instructions be off by a digit or two.
  4. Leave something on top of it. It seems like that can be pretty much anything - books, toy wagons, overturned wheelbarrows. Be creative! You could even kill patterns into it if you wanted to.

And there's probably a lot of fun things you could do too! Like...pouring gasoline on it and burning that sucker down! Or renting a pony and riding it all around to tear it up. The goal isn't usually to destroy a lawn, so have some fun while you have the chance!

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  EatYourVeggies on 1/26/2012, 10:56 pm

When moving into my present residence six months ago, I inherited a row garden that measures approximately 20' x 30' and consisted of more weeds than vegetables. I harvested what I could, but most had begun to bolt and I left everything since, to take its course.

Citing the methods mentioned by others above, I'd like to level the garden, cover it with cardboard and wood chips, then put my SFG boxes on top of that. My question(s) are:

1) Will that combination (cardboard/wood chips) be enough to smother the weeds and existing vegetables, keeping them from eventually growing up through my Mel's Mix as well as it works on lawn?

2) Should I still use weed barrier cloth or is it overkill at that point?

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  littlejo on 1/26/2012, 11:27 pm

I put my beds on freshly mowed lawn. I put cardboard first, then weed barrier, over all area, including walkways, put in the boxes, then put mulch in the walkways. The only grass/weeds coming up is at the edge where the cardboard/weed barrier ends.

Be sure to overlap the weed cloth, or weeds/grass will find their way in.

For the strong weed sneaking in the walkway, spray with vinegar to kill.

Jo

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  llama momma on 1/27/2012, 5:33 am

I use roof shingles butted up close to the wood and slightly slid it just under the edge of the wood. Mowing was a snap and no weeds. This year I may cover the shingles with mulch or decorative stone.

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  walshevak on 1/27/2012, 5:42 am

I was replacing my old carpet with hardwood floors and asked the guys to take the l/r carpet out in one piece. Used it to cover an area where I want to eventually put pavers for a patio. Killed the grass though.



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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  plantoid on 1/27/2012, 6:28 am

I once hired one of those Mantis electric rototillers that chop & cut up a strip about 18 inches wide and thoroughly trashed the lawn over the weekend , raked out the grass & rubbish then reseeded it.
You could do the same with a pathway & once free of the remains of the grass put a weed blanklet/ covering or mulch down then every couple of week rearrange things if using sa mukch with a rake to upset any new growth .

RE the hot water method of killing grass ... it brought back amusing memories for me .

As army apprentices in winter 1966 , my intake .
We all sneaked a pint mug of hot strong tea out the cookhouse and wrote naughty words in the grass on the friday night .

The big Saturday morning parade saw the Regimental Sergeant Major go beserk .
For from from his dias he could see the words " SCOTS GUARDS RSM's STINK . " in three foot high letters on the grass bank outside our billet.

All hell was let lose , we got CB for three weeks & loads of extra drills & BS inspections etc. Two guys who were deemed ring leaders got jailed for 14 days as an example of who not to follow.
We also had to pay for contractors to come in and re turf the whole area in nice green grass

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  tomperrin on 1/27/2012, 8:44 am

@littlesapphire wrote:Or can I just put down weed block and mulch right over the living grass?

This is the easiest solution. It's what we did. We did this late in the season, and the only mulch available to us was Playground Mulch - more expensive, but nice and clean. It really looked good. It will have to be replenished this year though.



Be sure to use the longest lasting weed barrier you can get. Most of the stuff sold in rolls at the box stores is short lived, lasting maybe a year. Try a Nursery Wholesale Supply store for more permanent varieties.

We'll probably use cedar mulch this year despite the cost. It should last a lot longer than other varieties. I don't like the dyed mulch - the value added comes off in your hands and is not worth it to us.

T.

PS: I'm replacing all the painted cedar on the right and the Trex on the left this year with 7" high white cedar, as shown in the center.

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  GWN on 1/27/2012, 9:17 am


We also had to pay for contractors to come in and re turf the whole area in nice green grass
.....
SOOOO the hot water works ?? thinking

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  littlesapphire on 1/27/2012, 11:45 am

Wow, those are some great suggestions! Thanks everyone. I've been killing the weeds that pop up in our driveway with boiling water, so I know that works. I just don't know how much boiling water it would take to cover the amount of grass I want to kill, lol.

Maybe I'll try the newspaper/cardboard under weedcloth and mulch method. But first, I should probably ask hubby if he's ok with me killing part of his lawn Very Happy

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

Post  1airdoc on 1/27/2012, 12:27 pm

I used the carboard + mulch method to kill off the turf in an area where I grew watermelon (didn't want to use my SFG for that), and it worked very well. Grass (bermuda volunteers from somewhere else in the neighborhood!) began to grow into the mulch from the edge, but nothing came up from underneath.

In general, it would seem that one good way to kill off a lawn would be to move into my part of the country! I live on 7+ acres (way too much "lawn" to do more than mow), and the droughts over the last 2 summers have killed off all my grass and left only weeds in most of the non-wooded property! YUCK. I've even lost at least a dozen mature trees in the wooded areas.

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Re: Best way to kill off the lawn

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