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How do I Plant Grass Seed?

Sara Schmidt
By
Updated May 16, 2024
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Seeding a lawn can create a pleasing atmosphere and add value to a home. Planting grass seed is generally considered a simple process that most people can execute successfully on their own. There is a series of simple, effective steps homeowners can use to plant grass seed successfully.

Timing is important when it comes to planting. The best times to plant grass seed are generally in the fall and the spring. If completed in the fall, sowing should be done well before the first frost sets in to allow the seeds to germinate.

Homeowners must first select the grass seed desired. Top quality seeds may be found through an NTEP rating, which is an independent evaluation made by the National Turf Evaluation Program (NTEP). This rating will account for color as well as resistance to variables such as insects, drought and disease. Researching specific types of seed can be conducted on the Internet as well as in local home and garden supply stores.

Once the seed is selected, the homeowner should prepare the soil for sowing. This method will vary depending upon whether the homeowner is intending to plant grass seed in a new lawn, or is over-seeding an existing one to fill bare spots. Either way, following the seeding, a fertilizer should be used; for new lawns, it should cover the entire area, while older lawns may only require bare spots to be fertilized. Weed killers should be avoided both before and after planting grass seed; they may only be used after the grass has required a minimum of three cuttings from its new growth.

To make preparations to plant grass seed in a new lawn, soil should be loosened two to three inches deep. Following the removal of debris, such as rocks and sticks, as well as any children's toys, garden decorations or other objects in the yard, any remaining clumps should be broken up and softened to a size no larger than a half dollar. Areas prone to holding water should be leveled.

For lawns already in existence, preparation is simpler. The grass should be mowed as close to the ground as possible, and only the top quarter inch of spots being over-planted should be loosened. As with existing lawns, debris and other items should be removed, and water-collecting areas should be leveled.

Following these preparations, the homeowner is now ready to plant grass seed. The seed should be spread evenly in small circles by hand. If the lawn is especially large, a mechanical seeder may be utilized. Sixteen seeds per square inch is considered sustainable for optimal growth. Cover the seeds lightly with no more than a quarter of an inch of soil, and the planting is then complete. The seeds should be kept moist to encourage germination to occur; light daily watering is recommended until the grass begins to grow.

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Sara Schmidt
By Sara Schmidt , Writer
With a Master's Degree in English from Southeast Missouri State University, Sara Schmidt puts her expertise to use by writing for HomeQuestionsAnswered, plus various magazines, websites, and nonprofit organizations. She published her own novella and has other literary projects in the works. Sara's diverse background includes teaching children in Spain, tutoring college students, running CPR and first aid classes, and organizing student retreats, reflecting her passion for education and community engagement.

Discussion Comments

By summertime — On Oct 21, 2010

Personally when I plant grass seed I just toss it out there and something manages to grow. I'm one of those kind of lawn maintenance people that really doesn't care what my lawn looks like. Why my neighbors absolutely hate this method of taking care of my yard, I have to tell you that I love the natural look. If you ever let grass grow out to its full weeks before you would realize that it is very beautiful. As long as you keep it green and it doesn't turn brown or yellow, long grass can be a very attractive landscaping option.

After using euros of my neighbors complaining I finally decided to chop down my long grass and reseed. Following the advice of many different knowledgeable neighbors and gardeners, I tried to create a beautiful lawn similar to what my neighbors have. I ended up failing and just letting new grass seed grow as long as it wanted to. Now my beautiful grass is back and I love it more than ever.

By NightChef — On Oct 21, 2010

I think the best grass you can ever finding any part of the world is that of the grass on golf courses. These people who maintain these loans are paid extremely well and it takes years to develop the skill required to produce a consistently excellent and playable green for a golf course. Because of this strenuous requirement on the groundskeepers of a golf course, these men are usually paid much higher than general partners and long keepers.

Because of this special training often occurs as well as even college degrees that will help people understand with the best way to grow grass for golf course is. If you've ever stepped out onto a golf course and you realize just how high-quality the grass can be period when you get towards the whole grass gets better and better. It's also important to use the right types of grass in different parts of the golf course to ensure proper ball play. The grass right next to the whole when playing golf is extremely smooth and almost feels like tile or linoleum.

By GraniteChief — On Oct 21, 2010

My favorite type of grass seed is ryegrass. This very famous grass type is so much better than the shortstop they planted golf courses and what people typically do in the Southern California region of the United States. I personally am one of those people that like thick bladed and thick grasses to walk in. The feeling of thick grass underneath your bare feet is unmistakable, and it brings out the beauty of summer.

It is critical that you planted the appropriate type of grass at the right time of year and ryegrass has a specific time that should be planted. In the climate that I match we plant ryegrass during the winter months so that can handle the winter weather better. We call the winter rye. Because of this change I can always feel and sense the seasons just by my grass and lawn.

By CoffeeJim — On Oct 21, 2010

It's always been amazing to me how Americans can compete with their neighbors to have the best lawn in the neighborhood. I grew up in a house that had the best grass on the street and I was proud of it. My father was an excellent gardener in exactly what time of the year to replant his grass seed to account for the changing of the seasons.

Making sure that you change your grass type during certain times of year in certain areas is critical to keeping a beautiful lawn. Along with the seed planting must fertilize as well as five other nutrients that the grass will need to survive. Regular mode of your lawn can also keep it healthy and lush looking.

There is no excuse for having an unhealthy one especially when grass is really easy to grow. Most do-it-yourself and hardware stores will make available guides on how to best keep your lawn in the best condition that is possible. A lot of this information will vary from area to area to so be sure to make sure you were reading the proper information for your climate.

Sara Schmidt

Sara Schmidt

Writer

With a Master's Degree in English from Southeast Missouri State University, Sara Schmidt puts her expertise to use by writing for HomeQuestionsAnswered, plus various magazines, websites, and nonprofit organizations. She published her own novella and has other literary projects in the works. Sara's diverse background includes teaching children in Spain, tutoring college students, running CPR and first aid classes, and organizing student retreats, reflecting her passion for education and community engagement.
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