Lawns - The Good, The Bad & The Beautiful

Episode: 1
Title: Lawns - The Good, The Bad & The Beautiful
Broadcast: Mar 18rd 2018
Presenter: Trevor Cochrane

Lawns have received some bad press in the past but they play an important part in our landscape, and have significant health benefits. Did you know just 6 square metres of lawn provides 1 persons oxygen needs per day?

  • In WA we should only use warm season grasses like couch, kikuyu, buffalo and zoysia grass. Boxes of seed lawns are pretty much useless, the grass species used are cooler climate forms and they require a hell of a lot of water to establish and be sustained.
  • Soil preparation is absolutely vital. Adding organic soil conditioner into the top soil and adding Kaolin clay makes a massive difference to the lawns root growth depth and water retention around the roots.
  • If you’ve already got a lawn down and didn’t prep the soil you can retro add clay. Spreading the clay dust over the lawns surface and forking holes in the soil before watering it in will help.
  • There are a lot of brands out there and whilst there are definitely differences between them the characteristics remain the same. All buffalos are good grasses for WA conditions, so don't get too hung up on a brand.
  • Couch grasses are great fine leaf grasses for our conditions. They do require regular mowing and edging but look good and handle hot dry conditions well.
  • Winter Green remains a preferred variety for sporting grounds across Australia.
  • Zoysia grasses are still fairly new in WA. Empire Zoysia has a slightly blue tinge to it and the foliage is much broader. After 2 years or so its root structure is fully developed, and should it have any setbacks it recovers really quickly.
  • The toughest of all grasses have to be the Kikuyu’s. They were originally introduced from Africa possibly by accident but were embraced by cattle farmers who recognized the value of this tough grass that grows in winter and summer and handles pretty tough conditions.
  • Village Green is incredibly popular for use in public open spaces and is an improved cultivar that is terrific for high traffic areas.
  • Watering is the main issue, how much does a good lawn need? Two watering’s per week should be sufficient, 15mm twice a week has been proven to work well but different sprinklers and systems deliver water in different quantities.

Water Corporation


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