People always ask me, "Steve. When is the best
time to seed?" Spring and Fall is best, as long as soil
temperatures are around 70 degrees. But you can seed all season as
long as you follow a few simple steps.
NEW SEED SUCCESS
There is no such thing as "bargain grass seed".
It's often full of weed seeds and filler material to make the package
larger. And once it's planted you must live with the ugly results for
years. That's why the few dollars more it costs to buy top quality grass
seed is well worth the investment!
PREPARE A "SEED BED"
Work the soil to give the seed a place to lodge and take root. Core
aeration , Thatching or Slice seeding is a great way
to start. (Steve's Landscaping offers these services.)
SOW THE SEED EVENLY
Use either a broadcast, drop or hand-held spreader. Spreading the seed
by hand is a mistake because it's almost impossible to get even
coverage, so the grass sprouts in patches. To cover the seed, simply
go over the area with the back of a leaf rake or lightly spread
topsoil over the seeded areas.
Spreading a special Starter Fertilizer the same day you seed will make
a world of difference in results. It stimulates early root
development so your seedlings develop faster, and grow much
thicker and greener.
MULCH ONLY IF NEEDED
On sloping areas such as hillsides, or to reduce the frequency of
watering, mulching is good. Be aware that using hay may add some
unwanted weeds into your new lawn that you may not be able to get ride of
later. Strong winds may send your hay across the neighborhood, and trying to
rake it up later may damage the new seed you just planted.
WATER IS CRITICAL
The seed bed should be kept moist. Watering frequently, rather then
deeply, is best. Only the top inch or so needs to be kept moist.
Once the seedlings sprout, watering is even more critical. The tender
young plants will die if moisture is not available to them.
FOLLOW-UP: MOWING AND FERTILIZING
Mowing can begin as soon as there is anything to cut with a mower set
about 1-1/2 inches high. Do not mow when when the soil is overly wet,
as it can damage the young plants. You should apply a follow-up
application of fertilizer and weed control about 8 weeks after new
seedlings sprout to enhance growth and eliminate any undesirable
weeds. Steve's Landscaping can help with a seasonal fertilizing
program and weekly lawn cutting.