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I need advice on preparing ground to lay turf next spring on an area in a London town house, about 20 square meters. The area has been neglected for over 8 years and has various types of weeds and small shrubs which I have removed to reveal a sound base of compacted soil. This soil has had small pea gravel spread around the garden, remains of a design or path. Before I lay turf should I rotavate the ground and then compact it again? and do I need to remove all the pea gravel before I turf it? I am hoping to minimise the work but want to ensure the turf 'takes' on top of the gravel.
Thanks, Barry



the pea gravel will be fine but I would rotavate and put some ferteleser in before you do so .

17 Oct, 2014


But it does depend how thick the gravel is. If its thick I'd try to remove the bulk of it and then rotavate.(Unless you are willing to dig it by hand - its a relatively small area. The remaining gravel will then hopefully lighten the compacted soil underneath which will be a good thing if you are on London Clay. Then you need to level and firm the resulting ground but not actually compact it. As its not a very big area you can do this by standing on it and moving sideways a step at a time until you have trodden on all of it. Or if you have access to a plank you can lay it down and walk along that, moving it along until all the ground is level and firmed. It is less important to do this firming if you do the preparation now as it will settle over the winter but it must be level if you want a level lawn.

17 Oct, 2014


For Noseypotter & Steragram,

Thanks for your help. I'll use your advice.

18 Oct, 2014


your welcome barry .

18 Oct, 2014

How do I say thanks?

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