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Questionnaire: What Sort of Lawn Do You Have?

By: Dr Gareth Evans - Updated: 12 May 2010 | comments*Discuss
 
Lawn Maintenance Grass Grasses Moss

Lawn maintenance is a big part of making the best of any garden – and you can cause just as much harm by overdoing the wrong sort of treatment as you can by not providing enough of the right.

Knowing what sort of lawn you have is the key to looking after it, so it’s important to have a good idea of what you’re dealing with from the outset. That way you can be sure that your efforts will be rewarded and you won’t be wasting your time on thankless and ultimately pointless tasks.

So, what sort of lawn do you have? If you’re not sure, here’s a quick and easy questionnaire that’ll help you find out in no time. It’s not a foolproof method, of course, but it should help you get a clearer picture and start you thinking about any problem areas that you might want to sort out.

    1. Which best describes your lawn?

  • a) Almost entirely free of moss, weeds and brown patches.
  • b) Almost entirely free of moss and weeds but with some brown patches.
  • c) Easily visible moss, weeds and brown patches.
  • 2. Is it largely free from lumps, bumps and depressions?

  • a) Yes, completely.
  • b) Not entirely.
  • c) No – not at all.
  • 3. How well does it drain?

  • a) Very well.
  • b) Fairly well.
  • c) Poorly.
  • 4. How does it stand up to hard wear?

  • a) Not at all well.
  • b) Pretty well.
  • c) Makes very little difference.
  • 5. What colour is it?

  • a) A lovely uniform green.
  • b) Green, but a bit patchy.
  • c) More brown than it should be!
  • 6. What does the grass itself look like?

  • a) Fine, smooth-looking leaves.
  • b) A bit mixed and inclined to be tufty.
  • c) Sparse, with bare earth patches.
  • 7. How does it grow?

  • a) Very quickly; soon needs mowing once spring arrives.
  • b) Fairly quickly; some of it grows better and faster than others.
  • c) Poorly and rather sparsely.
  • 8. What about those broad-leafed weeds?

  • a) None at all.
  • b) The odd few.
  • c) It’s absolutely full of them!

Results

Mostly (a)s

You seem to be describing a first rate lawn – the classic ornamental “bowling green” that we all dream about. It probably demands a good deal of work to keep it in tip-top shape, but when it is looking its best, few things in the garden look as impressive.

It won’t stand up to too much in the way of foot traffic – so no marquees on this lawn, please – and it definitely won’t double as a football pitch for World Cup replays, but as a striking garden feature that’ll be the envy of all your neighbours, it’s hard to beat.

Mostly (b)s

Yours is a typical family/utility lawn – and if this is you, you’re in good company, since most of Britain’s lawns fall into this category. Many of the good quality turf grasses probably still make up most of the cover, but there may be some problem areas such as a few lumps, bumps and weeds to contend with, though dealing with them needn’t be too hard.

The joy of this type of lawn is that it can take trampling, games and tricycles without suffering too much in the process – and there’s almost always room to improve it, if that’s what you want to do. If you do think it needs a bit of a boost, have a look at the rest of this site, you’ll find lots of ideas to inspire you!

Mostly (c)s

Oh dear, your lawn sounds rather tired. Still, don’t despair – there are things you can do (and a good look around the rest of this site should give you plenty of help).

Although it may be looking a bit worn out and run down in parts, if the problem areas don’t account for the vast majority of the lawn, it may be possible to renovate it. On the other hand, if it really has gone too far, and you do want to have a “proper” lawn, you’ll probably just have to bite the bullet and start all over again from seed or turf. Either way, at least knowing what you’re dealing with lets you make an informed decision – and will probably save you money, time and heartache into the bargain!

Enjoy your lawn, whatever sort you have.

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