The best time to seed lawns is in late summer, from August 15 to September 20. The next best times are in April and May.
Late summer lawn seeding is best for these reasons:
- There are fewer weed problems.
- The soil is warmer.
- The seed will germinate faster.
- The cooler temperatures help the cool season grasses grow.
It is a good idea to have the soil tested before establishing your new lawn. The soil test report gives the type and amount of fertilizer to apply to your lawn. This fertilizer (and lime, if required) should be worked into the top four to six inches of your soil.
Cultivate the top, eight inches of soil. If you add top soil or peat, rotofil it into the upper 4 to 6 inches of soil. This step can be combined with the fertilizer application. Use a lawn rake to level the soil. The lawn seedbed should be firm and free of large lumps. To get more even seed distribution, use a seeder, such as a drop spreader used for applying lawn fertilizer. Don’t cover the seed with more than one-fourth inch of soil. Roll the surface lightly to improve seed-to-soil contact.
If your home site is like most, it has both sunny and shady areas. You will want a mixture of Kentucky bluegrass and the fine-leaved fescues for home lawns. Kentucky bluegrass tends to predominate in the open, sunny areas. Fescues take over in the shade. Germination times vary as follows:
- Kentucky bluegrass germinates in 14 to 28 days.
- Perennial ryegrasses germinate in 5 to 7 days.
- Fine-leaved fescues germinate in 14 to 21 days.
Once seed is planted, make sure that the soil is kept evenly moist. However, slight drying between waterings is not detrimental. After the seeds germinate, you can water more heavily but less frequently.
For more information, contact us for all of your lawncare needs!