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What is the best lawn seed for clay soils?


Hi Tui, what is the best lawn seed for Nelson clay soils?

Wallace Marsden


Hi Wallace 

Unfortunately lawns don’t thrive in clay soils. The best thing to do is try and improve the soil structure by applying Gypsum which will break down the clay particles in the soil and improve drainage, but this doesn’t happen overnight and needs to be an on-going treatment for the lawn. Gypsum does not change the soil pH and works on the organic matter in the clay soil to break it down.

Alternatively, walk on the soil with spikes attached to your shoes to aerate the soil, these are available at hardware stores (when they reopen). Otherwise, is there any way to improve the drainage of the lawn by digging a trench, filling it with scoria and novaflow pipe to help drain away the water?

A lot of people don’t like planting clover in their lawns as it attracts bees, but a rye grass - white clover mix might be good as the clover will help break up the clay soil and over time, you may be able to re-sow once the soil has improved.

Thanks, Tui Team. 

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