How to Neutralize Salt in Lawn

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Salt in the lawn most commonly comes from salt applied to roads or nearby driveways during the winter to minimize ice on the roads. The salt is corrosive to concrete and can also lead to lawn damage. It alters the pH of the soil, effectively killing the grass, if enough is used. The first step in repairing salt damage to your landscape is neutralizing the salt in the soil, so it will no longer damage grass. Reseed the lawn to fill in the dead areas.

Things You'll Need

  • Garden rake
  • Granular lawn gypsum
  • Lawn spreader
  • Garden hose
  • Mulch

Rake up as much dead grass as possible. This will allow the gypsum to come into full contact with the soil.

Fill the hopper of a lawn spreader with granulated gypsum. Set the spreader so it will distribute 40 pounds per 1,000 square feet of lawn.

Walk the lawn with the seed spreader. Walk in parallel laps so you do not miss any spots.

Water the gypsum into the soil until it dissolves. Use a regular garden hose. The gypsum will remove the salt molecules in the soil and replace them with harmless calcium.

Cover any bare areas with a 2-inch layer of mulch. This will keep down weeds so you can reseed the spot in the spring with grass seed.

Tips & Warnings

  • Spread peat moss over the sidewalks and streets in front of your lawn after the county sprays salt. The peat moss will neutralize salt on the asphalt and concrete and help prevent it from getting into your grass.
  • Avoid the use of salt on your driveway because it can corrode the concrete and seep into your lawn. Use sand or kitty litter instead, and break up ice with a shovel.

References

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