Every spring we get quite a few inquiries about over seeding lawns. I’ll tell you the same piece of advice we tell everyone – it may not be necessary! Certainly we can charge you to come out to your lawn and provide a service. We sure don’t want to talk you out of a service we can provide, but we also are committed to treating your lawn just as our own.
Before jumping head first into the work involved for over seeding, it should be determined if it needs to be done or not. Here are a few reasons you should over seed:
- Bare areas exist in the lawn
- The lawn has damage that have thinned out areas
- Overall the lawn is very thin and unhealthy – new grass can help improve the disease/drought/insect resistance of your lawn.
If your lawn is full and even moderately healthy, generally you will not need to do an over seeding. Many times a good fertilizer will help thicken up the grass blade. When the lawns overall health is improved, it will start to fill in by itself and the extra time and effort of over seeding is not always warranted. Saving money is also a nice benefit.
You may not be sure if it necessary to over seed, so allow your lawn care technician to evaluate what is best and most cost effective for your situation.
If you decide to take on over seeding your lawn, it is very much like visiting a pet store in the mall and taking home a puppy. There is work involved in it, but well worth the investment.
For those lawns that need an over seeding – here are 6 steps to getting this done effectively. Either with the help of a lawn care professional, or on your own, these are some recommended steps to make the most of your efforts. Please over seed in the spring or fall, when soil temperatures are cooler. It is very very very difficult to over seed a lawn in the heat of summer. It can be done, but requires constant babysitting.
- Mow your existing lawn. Before you can put seed down on the lawn, the current grass must be cut down to about 2″. Bag your clippings as well. This will help enable the grass seed to make easier contact with the soil. This will also reveal areas that are thinner than others and may need more seed.
- Aerate your lawn. This will help open up the soil to allow water/air/nutrients to penetrate deeper and circulate better. Aeration is like magic fairy dust for your lawn. If you weren’t seeding the lawn, you should aerate on a regular basis anyways.
- Seed the lawn. Walk the lawn and broadcast the specific areas.
- Lightly fertilize around the time that you over seed – Extra nutrients in the soil will always help a germinating grass seed.
- Water daily for the first couple of weeks – depending on the time of year you may need to water 2 or 3 times a day just to get the soil to stay moist enough for the germination process. This is the part that requires work and dedication.
- Mow the lawn once the new grass is 3 1/2″ to 4″. (usually 3-4 weeks from original planting) Cut the lawn down to 3″ and continue on your regular lawn maintenance program.
Following these steps will help move you towards a beautiful and healthy lawn. Be sure to protect your investment long term as well. Whether with Weed Man Lawn Care or on your own, utilize a standard/consistent lawn care program!