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Horse pasture into lawn

I have a 1 acre lot adajcent to my house that used to be a horse pasture that was neglected. There are major weeds everywhere along with horse droppings and even bare spots where nothing is growing.

I mowed this area and these weeds don't give up, they came back.

How do I turn this area into a nice, weedless, luscious lawn for next spring?

Re: Horse pasture into lawn


I seriously doubt that you'd even get a roto-tiller to dig into that ground ...and if you did the tiller would suffer alot of wear and tear. The ground under horse hooves is soon turned to something akin to concrete......and that compaction is probably harder and deeper than you think. The longer they were there and the more of them there were.....the worse the compaction.

I would ....... 1- Spray Round-Up and wait a minimum of three days to till. 2- Chisel-plow the ground (Odds are you'd also have a tough time getting/keeping a mulboard plow in that ground) 3- Disc the ground one time 4-Spread the starter fertilizer IF any is needed at all. With horses on it, odds are the ground may be "too hot" with fertilizer now. Depends how much time has elapsed since there were horses there. 5-Disc and harrow the ground a second time 6- Seed it (Most likely with a seed-drill as opposed to a broadcast-seeder. Drills set all the seed at a specific depth and the population is very uniform) 7- Keep it constantly damp for a couple of weeks or more to insure a good germination rate.

If you live in the country and desire to do as much of this as possible yourself, then you might check with one of the local farmers to see if they would come chisel the ground for you. You could then handle it from there with a quality tiller. However, I'd let them or someone with appropriately sized machinery do the vast majority of the major tilling/soil finishing. That's what larger soil tillage machinery is for.

You'll still likely have a bit of a battle on your hands fighting off weeds for a while. Until the lawn gets thick enough to choke would-be invaders, you may have to do the occasional spray with a broadleaf weed-killer like 2,4,D (Weed-Be-Gone) or Tri-Mec (if those are safe to use on your intended species of grass). Don't spray any selective herbicide on the new lawn until it's up and growing for at least 6 weeks. Once the lawn is thick and well-established, weeds shouldn't be that much of a problem.

The easiest way for you to turn that pasture into lawn is to hire someone to do it all.

Re: Horse pasture into lawn

Goldhiller pretty much covered it. The only thin I would add is to just spry this year with Roundup and let in set. Next spring when the new weeds come up and are about 6" tall spray again with Roundup, wait a week and follow Goldhiller's instructions.

A. Spruce
Re: Horse pasture into lawn

Unfortunately, herbicides such as Round Up only kill the living part of the plant, not the seeds laying dormant in the ground that are ready to sprout as soon as you turn the soil and bring them to the surface. No amount of topical herbicide will change this. If you till the soil and then lay sod, you can apply a pre-emergent which will prevent those seeds from germinating, however an acre of sod will cost you a pretty penny.

Most likely you'll till the soil and seed the area. In this instance you CANNOT use a pre-emergent because it not only will prevent the weeds from sprouting, it will stop the grass seed as well. Once the grass starts to sprout and grow you'll need to use broad leaf herbicides that are grass friendly. It will take a while to get a good thick grass layer, but once you do, most of the weeds will be choked out. A healthy lawn will over power most weeds, leaving only a few that require hand pulling or herbicidal treatments.

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