When you come to look at your garden, there can be many reasons why your lawn needs renewing.
Perhaps you have a major home improvement, and construction has taken its toll. Or, you can be moving into a new home, and there is no sign of lawn care anywhere, or the one there is unkempt, and it is easier to get rid of it and start afresh.
In theory, breaking out the grass seed and waiting for your new lawn to grow sounds great; however, this can take too long for your needs, so searching for a faster alternative can be the best option for you, and for your lawn.
Installing sod can be the ideal solution, though even this takes some preparation and consideration. It doesn’t matter if you are laying sod, new sod, or thinking about this method.
Here, we will show all you need to know about sod from the best time to lay sod, to how much it costs, and what preparation you have to do.
What is Sod?
You may think the term makes this item something unique, while in practice sod is something very simple to understand.
In the basic form, sod is a grass that has a layer of soil beneath it, which is held in place by the roots of the grass.
Sod can be grown from all manner of grasses and once cut, and these take the form of grass rolls ready for delivery.
How Much Does it Cost to Lay Sod?
Because sod can be installed quickly, and it gives you a near-instant lawn. It is more expensive than growing a conventional lawn.
In total, it can cost around $400 to purchase the sod for a 1,000 square foot area. Sod installation is extra, and to lay the sod; you can expect to double this price.
Once you see how to do this, you can save a chunk of money and lay out your sod yourself.
When is The Best Time to Lay Sod?
Once you begin to research what is the best time to plant sod, you will see you can install it at any time of the year.
However, there is an optimum time for doing so, and the best time to lay out sod is in the late summer through to laying sod in the fall.
The reason for doing so in early fall is because the temperatures are cooler at that particular time of year.
However, grass will continue to grow at this time. One cool-season grass that is becoming popular thanks to its heat tolerance and resistance to disease is Tall Fescue.
The second best time to install sod is during the spring. Once you reach late spring, it is preferable for warm-season grasses. (Read Do Seeds Expire)
Bermuda, St. Augustine, Zoyosa being some which lay dormant during the winter. Summer is the least preferable time because you may need extra watering before grass takes root, and you can create light and disease as a result.
Sod Lawn Installation Tips
Sod lawn installation can’t be done on an existing lawn, or any soil with it expected to grow. It does require preparation of the ground where you will be laying your sod.
The ground needs to be clear of all rocks and debris, besides any weeds which are stubborn and keep showing themselves. Once you do this, you have to aerate your soil area, so the earth isn’t too compacted.
Other things to think about are grading of the earth to prevent puddling, and checking for soil deficiencies.
Common ones include an incorrect pH level, and it doesn’t hurt to add trace minerals and nitrogen to encourage growth.
Sod installation has to be with 24 to 72 hours from the time of harvest. So, once you order, you do need to be sure your area has had all the preparation.
You also need to be sure, the place you purchase it from can deliver in the right timeframe.
When you receive your sod, to see it is in the best condition, you will see the base soil is moist, and the grass blades are a lush green.
You also need to start the day early because your aim is to complete planting sod within one day.
Once you begin laying your sod, you need to do so in a bricklaying pattern, so the edges don’t run in a single line.
Watering Your Sod
If your sod can be installed in one day, all the better. However, if this isn’t possible, lay out your pieces in shaded areas and keep them moist by sprinkling them with water.
Even before you lay your first piece, you need to ensure the ground where you will be laying has been watered, so it is moist yet not soaked, the day before installation.
Once all your sod is installed, you need to water sod daily with 0.2 inches of water only. You do this once in the morning, and once in the later afternoon for two weeks after installation.
If the weather is hotter, you will need more water to be sure the matting of sod doesn’t dry out. Once your roots begin to take hold, you can begin reducing the frequency of watering.
Once you go through the above, you can see, most of the hard work, growing grass is already done from the producers of the sod.
Until your sod becomes established and it turns into your new lawn, you have little to do part from tending to its needs.
One good thing with laying a sod lawn is it will look even, rather than a lawn you have that may appear patchy, or has weed problems in some areas.
Learn more about your lawn