Installing Drivable Grass with Soil3 Compost [Video]

Allison Fortner
Read posts by Alison Fortner on the Super-Sod blog.
September 8, 2017 3 minute read

If you’ve ever wished for a more attractive parking area or a grass-covered walkway, Drivable Grass is a solid choice. It’s a permeable, flexible, and plantable concrete pavement system. Grass grows in between the small concrete squares and looks better than typical pavement, while the concrete itself can handle up to 5,000 psi.


 In the video below Super-Sod of Cary experts Shannon Hathaway and Daniel Medina demonstrate how to use Soil3 compost and permeable pavers together to create a strong and attractive walkway or parking area. 


Now that you’ve learned from the experts, you can reference their recommendations in these written steps.


When laying your pavers, make sure you take into account the weight the Drivable Grass will bear. The heavier the weight, the deeper the need to excavate. Excavate 6 to 8 inches, depending on the intended load weight.  

Lay a Base

Crush-and-run makes an excellent and affordable option to build your base. Install 4 inches of crush-and-run or a comparable rock product. Tamp it down with a power tamp or manually (as shown in the video).

When tamping down the base, make sure that the Drivable Grass will have at least a 2% slope away from the foundation of a building or driveway. This will help ensure water does not pool at the base of your foundation if you get an especially heavy rain and water doesn’t permeate quickly enough.

To determine slope, use this formula: Slope = Rise/Run. Measure the height of the slope and divide it by the length of your covered area to determine the slope.

Alternatively, to estimate your slope using a level tool, make sure the bubble between the level lines is just touching the line on the side of the downhill slope (see photo below).


The Next Level

Add a 3-to-1 mix of sand and compost. The compost will add nutrition, while the sand provides structure.

Mix sand and compost in a wheel barrow to ensure they are evenly distributed. We’ve taken care of this step for you with Level Mix, a pre-mixed combination of compost and sand. 

Spread the layer of sand-and-soil mix to a depth of 2 inches so it will be sufficient to support the roots of your grass.

After you’ve spread the mix, level it with a rake or the edge of a 2 x 4 board. Then, proceed to tamp down the sand and soil mix. Keep the 2% slope in mind.

Lay Drivable Grass Squares

When lifting a heavy stone product, be mindful of your back. Wear a weight protection belt. These things weigh more than you think!

If laying the pavers against a hard surface, start at the edge of the surface and move away from it.

When planning your layout, it’s also best to stagger the 2' x 2' pavers like brickwork to ensure the pieces do not separate when put under pressure. You can easily divide a paver with a stone hammer by cutting at the seams of the small stone rows.

Once you begin laying the stonework in place, use a rubber mallet to secure the squares as you go.

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Apply Compost

When all squares are secured, spread compost (we prefer Soil3) on top of the Drivable Grass squares. Compost is recommended over topsoil because of the pure nutrition it will provide for the grass seeds as they begin to grow.

Use a shovel to add compost across the Drivable Grass and spread with a trowel. After the compost has filled all the nooks and crannies between the squares, use a broom to level it off.

Plant Seeds

Spread your seed according to label recommendations and then dust with a light layer of compost to cover the seeds — just enough to prevent erosion.

Follow seed label instructions for the variety of grass seed you plant. Fescue seed will produce some nice grass within a matter of weeks, but warm-season grasses such as TifBlair Centipede and Zenith Zoysia will take a few months to get established. The warm-season grasses will spread over time and fill in any gaps, while you may need to overseed Fescue because it does not spread as easily.

Enjoy Your Permeable Pavement

Once the seedlings are established, you can treat your Drivable Grass area just like any other area of your lawn. Mow with your lawn mower when grass gets too tall, and enjoy the look of a permeable surface with some extra strength!

 Ready to start your project, now? Whether you’re installing a drainage area, a parking lot, or even a cleverly disguised fire lane, you can request a quote for Drivable Grass through Super-Sod. Don’t forget to request some Soil3, Level Mix, and grass seed prices in the “additional comments” section!

Request a Quote

Did this help you out? Have any questions for clarity? Leave a comment below!


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