Although salt is wonderful for melting ice and snow, it can wreck your lawn and make it tough for grass to grow. This is because salt absorbs water and can prevent the grass and other plants from getting enough moisture, resulting in a brown, lifeless yard. To avoid this problem and give your yard the best chance to shine, here are two ways to remove salt from your lawn.
Apply Gypsum to Your Lawn
The safest and most efficient way to eliminate excess sodium is to apply calcium sulfate to your lawn, otherwise known as gypsum. Through a series of chemical reactions, the gypsum will replace the salt in your lawn with a mix of calcium and Sulphur, two substances that can actually improve the health of your grass and plants and encourage them to grow. Gypsum will also help the grass retain water and reduce erosion that may cause other problems down the road.
Gypsum typically comes in pellet form. To maximize its effectiveness, spread a thin layer over the parts of your grass that came in contact with salt water. You may need to use a lawn spreader to get an even distribution over the grass. Afterwards, water the lawn like normal. Multiple applications may be needed to achieve the desired results, but your lawn should respond favorably within a week or two. If it doesn't, then the damage may be too extensive, and you may need to remove the grass and reseed the affected areas.
Wash the Salt Away
The other option for getting rid of excess salt is to wash it away with water. This option is more labor and resource intensive because you need to make sure there is adequate drainage. If you try to flush your lawn when there is no where for the excess water to drain, it and the water will just stick around and create a mess.
Take a little time to determine how your lawn slopes and then dig a trench at the bottom of the slant. Place a perforated pipe inside the trench, fill the trench with gravel about three-quarters full, and then cover with a cloth. The pipe should drain in an area of your property that is unseen or you don't really care about.
After creating the drainage system, heavily water the lawn for about a week, which should be enough time to get rid of most of the excess salt.
For more tips on fixing a lawn damaged by salt, contact a lawn care expert. For grass seed to replace damaged grass, visit a local retailer.