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February 26, 2018 | Lawn Guides

When to Spread Grass Seed – Preparation of the Lawn

When to Spread Grass Seed – Preparation of the Lawn

Before you start laying grass seed, you need to carefully remove the garbage from the site (stones, bricks, plates, boards and chips, plastic bottles, bags, and film). Do not bury garbage in the ground. This will create unfavorable conditions for the growth and development of the grass. Plants in such places will lag behind in growth, will not be able to overwinter well or get sick.

The soil for the lawn should be sufficiently moisture-absorbing so that the plants do not suffer from a lack of moisture. At the same time, water should not accumulate on it as this leads to the death of plants. Drainage is mandatory in those areas where water stagnates after melting snow, rain, and water. Drainage is done in the following way:

  • Remove the fertile layer. Lay a layer of gravel (10–15 cm) on an infertile subsoil and compact it. Then pour a layer of sand (10 cm) and also compact. Put a fertile soil on top (10–15 cm), rolling it with a roller weighing not less than 100 kg. The roller can be replaced by a barrel, filled with water.
  • On heavy clay soils before digging, from 10 to 15 kg/m2 of sand is applied and, while digging up, it should be mixed with soil. On light sandy soils, add 4–5 kg/m2 of turf.

Soil digging is one of the most necessary and difficult measures when planting grass seed. The time for digging a site is influenced by the weather – the soil must be slightly moist, not dry. During digging, it is necessary to carefully remove any stones, roots of trees and shrubs, perennial weeds from the site and break up clods of soil.

The soil is compacted when it is slightly diluted and dried up after digging. Using a long (2–3 m) level board, tie the rope around its edges and drag it along the site. This way you will check if the surface is leveled enough. Trample the site, walking along it with small steps. While trampling, have the rake in your hands – level the ground, collect stones, roots, and garbage. In addition, it is advisable to walk on the lawn with a roller.

Before spreading grass seed by hand, it is recommended to keep the area under steam after digging, tramping, and leveling and destroy weeds, sleeping seeds or pieces of rhizomes that will gradually germinate for several weeks (4–6 or more). To stimulate the germination of weeds, immediately after the leveling, the area should be watered. These procedures take a long time but very effectively clean the site of weeds and prepare it for growing seeds.

How to Grow Grass from Seed – Choosing Seeds

Naturally, when choosing seeds of grass, the assumed functions and the purpose of the lawn are necessarily taken into account since different grass mixtures will be needed for different types of lawns. The main components for almost all grass mixtures are bluegrass, fescue, ryegrass, and some other types of grass. The differences between grass mixtures are a consequence of a combination of different grades and the proportion of grasses. Bred by breeders, varieties have certain qualities useful for lawns – good tolerance of drought or frost, bright light or shade.

Popular decorative varieties are bluegrass and fescue. They tolerate a short trimming and create a thick lawn of a saturated green color. An important advantage of bluegrass is high resistance to trampling. However, it has a slow growth rate in the early years.

Another kind of lawn grass – ryegrass – is valued for good turf, which makes it very useful when you need to restore damaged areas of the lawn. Recommendations on how to plant grass seed, a suitable type of soil, and other conditions are usually placed on the packaging with seeds. Therefore, selecting seeds of lawn grasses, it is recommended that you carefully read the information placed by the manufacturer on the package. It tells you about the composition of the mixture, the date of production, the seeding rate, how many minutes to water new grass seed and other useful information.

A few tips for choosing lawn grass and how long does grass seed take to grow:

  • The quality of the seeds must be confirmed by a national or international certificate.
  • Choose a mixture that is best suited for your lawn, taking into account its type and purpose.
  • It is required to take into account the natural features of the site with a lawn (soil type, a factor of presence or absence of groundwater, the degree of illumination, side of the light, etc.).
  • Buying a grass mixture not in your region, ask the consultant if it will suit the climate of your area.

Choosing a Grass Mixture or Monoculture

Recommendations on how long does it take for grass seed to sprout state that for lawns of high quality (usually parterre lawns) one or two types of grass is often used. Grass mixtures for such lawns are used less often and necessarily from varieties characterized by even texture and color. In principle, one winter-hardy type of grass can create almost any type of lawn.

