Seeding a Lawn
Now is the time to start planning for seeding your lawn.
When to Seed?
- Apply seed in Spring when soil temperature reaches 15?C (60?F) - Ideally April to mid-June
- Best time for maximum germination is mid-August to mid-September when soil is warm and the nights are cool.
- If you spread grass seed in the early spring, it will not germinate until the soil temperature reaches about 15?C (about 59?F).
A thick healthy lawn is the best defense against weeds, disease, drought and insect damage. Over-seeding can quickly repair a lawn that is thin and patchy from
- Winter Damage.
- Damage from Drought and Extreme Heat.
- Damage from Grubs, Chinch Bugs and other insects.
- Introduction of a new variety of grass.
Total Lawn Renovation
In some cases the entire lawn may be beyond salvation. This could be due to the majority of the lawn being dead, undesirable grass species, damage from construction, etc.
- If required, apply a total weed and grass killer to kill off any unwanted weeds and grass.
Soil Preparation (The amount of preparation will greatly affect the final results).
- Remove dead grass and debris.
- Roughen area with a stiff rake to loosen soil.
- Apply 3-5 cm of good quality top soil, Triple Mix or Compost.
- Spread a Lawn Starter Fertilizer over the area (follow package directions).
- Rake soil level to a final grade.
- Apply at rate listed on grass seed bag.
- For small areas, apply seed by hand.
- For larger areas, use a fertilizer spreader, for complete coverage apply in two passes - using half the rate of application per pass - one pass at right angles to the other in a crisscross pattern.
- Use a low spreader setting. You should see approximately 2-3 seeds in a square inch (approximately 2.5 x 2.5 cm).
- Use an empty lawn roller to press the seed into the soil or rake lightly with a leaf rake.
- Grass seed needs soil contact to germinate and should be covered by no more than 7mm (¼") of soil (If the seed is buried any deeper, it will have trouble emerging from the soil. Burying the seed is a common reason for poor lawn establishment).
- The most important thing you can do now is to ensure that the lawn receives enough water.
- Keep the lawn moist for the first two weeks. You don't need a lot of water – about 15 minutes with an average sprinkler each day will work. You want to keep the first few centimeters (half an inch) moist.
- Watering in the early morning or the evening works best.
- Use a fine spray so as not to disturb the seedbed.
- During the first few weeks, keep as much traffic off the seedbed as possible. The tender, emerging shoots of grass will not withstand much wear and tear.
- Once the grass has grown up to 3-4 inches (8-10 cm), you can begin cutting it. This should be after about 4 weeks of growth.
- If you need to apply weed control wait until at least 6 weeks after seeding.
- After 6 weeks, fertilize with a premium slow release lawn fertilizer.
- If you have a few patches that aren't as thick as the rest, they may not have received enough seed. Don't be afraid to overseed these areas. The longer they stay bare, the more likely that weeds will encroach onto your lawn.
Adapted from http://www.grass-seed.ca/
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