Having a thick, green, and vibrant, healthy lawn is one of the most inexpensive ways to improve your garden and to expand your home’s greenery. With a little preparation and some patience, you can grow lush grassy areas in your outdoor space, even if you’re not a professional landscape artist.
Today, we’ll be talking about everything you need to know about growing grass from seed. Let’s get started!
Step 1: Prepare Your Planting Area
Before planting new seeds for grass, you first need to do some prep work to ensure your new lawn has the right growing conditions for grass to thrive.
Start by testing your soil to make sure that it has the right soil pH levels to support grass growth and to determine if you need to add any soil amendments. There are soil test kits you can get at garden centers or in home improvement stores.
These kits can help you determine if your soil lacks nutrients like nitrogen, phosphorus, or magnesium and help you choose the right fertilizer to use. If there are not noted issues, you can go for an all-purpose fertilizer.
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Next, prepare your soil. It’s a good idea to clear out any weeds, rocks, old deep roots, old sod, and other large objects in your planting area. Once all obstructions are removed, you can proceed with tilling the small or large areas.
Depending on the size of your beautiful lawn, you may need a rototiller. As you till the planting space, you can start incorporating soil amendments or compost.
Lastly, level your ground in the small and larger areas. Use a garden rake to smooth out the soil, fill in any low spots, and break up remain clumps that can obstruct growth and aeration.
To prevent water runoff issues, make sure that your lush green lawn slopes away from the foundation of your house.
Step 2: Pick the Right Grass Seed for Your Climate
As with any other plant, certain grass varieties thrive in specific climates. So it’s best to pick a grass type that is well-suited for the area where you live—making this the most important step.
Warm season grasses like:
Warm-season grasses can survive extremely hot summers and full sun. Plant these in late spring to give them enough time to grow and become abundant in the Summer.
Meanwhile, cool-season and cooler climate grass species include:
- Tall Fescue
- Perennial Ryegrass and annual rye grass
- silver grass
- cat grass
- Kentucky BlueGrass
Cool-season grasses can survive in freezing temperatures as well as cold ground temperatures. Plant these different types of grass in late summer or early fall, and your great lawn will look its best even as the temperature starts dropping.
Step 3: Plant Grass Seed
Fill a seed spreader of your choice with half of the required amount of grass seed for planting large or small areas. To ensure even coverage, make a complete pass over your entire lush lawn in one direction. This is one of the main factors When you’re looking to grow a new lawn or add to an existing lawn.
Once that’s done, for best results refill your spreader and then go in a perpendicular direction from your first pass. This will let you make a crisscross pattern than efficiently fills the planting space and prevents spotty areas.
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Once you’ve spread all the seeds, it’s the right time to top-dress your soil. Placing some peat moss on top of your seeded soil helps retain soil moisture and regulate soil temperatures to have the most ideal soil conditions during grass seed germination.
It can also prevent erosion and protect your newly-seeded or a patched up established lawn from birds.
Step 4: Water Your Lawn Appropriately
Newly-planted grass seeds need soil that is moist but not soggy. Water your seeds 2-3 times a day for about 5-10 minutes for the first 8-10 days for the best chance to ensure your grass plants get enough water.
Once the seeds start grass germination, aim to keep the top 2 inches of soil moist until the new grass reaches a mowing height of around 3 inches.
After that, reduce watering to about twice per week, soaking the soil more deeply (about 6 to 8 inches) each time to encourage grass to grow strong roots down deep in the soil.
Step 5: Mow and Maintain
Depending on the type of grass, your lawn grasses can start the germination period between 5 and 21 days. New grass also takes 4 to 10 weeks for a root system to set well and become established.
During this perfect time, avoid foot traffic since the grass will still be tender. Most grasses need a full season to mature.
When the grass reaches about 3 to 4 inches, you can start mowing. Set your mower to remove only 1/3 of the grass blades.
Make sure the soil is dry when you mow; if it’s wet, you could pull the grass out of the ground.
Once you’re done, you can enjoy the fruits of your labor!
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