Monday, May 19, 2014

How to Plant Grass Seed

Key Steps for Planting Grass Seed and Ensuring a Lush Green Lawn

By Mark Donovan

The best times of the year to plant grass seed are in the spring or fall when the temperatures are mild and the likelihood of rain is higher. If you plant grass seed in the fall, however, make sure you don’t do it so late to late in the season that you run into early winter conditions. Grass seed germinates best under warm soil and mild temperatures.

Always use a quality grass seed that is appropriate for your climate area and lawn area. If, for example, the area to be grass seeded is shady part of the day then make sure to use a quality sun and shade grass seed. The National Turf Evaluation Program is a good resource for find information on quality grass seed and what grass seed is appropriate for your area.
Make sure to prepare the soil before planting grass seed. Ideally the soil should be tilled to at least a two inch depth to enable the easy penetration of grass roots and water. Also, add loam and starter fertilizer if the soil is lacking in nutrients. Moreover, make sure the soil is level and free of sticks and rocks. Grass seed will not grow well in areas where the soil has depressions or hills.

If you are re-seeding an existing lawn, first cut down the lawn with a mower to as close to the surface of the soil as possible. Then rake up the surface of the soil and grass to enable the new grass seed to be able to work into the soil and existing grass roots. Also remove any sticks or rocks on the soil surface.

With the soil prepared now you can plant the grass seed. Preferably use a lawn spreader if you have a large area. If a small area you can get away with spreading the grass seed by hand. For best results, apply liberal amounts of grass seed on the soil. Ideally there should be 16 grass seeds per square inch.

Once you spread the grass seed gently rake it into the soil, and then water it in. Plan to water the grass seed twice a day until it germinates.