Caring for Your
CONGRATULATIONS on your newly sodded lawn. It is
imperative that you keep this lawn saturatedsloppy wetfor
the first seven to ten days. After this period, watering should be done
approximately every other day until sod is rooted.
- For the first seven to ten days water twice each day. Usually
2530 minutes on each section of the lawn is about right, but
your lawn may need more or less time, depending on slope, soil conditions,
and weather. Hot weather may require more frequent watering, for
example, and a sloping lawn may need longer, slower watering because
of runoff. The lawn should be saturatedwet enough that you
can't walk on it without leaving footprints. You may want to start
your watering at the point that's farthest from the house and work
in, to avoid walking on the sloppy wet lawn.
- After the first seven to ten days, water approximately every
other day until the sod is rooted.
- After sodded areas have taken root, water as you would an established
lawn, about an inch each week, preferably in the morning hours.
You can measure this amount by placing a flat pie pan or similar
container in the area being watered. When an inch of water has collected,
that area has had enough water, and you are ready to go on to the
- Mow your lawn as soon as it reaches a height of three and a half
- Make sure your mowing blades are sharp.
- Set your mowing height at three inches and leave it there.
- Bag the clippings. Do not rake newly sodded lawns.
- Mow your lawn on a regular basis, every seven to ten days.
- Due to the lack of topsoil, your lawn will have to be fertilized
about six to seven weeks after sodding.The grass may show spots
of yellowing, a sign of nitrogen deficiency. This is because, as
nitrogen moves through the soil, the heavy watering necessary on
a newly sodded area leaches the nitrogen out of the root zone. Also,
new lawns, freshly backfilled and graded, are often not uniform
in soil type and structure, or in fertility; this can also contribute
to yellowing of the lawn in spots. Unless the weather is hot and
dry, a supplementary application of nitrogen when these spots appear
will boost the grass toward quicker maturity. Lawns need to be fertilized
four to five times a year to become thick and lush. CAUTION:
FERTILIZER SHOULD NOT BE APPLIED IN HOT WEATHER.
- Weed Control:
- Weeds often appear in a new lawn, especially one that is planted
in the spring. The presence of these weeds sometimes initiates frantic
efforts to eliminate them, when in fact, they might be better left
alone. Many of the weeds that accompany grass germination in the
spring are annuals, whose seed is constantly present in the soil.
If they naturally grow tall, regular mowing will be enough to control
them. If they are low-growing varieties, such as crabgrass, they
will likely stay in the lawn until fall, at which time their life
cycle ends. Although they do compete with the grass, normally the
grass plants will coexist with these weeds, and the following spring
their germination can be chemically prevented. Spraying weeds with
chemicals in new grass is risky, since immature grass is susceptible
to chemical damage.
- If chemicals need to be applied, as in the case of dandelions
or other low-growing perennials, take care to follow the manufacturer's
directions to the letter.
For more information on weed and insect control, and other lawncare
questions, contact a lawn care professional, or take a look at the website
of the Scotts