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Ive been gardening on my own now for approx. 3 years. I have been working from my volvo estate, with a trailer. However, space on the drive is tight, and was wondering if any insite could be offered to the best choice of van, pick up to suit general garden maintainence, and small landscaping jobs. can you help?

Im considering laying turf in my rear garden. The garden has been excavated down about 15cm. The current base is a mixture of soil and loose rubble etc. The turf will need to be laid at the pre-excavation level, ie 15 cm higher than the current garden base. I am condsidering using fine/loose rubble and sand to bring up the level as much as possible and then placing soil on top to act as a base for the turf. How much soil would the turf need underneath it?

I would avoid replacing loose rubble with loose rubble Andy.

If you can afford it, add top soil to the full 15cm consolidating (treading) in 5cm layers.

You can use an 'as dug' soil as the base later (remove any larger stones) with 7.5cm-10cm of graded top soil as the top root zone.

It will cost a bit more but a better start to your new lawn.

hi andrew,I started 9 years ago with similar conditions. I think you know the answer. Spend as much as you can afford. Bestest vehicle for the job would be a tipping crewcab diesel. ie del of topsoil shingle would add income. secure space in crewcab for stuff. pre new shape transits are reputedly better, but watch out for rust,dependant on year. LDVs I think have a poor reliability record, but fitted with a ford engine etc, good value. good luck. ian

Hi there - if you have a terrible lawn which is painful to walk on in Summer (hard clay) or dangerous to walk on in Winter (slippery clay!) would you recommend rotavating sharp sand into it? I have done in my beds and it's been good. But how deep and how much sand please before top soil?

many many thanks
Pip H

I agree with you, lawn laying isn't as easy as TV shows make it look like. There are a lot of things you need to know about turfing, soil preparation and proper lawn care. You gave pretty detailed and easy to understand explanations, but sometimes it's better to rely on the help of lawn laying experts. I've had to fix a lot of lawns because of overly enthusiastic DIY-ers.

Great article, and i agree with Tiffany, there is so much to note when you lay a new lawn, drainage issues, soil condition, sun light movement. And TV shows do make this look more easy than what it is, making our job as landscaping gardeners very difficult when we provide quotations and client's think it is expensive as they don't see the work that really goes in to making a garden lawn perfect

Great tips! As someone working as a gardener, I absolutely agree with you. Laying a new lawn is hard work and more expensive than sowing seed, but it gives an instant, lush looking lawn as soon as you've finished.

Thank you very much this helped me so much along with this topsoil calculator uk! Hard work but I eventually got the job done.

I should say that taking care of a garden is a talent and much work. It can't be done from anyone. I found a company for my backyard and they are almost done now. I like what they did with my backyard but I must admit I can't do this even that from here it looks so easy.

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