Instant lawns are not a new concept and have been around for a long time. Instant lawn is a fast-growing, easy-to-maintain alternative to your regular lawn, cut into carpet-like, manageable pieces. Nowadays, it is used by thousands of people all over the country.
However, many types of turf are available on the market, and each type has different benefits and limitations. It’s important to learn how to select a lawn that will thrive in your conditions and your local environment. In this article, we will introduce the best kinds of instant lawn Adelaide residents will absolutely love. In addition, you will also learn exactly how to measure the lawn area, prepare the soil, lay the turf, and take care of your beautiful, lush green lawn.
Types of Instant Lawn Adelaide Residents Will Love
When it comes to weather, the fact is that Adelaide is a city of hot and dry summers with temperatures often rising over 40°C, and potentially freezing overnight lows in the Adelaide Hills winter. Knowing that one might wonder which instant turf can cope with these extremes.
Based on personal experience through trial and error, Littlehampton Landscape & Firewood decided to focus and stock up on the three most popular and best-performing lawn varieties for the harsh South Australian climate.
1. Santa Ana
Santa Ana is a fine-textured, couch grass, which became famous during the 1970s. It is extremely hard-wearing and drought-tolerant. Santa Ana is a fast-spreading grass variety suitable for full sun areas and can tolerate pet traffic very well.
2. Fine Leaf Kikuyu
Fine Leaf Kikuyu grass is widely popular in South Australia. This variety has high drought tolerance and hard-wearing qualities. Fine Leaf Kikuyu can grow with very little water and thrives in South Australia’s dry and hot weather. It is a very aggressive lawn and perfect for areas with high traffic demands and for full sun areas.
3. Kenda Kikuyu
Unlike common fast-spreading Kikuyu grasses, this Kenda grass variety is bred to produce minimal seed head, which means that it doesn’t spread very quickly. Of all the warm season turfs, Kenda grass has the best winter color. It copes well under drought conditions and is an ideal choice for areas with severe water restrictions and droughts.
From our personal experience, growing Sir Walter Buffalo Lawn varieties did not provide satisfactory results among all the other available lawn varieties. Our low soil temperatures in winter have an extremely negative effect on those types of grasses.
What are the benefits of using instant lawns?
Instant lawns provide an immediate and permanent response for simple landscaping and eye-catching results. While there are numerous advantages, there are a few things one might consider negative when it comes to instant lawns. We will list only a few of the most important ones below.
Advantages of instant lawns:
1) Limited weeds growing through the surface of the lawn
2) Having an already established, beautiful lawn would give you more time to spend inside with your family rather than outside every weekend digging, planting seeds, and watering to help the lawn grow over a long period of time.
3) An already established lawn looks much better compared to a gradually established lawn as the grass color and texture are quite different
4) Mowing the lawn on an even surface with a ready-made lawn would certainly be quite an advantage
5) With minimal maintenance, this would reduce the manual labor involved to keep the lawn tidy.
Disadvantages of instant lawns:
1) There would be labor involved in laying the instant turf as the process would include the preparation of the soil, getting the surface smooth, and possibly hiring a bobcat to minimize the time it would take to dig it up manually with a shovel.
2) Selecting the correct turf to suit the climate of your location needs to be considered, as the turf may not be suitable for climate conditions.
How to install instant lawn
If you aren’t one bit of an expert at this sort of thing, you might want to consider asking someone experienced to assist you or hiring a professional landscaping service. While turf can become a new lawn in a matter of hours, proper soil preparation prior to laying is essential to the lawn’s survival.
For new gardens and lawn areas, making a landscape plan is an excellent idea. The amount of site preparation will vary from site to site, but remember the more time and effort that is put into preparing your instant lawn area, the better your end result will be.
Generally, a few principles must be adhered to when installing instant lawns.
Step 1: Measuring the Lawn Area
Measuring the area is a crucial step in order to calculate how much lawn one needs to buy. The traditional way to do that is using a simple W(width) * L(length) formula for areas without irregular shapes. Most of the time, however, the area measured will not be a square or a rectangle.
For irregular shapes, it is necessary to divide the area into smaller squares or triangles, calculate each of the sections separately, and add them together.
To ensure that the job can be completed without any problems, it is a good idea to order an additional m2 or two when ordering turf.
Step 2: Preparing the lawn area
Firstly, all the rocks, stones, old lawn remains and weeds should be removed. The weed killer should be used at least 14 days before laying the instant turf. In case of very stubborn weeds, the area might have to be re-sprayed in order to control the invasive weeds and therefore, planned in advance. Once all lawn and weeds have been removed, the area should be smooth and leveled to a depth of 10cm. If the soil is acidic and has low PH levels, about 500 grams of limestone per m2 should be mixed into the soil well, and if the soil has high clay content, gypsum can be added instead. For best results lay your lawn the day it is delivered. If you cannot do this, make sure your turf is in the shade and is kept moist.
Step 4: Leveling the soil
Level the soil one last time with a rake or a straight piece of wood. Make sure you spend the extra time necessary to ensure that you have a level surface. This will result in a better outcome and a more even mowing surface.
Step 5: Laying the turf
The soil should be moist before laying the turf, but not too wet. Ideally, your turf should be laid along straight edges, such as paths, driveways, or fences. To ensure all edges are neatly tucked in and that there are no overlaps, the rows of turf should be staggered like bricks. In the case of a slope, it’s best to lay the instant lawn across the slope rather than down. After laying it down all the air pockets should be removed by a roller, as this will ensure good contact between the roots and the soil.
How to take care of the instant lawn
Similar to humans and every dwelling being, the garden needs to be fed and watered. The complete panorama of your emerald carpet needs to be kept in shape all the time, especially during Autumn.
Step 1: Watering
The best way to take care of the instant lawn is to water it regularly. Make sure you water it at a consistent frequency and make sure the soil is moist but not wet – too much moisture will cause weeds to grow, while too little moisture can lead to brown patches on the surface of the grass. Water must be applied immediately after installation. Watering the lawn 2-4 times per day is recommended, but in small 5-minute sessions without flooding. After the initial watering, rolling the lawn with a water-filled or concrete roller will ensure maximum soil contact and eliminate any air pockets underneath the ground.
Step 2: Fertilizing
Fertilizer should be applied at specific intervals during establishment to ensure the plant receives the right amount of nutrients. While the intervals may vary, every fertilizer sold on the market contains detailed instructions on how to use it, regardless of the brand.
Step 3: Mowing
Keeping your existing lawn in good shape requires regular mowing. It’s important to keep the blades of the mower sharp in order to prevent over-mowing and damaging the instant lawn. Mow it at a height that leaves 1-2 inches of grass on top. When mowing, the turf should always be dry. If any scalping occurs, the mowing height should be increased to the desired level. You can adjust the blade height and width by twisting knobs on the side of the machine.