Lawn Soil, New Grass, and How to Start Over

Lawn Soil, New Grass, and How to Start Over

How to kill your lawn and start over with New Grass


Firstly, try to avoid spraying too many chemicals on lawns and lawn soil to kill everything as these are harmful to our river and stream habitats.

There are isolated exceptions when we break our rule but generally we’d suggest you strip off the old grass with a sod cutter, thereby exposing the underlying soil, and starting over from scratch.

While doing this be careful of underlying tree roots. If herbicides are your only option we recommend Killzall by Hi-Yeild. Following their simple instructions should get you the results you’re looking for.

Then you’ll be in the clear with a clean slate to start with.

Key factors in the success of your new lawn will be:


  • Accurately predicting how much sunlight your lawn actually gets during the entire year, so the correct grass type is chosen.
  • The state of health or unhealthiness of your soil and your willingness to correct any deficiencies up front.


What’s the best time of year to do it?


Between August and October 1st is the ideal time.  Next best would be late in the spring, when conditions are favorable and before deciduous trees complete their leaf out.


Do you need your lawn soil tested before you replant?


Yes. This is the only way to accurately know what state of health your soils are in and what exactly is needed to bring them into balance so that your new lawn thrives.  A PH test (Rapidtest) is an easy and inexpensive way to see what your soil is missing.  In the Portland area, most soil needs lime to balance the high acid levels. Visit us at our Portland Nursery and we’ll test your soil for you. 


the best lawn soil for grass

Fescue blend grass. Image courtesy of Great Basin Seeds


What’s the best grass type to plant in the Portland area?

Full to mostly full sun, high use, and a willingness to provide high care: A ryegrass blend.

Moderate to low sun, lower use, and interest in lower water and care: A fescue blend.


Our landscape design team can make your grass green, and your yard a dream!

Call for an appointment at 503-256-2223