How To Grow A Lawn From Seed
When your lawn is covered in weeds, unlevel and there are patches everywhere...
At So Green we always try to work with what you have and help it to recover but sometimes starting over and creating a new lawn from seed is easier and better for the lawn than fixing what exists. If your lawn is taken over by weeds, there are more dead patches then there is living grass or your lawn is uneven and full of holes, then it might just be time to say “out with the old and in with new” and welcome a new lawn from seed.
Much like creating a new lawn with turf, the key to creating a new lawn from seed is in the soil preparation. You need to be aware that every minute taken to prepare your new lawn will be worth it and you will be thankful you took the time to prepare in the years to come. Don’t cut corners in the preparation, otherwise your future lawn will pay for it. We have seen this all too many times, where the quality of the existing soil was just not fertile and under-nurtured, making it very hard for a lawn to become established and thrive.
How it works
- Kill off the existing plant life. We use a non-selective weed killer (we are fully licenced to do so) that will biodegrade in just a few days (so the environment is safe).
- Remove the dead weeds. 1 week after killing the weeds we will remove them.
- Turn over the soil. This breaks the soil up and is the best way of aerating. This is ether done by hand with a garden fork, mechanical rotavator or a combination of Scarification and Hollow Tine Aeration.
Remove rocks, rubble and debris. Most of the larger piece will have made themselves known when turning the soil over, they will need to be raked out, sieved or screened. Once you have just soil remaining, you’re getting closer to having the ideal conditions for grass to thrive.
Level & Roller. We can now landscape the area. Usually this means making the area as flat as possible. We usually level and roller at least twice to get the best finish possible.
- Mix in topdressing. We like to add in as much high quality top dressing as is possible, this contains compost, and will give the new lawn a boost of nutrition and the strongest start, and best chances at flourishing in the future.
- Level & Roller… again. No rocks required in lawn creating!
- Leave to stale. This is not an essential step, but it can be advantageous. Leaving the site to stale for a week or two, means that the fluffier, lighter soil will begin to compress and we will be able to see which, if any, areas require more leveling. At this point new weeds will have also appeared. These would have been laying dormant in the soil until we disturbed them by turning over the soil. So we will apply a second dose of weed killer.
- Sow quality grass seed. There are many quality mixes available but we use a mix of 5 varieties including Rye and Fescue to give your lawn strength due to the biodiversity.
- Spread the seed. We use our professional grade spreader to evenly spread the seed at the correct application rate. Too much seed can create too much competition for the growing seeds, and too little means there will be bald patches.
- Mix the seed and soil. We rake or use our drag matt to mix the seed into the soil as evenly as possible.
- Apply fertiliser. This will give the new seeds a boost and get them growing strong, and quickly.
- Regular watering. New seeds need a lot of water to ensure that they are well established. The idea is to draw the roots down deep into the prepared soil.
As a guide we recommend:
Weeks 1 & 2: Water once a day for 30 minutes.
Weeks 3 & 4: Water every other day for 40 minutes.
Weeks 5 & 6: Water every 3rd day for 50 minutes.
Weeks 7 plus: Water once or twice a week for 60 minutes.
- Don’t walk on the grass seed. It is important not to disturb the new lawn for the first 3 to 6 weeks. Grass is hardy but you can still damage new grass. Let the new seeds become well established before putting them under any stress.
- Mowing. Do this as little as possible for the first 6 weeks. Perhaps as little as every 2 or 3 weeks, and do it on the highest mower setting.
- Leveling. Over time soil becomes compacted, this can make your lawn uneven, but don’t worry, this is normal. The simple solution is to add sandy topdressing to the lowest areas gradually over time.
- Overseeding and Bio Booster Spray. Once your new lawn begins to germinate, some areas will grow better than others, which is why we will revisit your lawn at 3 and 6 week intervals to carry out overseeding of the less flourishing areas and apply a beneficial Bio Booster Spray that is made up of natural, highly nutritious seaweed extract.
- Introduce regular maintenance and a Lawn Care Programme. Once established your new lawn will be looking great. However, there may be a few troublesome weeds that will need to be dealt with and that’s where an annual lawn care programme is key to keeping your lawn looking its best. This includes Seasonal Treatments of Fertiliser, Weed Killer and Moss Control, and Annual Treatments such as Scarification and Hollow Tine Aeration.
What to expect
We will need to visit your lawn 2 weeks prior to the work being carried out so we can kill off the existing lawn. Then, if we are turning over the soil and leaving it to stale, this will take a further 3 weeks. Once we begin it should not take longer than a day in most cases for the work to be completed.
How to prepare
There is little you can do, but once you know that you want a new lawn, we can make preparations on a individual basis, because all lawns are different and require slightly different preparation.
You only really need to water your lawn when the soil is dry but preferably before the grass shows signs of drought – when it becomes pale or starts to brown. You can test the moisture level of your soil by using a screwdriver; push it into the soil, if it is dry when removed you probably need to water. For best results and to avoid problems of drought damage or dehydration don’t wait until you think the soil is dry, we advise you to follow a regular watering schedule. Find out how to best keep your lawn hydrated all year round.
Generally during growing seasons (spring and autumn) you can mow your lawn shorter, to around 25mm – 30mm in height; however, during summer when its hotter and dryer growth slows, you should leave your lawn taller, cutting it no shorter than 50mm high.
The golden rule is to never cut more than one-third off at any one time.
Find out how to mow like a pro.
Yes and for best results after every treatment we recommend leaving the treated area/s undisturbed for a minimum of 3 hours to ensure the fertiliser can properly penetrate the soil and to prevent children and pets from eating the fertiliser. Grazing animal, like rabbits, should not be allowed on treated areas for 2 weeks.
– Spring (March – May)
– Autumn (September – October)
– Cost effective
– Seeds Grow Naturally
– Soil Preparation
– Top Dressing (30% compost)
– High Quality Grass Seed
Request your Free Lawn Analysis
Before treating your lawn we will assess your lawn using our 12 Point Lawn Analysis. We will discuss the results with you and create a tailored lawn care programme that suits your lawn so you can make the most of your garden and leave the hard work to us.