Painting turfgrass is a suitable alternative to overseeding a dormant lawn. It also provides a short-term alternative to new sod installation or a complete exchange of existing lawn areas with other landscaping materials. The dye is harmless to children and pets, cost-effective when applied by the hobbyist landscaper and stays on the ground for prolonged periods of time. Information on green lawn dye also shows that there are just a few considerations to observe when doing the job yourself.
The water-based dye contains a deep-green coloring agent. Retailers generally sell it as a concentrate that the user mixes with water prior to spraying. Mixing instructions vary, depending on the product. For example, GrassBGreen Concentrate manufacturers recommend mixing 1 part of the product with 10 parts water. Green Lawnger makers suggest a ratio of 1 part product and 7 to 9 parts water for a dormant lawn; once the grass emerges from dormancy, the ratio changes to 1 part product and 15 to 20 parts water.
Dead or dormant grass makes for an adequate canvas. Other reasons for applying turf paint include the cover-up of pet-damaged spots in a well-manicured lawn. In municipalities where water restrictions greatly curtail lawn watering--examples include Los Angeles and neighboring cities--homeowners now look to lawn paint in the hopes of masking browning yards and maintaining the curb appeal of their houses.
Professionals and hobbyists alike can apply green lawn dye. Designate an insecticide sprayer--professionals may rely on a 50-gallon model--for use with the turf paint. Other options include a hand-held or backpack sprayer with wand attachment. Apply the paint to the grass via the wand in broad sweeps. It is possible to mix turf dyes with herbicides, pesticides and other chemicals to streamline the turf care process.
Professionals charge between $175 and $225 per yard to apply the color; manufacturers sell turf dye for approximately $180 per 2 1/2-gallon container, which lasts a homeowner for about two years. Depending on the lawn dye, the finished product provides a lush green grass appearance for up to 90 days, or until the homeowners mows the lawn. Manufacturers suggest that the use of turf paint reduces watering up to 20 percent.
Lawn dye requires dry turf for a thorough coating. Wait until midday--when any dew or moisture has evaporated--before applying the paint. Do not let the project linger until late in the day, since evening dew interferes with proper drying; it takes about 45 minutes before the paint is dry to the touch. Choose a day when the temperature is above 40 degrees F.
Green lawn dye lastingly stains walkways or driveways made from concrete or flagstones. Protect these areas with cardboard or plastic sheeting while applying the paint.