Calling all my fellow gardeners! I wanted to share with you this tip for an affordable grass seed covering, used Autumnal Display Hay Bales! Yes, that’s right the four month old hay bales that I had leftover from my Autumn displays, have found a new form and purpose, as a seed blanket in my backyard tier garden; making my own seed blanket will save me $80.00 this Spring! This is an ever so easy project to complete, and all it requires if the ability to have a place to protect and store your hay; in my case I stored it in large plastic bins in my garage, without lids, to allow the hay to breath! Most gardeners say to seed in the fall, but my grandparents always seeded in the Spring, and now, as do I!
1) Clear your area. I used a blower and mulched under all debris left from the Winter.
2) Rake your area. Rake, till, or shovel your area until the top soil is loose and easily moved.
3) Purchase seeds for your yard; find the appropriate type of seeds based on the amount of sun, wind, rain, and what forms of recreation will occur on your seed.
4) Spread your seed! Lightly and evenly is key here!
5) Cover your seed with hay!
6) Water your seeds daily. In my case, I layed seed today as it was going to rain. Be diligent and water daily, by hand, and do not use a sprinkler.
7) Lay the Hay! That’s right, shake it up, shake it loose, shake it down to the ground! I danced my way to a covered first tier!
8) Do not walk on the seeds. Like tile work, work your way from corner to corner, and work your way backwards, and away from your projects!
9) Allow your seed to grow. Your lawn will begin sprouting in 2-3 weeks.
10) Maintenance. If you grass has patches where seeds have not grown, use emergency my tried-and-tested seed repair kit, bird seed mix! Take two cups bird seeds, add water until its porridge-like, and apply to the ground! The water will detract birds, and help jump-start the seed germination.
11) Grooming. Yes, grass should be groomed, too! Be sure to wait a full two months to mow your new lawn for the first time, and when you do so, make sure your mower is not adjusted down too low, and be sure to be even in your cutting!
12) Aerate your lawn. Use cleats, spikes, or the like to aerate your soil twice a year as well. I bought cleats, second-hand at a yardsale for $0.50!
13) Water your lawn. Water your grass three times a week in Spring and Fall, and daily in Summer, unless prohibited by drought; if drought is an issue consider other means like rain barrels or collected bath water.
14) Feed your lawn. Be sure to feed your law appropriate lawn-feed in Autumn, and a grass-supported food, bi-monthly in warmer weather. Another great tip is to budget-version Miracle Grow is to soak egg shells in two cups water, covered for one week, strain, and store for future use; half cup amounts can be used to cover a 3,500 square foot feeding area.
15) Weeding. If you need to remove weeds, use white vinegar in a spray bottle! Round-up, nah! Vinegar is the way to go; its non-toxic, natural, cheap, and the best weed killer I have ever used!
All-in-all, I had fun with the project and I will continue on later this week! So, be sure to re-use your hay and get your lawn-on!