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Laying Sod Sign In/Join 
I recently pulled up pavers to lay sod. There is a layer of sand, landscaping mesh, then a layer of gravel.
What is is the best way to lay new sod?
Can I put a layer of compost down, then lay new sod on top?
Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.
Posts: 1 | Location: Seattle, WA | Registered: Jun 03, 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of mgt
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I'd check with people who lay sod...ask the pros, they'll give you the most accurate answer.

"I've decided to quit my job, drop out of society, and wear live animals as hats."
Posts: 7701 | Location: Black Creek, WI Zone 5 | Registered: Sep 18, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of conrad
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Removing all the sand, gravel and landscape fabric will be required, as the grass roots will be unable to root in deep with it there. Then a layer of compost in it's place will help supply nutrients as nothing has been growing in this sterile soil below the pavers.

In order for the grass to root well and deep, consider tilling the compost into the top layer of soil, especially if it has been compacted by the pavers for many years?
Posts: 9428 | Location: Plains & Mountains | Registered: Jun 08, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Picture of Loonie
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Definitely prepare the ground before you make plans to lay sod. Remove the sand, gravel and mesh and then cultivate the ground to make the sod able to put down roots.
How much the ground is compacted will have an effect on how much cultivation will be required.

If you can dig down minimum two inches (four is better) then turn in the compost the sod will then have a good foundation to grow in.

Prepare the ground before ordering the sod.
Measure the area you intend to sod and give these figures to the sod dealer who can then give you a more precise cost and the amount of sod pieces to order.
You don't want the sod to dry out on the pallet so prepare the ground before delivery is arranged. Make plans to lay the sod the day of, or at least, the day after delivery..
He will also advise you on the best type of sod for your area.
The internet has many websites that discuss how to lay the sod.

Watering the sod afterwards is one of the most important things you can do to help the sod take root.
Also, find a good sharp knife to cut pieces that you will need to fit in smaller pieces.

Most sod needs good sunlight exposure, proper watering, and good drainage.

Whether you wish to roll your sod is up to you.
A light rolling can often make a difference the sod piece is in better contact with the soil.
Do this before you sprinkle water so that slippage is not allowed.

If the ground has been covered by the pavers a long time, chances are it is well compacted and will need attention to ensure the sod can put down roots properly. This may require a lot of work on your part.
There are ways that machines can be used to effect compaction. Local rent-alls might be got in touch with to discuss how to work your soil.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Loonie,
Posts: 458 | Registered: Mar 22, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I have a different opinion having lived in one area that is almost all sand and another that is almost all rock. It is amazing where grass will grow if you give it proper water and fertizer as needed.

I would remove at least half the gravel and all the cloth. Mix the gravel with the sand. Put good dirt on top and sod away. If that get it too high remove more gravel before you mix it.
Posts: 6721 | Location: North MN & Northern AR | Registered: Oct 01, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Contact your local office of your Washington State University Cooperative Extension Service and ask about laying sod. They will have good information about how to do that that will start with properly prepare the soil by removing the landscape fabric and maybe the gravel (put in to provide some drainage for the pavers). Fill the area in with a good soil, something on the order of 45 percent sand, 25 percent silt, 25 percent clay, and 5 percent organic matter would be good. If you simply specify "topsoil" you could get anything, be specific for what you want.
Putting compost in to fill that area can result in a depression being formed as the soil bacteria digest the compost. You want some compost but not all.

The sign of a good gardener is not a green thumb, it is brown knees.
Posts: 8112 | Location: Twin Lake, MI USA | Registered: Aug 19, 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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