How to Start a New Lawn from Seeds
Although starting a new lawn from seeds may take longer, it’s much less expensive than most other alternatives.
Don’t be intimated by the steps, because planting grass seed isn’t as difficult as you may think. The following information will help.
- Start your new lawn in late summer or early fall, about six weeks before the first average frost in your area.
- Don’t skimp when it comes to lawn seed. Spending a little extra for quality, nutrient-enhanced seeds will pay off in the long run.
- Dig up roots, large rocks, and sticks, then dig or till the top 2.5 to 5 cm. of soil to pea-sized bits.
- Use the back of a garden rake to smooth and level the soil. Remove any remaining rocks.
- Apply a starter lawn food with a fertilizer spreader. Scratch the fertilizer lightly into the soil with a rake.
- Refer to the label to determine how much seed you need, then plant lawn seed with a walk-behind or hand-held spreader.
- Press the seed into the soil with a lawn roller filled with water or sand to ensure the seed makes firm contact with the soil. Most homeowners don’t own rollers, but you can rent one from a home supply store.
- Rake the newly planted area with the back of a rake, covering the seed with about 6 cm of soil. Top that with a thin layer of straw to keep the soil moist and prevent seeds from washing away.
- Soak the area to a depth of 15 cm, using a garden hose with a fine spray. Water frequently to keep the soil from drying out. You may need to water two or three times every day for the first couple of weeks.
- When the grass reaches a height of 5 to 7.5 cm, reduce irrigation to two deep waterings per week. Don’t water every day because your goal is for the grass to reach into the soil and develop long, healthy roots.
- Start mowing the lawn at about 7.5 inches, with the mower set on high.