Ken’s Weekly Tips – Don’t turf a new lawn in hot weather

by Ken C | Last Updated: 20/07/2021

It’s easy to understand that when all that is left to finish a large gardening project is to get the grass down the urge is to press ahead regardless. But turf isn’t going to grow in hot weather unless it’s sufficiently watered.

This recently turfed lawn may have to be relaid after it didn’t get watered over a hot weekend.

So save yourself some money and don’t make the same mistake – don’t turf your lawn in hot weather!

Laying turf this time of the year can be a hazardous job, and as you can see, looking across this area is just where the garden has been watered up until Friday night and then left through a hot weekend and you can see what’s happened, that the top has been completely burnt.

If we look underneath the turf, you’ll see that it’s actually quite moist, but in fact not moist enough to actually keep it alive.

Now whether it will come back or not, um, plenty of water there’s an area here that’s had a bit more water. Um, whether it will come back or not is actually debatable. And, the other problem you’ve got is that the cracks won’t always fill in again and you might have to put a screened loam or a top dressing, a lawn top dressing, over the top and brush it into the cracks.

Originally when this turf was pulled together, it was pulled together quite tight but basically it’s just shrunk as things do when they get hot and dry.

So just a little tip from me Ken Crowther, to say if you’re thinking of turfing just hang on in.

Wait until you know you got a long spell of water. You know, in other words, rain every evening or every night so that you can enjoy the sun in the day.

Preferably possibly at the moment it might be now best left to late September and early October if you’re thinking of turfing a lawn or even seeding a lawn.

Happy gardening!

Ken Crowther is an award winning broadcaster, author and member of the Chartered Institute of Horticulture. He has been gardening for over 50 years and his knowledge and experience are drawn on to provide advice and information about garden design, plants for all seasons, gardening techniques and gardening tips. Gardening with Ken's broad appeal means he reaches a wide audience across the UK from amateur gardeners to top level horticulturists.