Quality grass mixtures should include perennial varieties of cereals with good germination performance. Each grass in the grass mixture has its pros and cons. A competent selection implies that the cons of some cereals will balance the pros of others, and thus the lawn will be more resistant to weather changes, soil quality, and other environmental factors. Therefore, grass mixtures are used to create a lawn when there are unfavorable conditions (bad soil, shade) or there are fears that the main grass will successfully adapt to the conditions of the site.

In general, grass mixtures are more in demand when creating DIY lawns, while monocultures are used for professional lawns like sports fields for football, field hockey, etc.

Types of Grass Mixtures

How long for grass seed to grow? This totally depends on the type of the grass.

Grass mixtures differ in the grades of the cereals they contain and other characteristics, which gives them different properties and allows them to be used for different purposes. The grass mixtures can be of the following kinds:

  • Quick – with the help of quick & fast-growing grass seeds, you can restore the damaged lawn in minimum time.
  • Shady – adapted for shaded areas.
  • Solar – well adapted to the bright sun and heat.
  • Universal – to some extent combine the properties of shady and solar grass mixtures.

How Long Does It Take for Grass Seed to Grow? Counting the Number of Seeds

Gardeners are familiar with the concept of sowing norm, which applies to the lawn grass and represents a value that determines the minimum number of seeds needed to impregnate a particular piece of land. This norm for different mixtures does not coincide and depends on the varietal components of the mixture and, in addition, soil properties, and other environmental conditions. How long for grass seed to germinate? The norm implies that seeds of good quality are used with high germination rates, and crops are cultivated according to the rules.

Specialists in gardening have developed a universal standard on how to sow grass seed, suitable for almost all mixtures and areas. It is 50 g per 1 square meter or 5 kg per 1 ar. This norm allows for the seeding to deviate from the prescribed recommendations on when to sow grass seed in terms of the uniformity of seed distribution, germination, seeding depth, etc.

When Is Best to Sow Grass Seed?

Guides on how long till grass seeds grow to say that it is best to seed a lawn in spring (mid-April) or in summer (the end of August). First, you need to prepare the base for sowing the lawn mixture. For this, you should dig the soil to a depth of about 30 cm, while getting rid of the weeds and leveling the ground with a roller. On top of the rammed soil, pour compost sifted through a grid and mixed with sand and peat. The layer should be about 10 cm.

About a week before you can just sprinkle grass seed on the lawn, the soil should be fertilized by scattering on its surface a mixture of nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, and leveling the soil with rakes. For seeding, you need to wait for dry, windless weather. If you have a lawn of a large area, the best way to plant grass seed is by using seeders, small areas can be sown manually.

How Long Does It Take for Bermuda Seed to Grow?

Seedlings appear on the 7th – the 21st day after sowing, depending on the weather conditions. On average, grass seed sprouting time takes 2 weeks.

How Long Does It Take for Grass to Grow After Seeding? Watering the Lawn

Can grass seed be watered too much? It is important to often water the lawn after seeding the lawn. Immediately after sowing it must be watered using a drip method or sprinkling method. You need to do this very carefully so as not to wash the seeds from the soil. Further, when the lawn starts to germinate and the sod will form, do not allow the lawn to dry out.

How Long for Lawn Seed to Grow: Trimming the Lawn

In the first year, do not give the lawn a heavy load, try to walk on it as little as possible. Try to protect it from pets, especially dogs.

Lawn trimming not only maintains its appearance but is also an excellent means of combating weeds. Most of them do not tolerate trimming and after two or three such procedures you will say goodbye to them forever. Mowing also helps plants bush on the surface of the soil, forming additional shoots, creating a dense sod, and growing up with rhizomes.

It must also be taken into account that every mowing is a great stress for plants. It is easier for them to recover if at most one-third of the stem is trimmed no matter what height it is.

The first mowing, as a rule, is carried out at a time when the soil and grass are dry and the height of the grass reaches 10 cm. For the first time, the very tips of the grass are cut, not more than 1 cm. The lawnmower blades must necessarily be sharp. During subsequent trimmings, the blades are gradually lowered.

The density of grass and its resistance to trampling largely depend on the root system of plants. The more often you mow the lawn and walk on it, the weaker the grassroots root and the mass of roots decreases. To save and restore the root system, give the grass periods of rest. This is possible if the ground part grows to a height of 12–15 cm.