Can you believe it is already December? With just 24 days to go until the ‘big day’ there’s definitely still time to lay some fresh turf in your garden in preparation for the summer months. It’s a common misconception that you cannot or should not lay turf during winter. Providing that you have properly prepared the soil and the ground isn’t frozen, there’s no reason why you can’t lay turf during the winter. There are even a number of advantages to be had if you decide that now is the right time to lay new turf. Other than wrapping up warm, what are the key things that you need to think about if you are looking to lay turf during the colder periods?
Don’t Panic If It’s Frosty
Believe it or not, frost isn’t actually damaging to turf. To have turf rolls freezing and defrosting is no different than if you were to defrost food items from your freezer at home. Frozen turf rolls can and do keep for a long time, and can then be laid as normal once thawed. Whilst you cannot lay turf onto frozen ground, frosty weather once turf has been laid isn’t a problem and will not cause any lifting or damage to your new grass. The advantage of cold weather is that prior to laying, the turf rolls actually last longer than during the summer months so you are under less of a time pressure to get them down.
Handle With Care
It’s important to ensure that you are handling your new turf carefully, especially if it has recently thawed. The defrosting process may cause the turf to be damp and heavy so make sure you are lifting, carrying and laying it carefully so as not to cause any damage. When laying the turf make sure you are lifting it into the correct position, not dragging it. If any rips or damages occur, it should be fairly easy to press the relevant pieces into place, especially if it’s slightly damp – once it’s established, you won’t notice any difference.
It’s Low Maintenance
You may be very happy to hear that laying turf during the winter months means little watering is actually necessary, especially compared to the warmer weather. This is not to say that you can ignore the watering side all together, just make sure that it is watered after laying and that it doesn’t dry out afterwards. Keep a close eye on this during windier weather. Make sure that you don’t walk on frozen grass as this can be damaging.
This is one of the most important things you need to think about when it comes to laying turf during the colder months. Make sure that your ground has adequate drainage – poor drainage and compacted soil are two of the biggest hurdles you will face. In order to achieve the best results, your soil should ideally be damp but still crumbly, not sludgy or too stodgy. You can always mix in some topsoil to help dry the existing soil out. Use laying boards to ensure your feet don’t create dips or dents in the soil and try to do as much soil preparation as you can from the edge of the area.
Any Other Advantages Of Laying This Late In The Year?
There are several positives if you choose to lay new turf at this time of year. First and foremost, your turf will be well established and (hopefully) thriving by the time the spring/summer months roll around. There are plenty of other gardening tasks to complete during the warmer months so having your lawn all ready to go will be one thing ticked off the list and you will definitely be thankful for that. Furthermore, by giving your turf ample time to establish and root properly before more consistent, active use means it should be in a better, stronger position. The low maintenance element of later turf laying is a sure fire positive point – laying turf during winter will save you both valuable time and money, so it’s a win-win situation.
Whilst you would probably prefer to stay indoors with a cup of tea, laying turf during winter really does have its advantages and removes a lot of pressure from you. There are pitfalls when laying turf at any time of the year, and it’s important to understand and prepare for these so you aren’t caught out. If you have any queries when it comes to laying turf during the winter months, please contact one of our team today who will be able to help.