We are giving away four copies of Dan Chiras' book The Natural Plaster Book.
Dan will be answering your questions in the finishes forum Monday through Friday!
See this thread for details
Permies likes lawn and the farmer likes Lawn care and soil building permies
  Search | Permaculture Wiki | Recent Topics | Flagged Topics | Hot Topics | Zero Replies
Register / Login


(the sound is wonky for the first 20 seconds)

daily-ish email

micro heaters

rocket mass heater

wofati

permies » forums » growies » lawn
Bookmark "Lawn care and soil building" Watch "Lawn care and soil building" New topic
Forums: lawn soil
Author

Lawn care and soil building

James Stark


Joined: Apr 21, 2011
Posts: 79
Location: Manitoba Canada
I have a fair sized lawn. To be honest, I'd prefer no lawn at all, but my daughters play soccer, and so I keep a field for them to play on. It's around 40% grass, 45% clover, and 15% whatever can survive the mower. I love it, but I'd rather not have to take care of it, or grow food on it. I do refuse to plant it though, and of course never fertilize or water. That is, with the exception of once or twice a year. Here's why:

After soccer season ends, and the girls take a few weeks of no soccer, I let the lawn go. And I mean really go. When it's almost too high to mow (my mower can mow a hayfield!) I go in and chop it all down. I work my way up and down towards an area that has poor soil. This basically blows all the overgrown lawn onto the area with poor soil. So twice a year my poor soil has gotten a thick mulch of "lawn clippings". What's left behind is a dismal, brown lawn.....for about two days. I water it after two days (the only time I EVER water it, and I still feel like it's a waste of water), and the next morning you can already see signs of recovery, and by day 5 it looks like nothing ever happened.

Here's how I see it: The Lawn area is super healthy, with a nice deep root system and lots of clover to fix nitrogen. All those nutrients are drawn from the ground into the grass and clover to make vegetation. So twice a year, I take an hour out of my busy schedule (ok, ok, out of nap time) and help the healthy part share some nutrients with the not so healthy part.

The result? The poor soil (after two years) is becoming rich, loose, and healthy. It retains moisture, and supports some very healthy weeds. Before, not even thistle would grow very well, now I chop the thistle once in a while, and all the leafy weeds that I leave alone are starting to keep it from coming back.

It's super easy, (the small amount of extra work it takes to mow down the overgrown lawn is made up for by not having to mow at all for three weeks), and really shares the wealth when one part of your land needs a little something extra.

Lawns aren't the greatest things to have, but if ya gotta have em, why not make them work for you?


I never fail. I don't believe in it. I only succeed at finding what doesn't work.
Jan Sebastian Dunkelheit


Joined: Aug 08, 2010
Posts: 201
Location: Germany/Cologne - Finland/Savonlinna
That's exactly what I did all the years out of necessity. In summer I drove to Finland for 4-6 weeks. The lawn kept growing of course and when I returned I mowed it and mulched the lawn with the clippings. Easy and efficient. No dandelions, no clover, no nothing but grass.


Life that has a meaning wouldn't ask for its meaning. - Theodor W. Adorno
 
 
subject: Lawn care and soil building
 
Similar Threads
Aerated Compost Tea Questions
Well I might have just wasted $350, what's next?
How to improve my soil and lawn
Help with lawn
organic lawn care for the cheap and lazy
cast iron skillet 49er

more from paul wheaton's glorious empire of web junk: cast iron skillet diatomaceous earth sepp holzer raised garden beds raising chickens lawn care flea control missoula electric heaters permaculture videos permaculture books