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I’m figuring out how to completely strip and replace my garden.

Do I need to hire a turf cutter, or can I can use weed killer to kill the lawn then rotovate it into the earth once dead?

Is one (a lot) better than the other?

Thanks

  • Your location helps us give you a better answer. Some states/provinces are quite restrictive with allowing homeowners the use of herbicides – kevinsky Mar 29 at 12:41
  • Instead of weed killer, have you considered solarizing? It takes much longer, but does the same job in the end without chemicals. – SethMMorton Mar 29 at 15:21
  • Also, I very recently used a sod cutter. It is heavy and awkward but very effective. Sod is also heavy and awkward to move. When considering your options, remember that going this route will be quite a workout. – SethMMorton Mar 29 at 15:23
  • Where are you in the world and how large is the turfed area? – Bamboo Mar 29 at 18:40
  • I’m in the UK, so - cold weather, no problem with using glysophate. – Andrew Mar 30 at 13:05
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I live in Souther California where devil's grass (warm season grass) needs to be removed with a sod cutter, but if you have cool season grass, why not try sheet mulching. It will smother the grass underneath, but also create rich soil in which to plant.

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The most straightforward option is to spray the turf with glyphosate (Roundup, for example), wait seven days (assuming average temperatures) and then rotavate. If it's a large lawn, use a knapsack sprayer and also canes to mark out metre wide strips so you can spray methodically. Be aware that glyphosate is not a selective herbicide so avoid drift onto other plants. Chose a calm day and follow all manufacturer's instructions.

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  • Thanks, I think this is my preferred approach. I don’t want to rent the cutter and have to deal with the turf, and there’s nothing out there we want to keep so no problem with protecting plants. – Andrew Mar 30 at 13:08

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