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Lawn damage

Laid a new lawn recently and a patch of it has started to turn yellow. The customer informs me that the patch is in the same area as their bitch used to wee in. Any solutions to this other than digging the soil out and starting again.?

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  • PRO

    Hi Jason, 

    Is the dog still using the new lawn as a toilet? 

    was all the soil beneath the old turf replaced with new? or was the new turf just laid on the existing soil?

    • PRO

      Laid on mainly existing soil. It seems that because bitches pee in the same spot it has effectively sterilised the soil killing all the microbes and everything else in it. There is a product in america to help put life back into the soil but i can't find anything comparable here.

  • If the ground was rotavated and prepared correctly, I would have thought that the urine contamination would have been dispersed sufficiently not effected the new turf.  Sounds as though the bitch has a favoured spot!  Copious amounts of water on the area, returf the patch and a swift size 12 should do the trick!

  • I have the same problem with several clients and their dogs, I have managed to convince them to put a spot of tom sauce in with there dogs meals (assuming they eat it) as this tends to nautralise the acidic wee affect. so far so good

  • Where are you based?  Have you considered getting a professional company to bring your lawn back to life? 

  • PRO

    Most likely from the yellowing a mineral defficieny, most likely magnesium - this is because the high P / K and Ca Content of the urine (potassium and phosphorus salts, but not salt as we normally call it) means the soil is effectively over-fertile in these nutrients.
    This means the Ca & K to Mg ratio is out of kilter, which means the Mg in the soil bonds to the ca/k and also the plants take K up in preference to Mg.
    This results in mg deficiency and thus cholrosis and yellowing of the leaves.

    It is almost impossible that it is the Nitrogen content of the urine as this is very short lived.

    This problem is quite common on over manured fields etc in farming, but far less common on lawns, but from your description, it seems the most likely candidate.

    Solutions:

    1) Heavily water it with a light application of N fertlizer. Keep it soaked for a few weeks, this should leach it.
    2) OR, Take turf off in the area, dig out about 4-6 inch of soil, and replace with new, and place turf back on top.

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