Your garden

Caring for newly turfed lawns

  • Everyone wants a lawn to be proud of, but like many things, the more you put into it, the better the result. These notesare a guide to the essential tasks you will need to carry out to m
    aintain your lawn. We strongly recommend that you refrain from walking or letting children and pets on to the lawn for at least 28 days after the lawn has been laid, this will allow the lawn to settle down evenly.
  • Boy kicking footballIf your turf has been laid before you move in and it doesn’t rain within 24 hours of moving in, you must water the turf. It is important not to let the turf get dry and shrink as this will cause gaps and the edges of the grass will die. If the turf should open up, apply fine soil or compost and fill in the gaps. For watering, a hosepipe with suitable sprayer is the best method.
  • Mowing can commence as soon as the turf starts growing, just topping at first as the lawn gets established, then reducing the cut. Regular mowing discourages course grasses and weeds and makes fine grasses produce fresh shoots.
  • Do not allow the grass to get too long and then cut it short. This will cause destruction of the fine grasses and will weaken other grasses. It is advisable to mow with a grass box and change the direction of mowing from time to time.
  • A lawn needs nitrogen (this greens the grass and stimulates leaf growth), phosphates (to build up the root system) and potash (this stimulates healthy growth). These can be obtained by buying a propriety brand of lawn fertiliser. All fertilisers should be well watered if no rain occurs within 48 hours.


  • There may be an approved landscaping scheme for the development which may require the builders to plant trees or shrubs in your garden during the appropriate season.
  • Planting trees and shrubs can make your garden more attractive, but be careful, trees and hedges take moisture out of Taylor Wimpey_HO_Lifestyle lo res-0124the soil. If you have a clay soil, new planting may cause the earth to shrink, while removing existing trees and hedges may make it swell. Excessive shrinkage or swelling could damage foundations. Much depends on the type, size, and location of trees and the type of clay. You should obtain advice from an expert before planting new trees, or if a large tree dies, or if one has to be severely pruned.
  • It is best, on clay soils, to avoid planting trees nearer to the house than a distance equal to three quarters of the mature height, or one and a quarter times mature height for elm, poplar, oak, eucalyptus, willow and some common cypress species.
  • On all soils, allow enough room for trunks and large roots to grow safely and be particularly careful if you are planting near lightweight structures or near drains.
  • Be careful not to plant trees near your neighbour’s house. They could cause damage and you could be liable for the cost of repair.
  • Recently planted trees and shrubs may need to be watered copiously during their early life if they are to get away to a good start. Before cutting down or pruning a mature tree, check with your local authority to make sure that it is not protected by Planning Conditions, conservation area restrictions or a Tree Preservation Order.