Asked on Mar 4, 2012

Tilling lawn with green mesh underneath

Clement ChanSpenser CammackCandy Richardson


We are going to redo the lawn of our new house ourselves. Digging the border today, I found this green mesh underneath, maybe 3/4 inch from the surface, clearly from a previous owner. Is this going to be a problem when I till the soil?
14 answers
  • Southern Trillium LLC
    Southern Trillium LLC
    on Mar 4, 2012

    What you are seeing is the mesh that was in the original sod. It is usually just in Fescue sod to help hold the pieces together when cut and shipped from the sod farm. You can till with all of that green mesh, but it will begin wrapping up on the tines. What we have typically done is periodically stopped, and cleaned the mesh off the tines. You still need to till, so don't skip that step. But you will have some extra work to deal with along the way.

  • Douglas Hunt
    Douglas Hunt
    on Mar 4, 2012

    Less of a hassle than buried landscape fabric, but still a nuisance. Good luck with your lawn renovation, Melissa.

  • 360 Sod (Donna Dixson)
    360 Sod (Donna Dixson)
    on Mar 4, 2012

    They like to use it with grass rolls a lot. Yes, it is going to be a pain to get through and as ST stated, nothing for it but to get through it. Are you renovating a large area?

  • Melissa G
    Melissa G
    on Mar 4, 2012

    We're going to try to do the whole front lawn, which is by a very rough estimate 60x80 feet.

  • Cin R
    Cin R
    on Mar 4, 2012

    The mesh is most likely from sod being layed over soil.

  • Ana M
    Ana M
    on Mar 4, 2012

    You go girl! You are going to get to much satisfaction from it and your lawn is going to be beautiful! Can't wait to see pictures! YOU CAN DIY!

  • Bonnie B
    Bonnie B
    on Mar 4, 2012

    Geez.... That's a good question. The same "nylon" netting became exposed at our local dog park. I tried pulling it up so the pups wouldn't trip or get cut. Impossible stuff to break!

  • Susan S
    Susan S
    on Mar 7, 2012

    When you say till - are you saying by hand or with a "tiller"? If using an actual tiller I think you could run into BIG PROBLEMS if this mesh stuff gets entangled in the tines. Just a thought??????

  • Melissa G
    Melissa G
    on Mar 9, 2012

    Given the size, I was hoping to use a mechanical tiller -- keeping in mind what Southern Trillium said about stopping frequently to remove the mesh. I know it's going to be a big job.

  • Aurial
    on Jan 28, 2015

    I'm having the same issue! I decided to dig it up with a shovel and then rake out the grass and plastic pieces. I just did one section and it has been such a pain in the ass that I am considering taking my risk with the tiller for the larger sections. The mesh broke so easily with the shovel (it's about 20 years old), I'm hoping I wont have issues.

  • Roberta Estrada
    Roberta Estrada
    on Jun 13, 2015

    We tilled my yard with a tiller. The green mesh usually broke and didn't create a problem. I was able to rake most of the mesh up while leveling the dirt post tilling.

  • Candy Richardson
    Candy Richardson
    on Jan 5, 2016

    So sorry that some people don't remove the mesh before laying out the sod!! i would start out slowly with a tiller.

  • Spenser Cammack
    Spenser Cammack
    on May 30, 2017

    To anyone just reading this, it usually just requires a box cutter knife to cut up the mesh that gets around the tines occasionally to keep too much mesh from mixing with roots and sod and clogging the tiller. I have just stopped every hour or so to clear the tines. It is a good 5 min break from tilling anyway. Then rake the mesh out that is sticking up through the ground. Whatever is left in the ground was there before, and not causing problems, so leave it.
  • Clement Chan
    Clement Chan
    on Mar 15, 2021

    anyone know if this net/mesh to toxic to grown vegetables on?

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