Planting Grass Seed: Planting On Bare Soil
Versus An Existing Lawn

planting grass seedWhile growing grass by seed is the cheapest method of planting, one has to opt for top quality seed instead of the cheapest seed mix one can find in order to be successful. One way to know if the seed is of good quality is to see if it has been rated by the National Turf Evaluation Program (NTEP). Seeds that have gone through the evaluation and rating process of NTEP will be guaranteed to have healthy green color, tolerance to drought, and resistance to disease and pests.

Aside from seed quality, there are other factors that will contribute to planting grass seed successfully. These factors must be present to ensure proper seed germination.

  • With regards to soil depth, grass seeds must have only up to 1/4 inch of soil on top.
  • There must be good seed to soil contact. Seed to soil contact refers to how each individual seed is in close contact to the soil. If the seed is in close contact to the soil, it will get ample moisture from the soil, which in turn will help with its proper germination.
  • One must also consider the season because seeds need the right temperatures to germinate.

The best method of planting grass seed is into a prepared seedbed or bare soil. As the seed germinates and grows, it will get no competition from existing plants. The grass seedlings won’t have to compete for soil nutrients, water, and sunshine. A prepared seedbed will also have looser soil, which makes it easier for the tender roots of the grass seedlings to push through and expand.

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Preparing the seedbed starts with removing debris such as stones, twigs, and dead grass. Next, level the soil using a rake or board scraper. Afterward, it is time for scattering or planting grass seed, either by hand or by a mechanical spreader depending on the size of the lawn.

Once all the seeds have been planted, rake the area lightly so that the seeds will be covered with soil. Then, spread mulching material on top of the soil. Keep the seeded area moist with regular watering in order to encourage germination. Be careful though not to saturate the area with water.

It is also possible to plant seeds into an existing lawn but one will have to use a larger amount of seeds per square inch. With existing grass in direct competition with the germinating seeds, planting grass seed this way results in a higher percentage of seeds that will fail to grow. Starting the planting process is similar wherein one clears the lawn of stones, dead grass, and other debris. Afterward, one has to mow the existing grass as short as possible in order to increase the seed to soil contact. One can also utilize aeration either via our liquid aerator, a plug aerator or vertical mower, which will produce slits in the soil and thus increase the chances of seeds falling directly on the soil.

Free seasonal remindersCovering the newly planted area with soil and mulch is also recommended. Whether one is planting grass seed on a seedbed or onto an existing lawn, using weed killers before or after planting is not advised. One must wait for the new grass to establish and go through mowing at least three times before applying weed control.

Ensure success after planting grass seed by following up with our natural seaweed Soil Booster Fertilizer.

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