The first step is you need to choose a type of top dressing that you want. For instance, you can choose compost, topsoil, or a blend that also includes sand and aged manure. Compost is made from recycled garden material such as leaves, grass clippings and other types of organic waste. Compost is great because it is a top dressing to your lawnand a fertilizer. Just make sure that the compost that use has been thoroughly screened and that it is free of weeds.
The next type of lawn top dressing that you can use is peat moss, and it is also known as sphagnum. It is great because it is lightweight and it also contains organisms that help to decompose thatch. However, it is normally slightly acidic and so you may want to put down a little bit of lime when you use it in order to counteract the acidity. Because it is lightweight, it is great to spread on your lawn, and it does a good job at keeping the seeds moist so that they can germinate quickly.
Manure can also be used for top dressing lawn. Manure is derived from animal waste, (mostly cattle) or from water treatment plants. These should be pathogen free. Also, they should have a pH that is fairly close to seven. We used this for our yard in Virginia, and it made a world of difference. This type of fertilizer is very high in nutrients that plants need. It just so happens that the waste products that we expel are the perfect products for plants to grow. When you are using animal waste compost make sure that it is thoroughly composted and that it is free of weeds. If you put manure on your lawn that is not weed free, then you are going to regret it later.
Another type of lawn top dressing that you can use for your lawn is blended soil. Usually topsoil is fairly heavy. Don’t want to put too much of it down at a time because it can make it difficult for the grass to grow through. Usually you want to apply only about 1/4 inch of topsoil at a time.
Sand also work well for top dressing lawn. People like to use sand on golf courses because it helps to slow compaction. However, it it is mostly inorganic and it doesn’t improve the soil much at all since it is sterile. One possible use for sand is to break into your holes after you aerate your lawn. This helps to keep the holes opened so that water can drain through the sand. Make sure not to put on a straight top dressing because if you do, it can make your ground harder.
How to Prepare the Lawn for Top Dressing
Before you apply any type of lawn top dressing, you’re going to want to make sure that you prepare your grass. You can do this one of two ways. One way, is by power raking your lawn and getting rid of all of the thatch that is on it. Another way, is by aerating your lawn. If you aerate your lawn, you also help to make the soil less compacted. Lawn aeration is a great way to prepare for seed and top dressing lawn. The best type of lawn aerator that you can use is a gas powered coring aerator.