Installing sod instead of planting grass seed allows you to have a green lush lawn right away. Keeping the sod green and healthy will depend on how it’s installed and cared for while the roots are establishing and growing into the soil beneath the sod. There is a right way and a wrong way to install and care for new sod. Landscaping your home is a wise investment of your time and money. In fact spending, just 5% of the value of your home to do landscaping can reap up to a 150% return on your investment. If you are planning to lay sod for a new lawn or simply want to make your lawn look better, follow these guidelines for a great result…
Do Take Accurate Measurements
In order to calculate the amount of sod required you must measure the length and width of the areas in feet. Length Width= square feet divided by 9 will give you the number of square yards needed. Sod is more expensive than seed so you will want to buy only what you need to cover the area in question.
Get The Best Soil From a Local Aggregate Company Like Bray Topsoil & Gravel
You can have your topsoil delivered to you by a specialized aggregate hauler that will bring the best soil possible so that your sod lays flat and grows best. Don’t lay sod on soil that hasn’t been prepared. Prepare the soil by removing debris and weeds. Sod cannot be laid down over grass and weeds. You also want to apply an herbicide 10 to 14 days prior to sod installation to get rid of any weeds. Pre-fertilize the soil. Use a rototiller to break up the soil so it’s not compacted. Loose soil will allow the sod’s roots to grow downwards into the soil to establish a healthy root system. Compacted soil can prevent the roots from penetrating the soil for good root establishment. Level the ground with a hard rake so the sod doesn’t stick up in some places and dip in others. Once that is done press your soil level using a lawn roller filling in any lower areas and then rolling again.
Do a Proper Installation
Install day of delivery! Same-day installation of your sod is imperative to the success of the establishment. Sod is a living plant that requires immediate water, nutrients, and air to live and establish itself.
- Start at a straight line such as a driveway or walk.
- Layout the sod as you would a rug or tiles.
- Make sure all joints are butted tightly together – without overlapping or spaces between strips of sod.
- Stagger the joints in each row like rows of bricks.
- Use a large sharp knife for shaping sod around trees, at flower beds or along borders.
- Completely soak the sod with at least 1″ of water. Start watering 20 minutes after the first strip is laid.
- Roll the sod to smooth out small bumps and air pockets. This will assure good contact with the soil.
Don’t Neglect the Seams
Sod seams are butted together so that you cannot tell where the seams are and, as the sod shrinks a little after installation, you won’t have empty space between the sod pieces. When sod is laid, the piece is placed so close to the next piece of sod that it almost looks like it is overlapping slightly. Pound the sod down with your foot or hand so it is level with the piece of sod already installed to ensure the seam is invisible and tight. Stagger the seams in each row. Don’t line up each piece of sod so the seams are all in one place on each section.
Don’t Let the Sod Dry Out
You need to have an immediate watering schedule
- To gauge watering, simply place an empty can about 6″ away from the sprinkler.
- When there is an inch of water in the can, it is time to move the sprinkler to the next area.
- Reflected heat along buildings dries sod quickly. Be sure to water dry areas more often.
- If you notice water pooling on the sod, reduce your watering.
Don’t Mow Right Away
After about 10 days when the sod has been watered and the root system is developing then you can safely mow. Set your mower height so that you do not remove more than one-third of the blades of grass. Use a grass catcher rather than a lawn rake to keep clippings off the sod. The lawn rake could pull up the loose sod.
Don’t Step on the Grass
Avoid walking on your new sod for at least 10 days, and keep foot traffic to a minimum for three to four weeks after installation, particularly if conditions are overly dry or wet. New sod needs to establish its roots, and disturbance can affect the success of this process. If you must walk on the sod, try to use a different route each time so that you are not treading on the same area. To prevent others from walking on your new lawn, mark a perimeter with stakes and string or tape.
Bray Topsoil & Gravel can deliver our gravel and topsoil to you in the Greater Cincinnati Area!
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About Bray Topsoil & Gravel
Topsoil and gravel delivered to you by Bray Trucking, a specialized aggregate hauler servicing the Kentucky, Ohio, and Indiana region.