Adding new seed to an existing lawn or seeding bare patches of your yard are great ways to add to the look of your lawn this summer. If you do it the right way your lawn will look better than ever, but it’s important to follow a few tried and tested guidelines to ensure the best results.
Before you can even consider mowing your newly seeded lawn you have to give it the best chance to survive and thrive. It might sound cliche to say timing is everything, but it is when it comes to a newly seeded lawn. Below we’ll look at how to properly seed your lawn how to know when to mow your newly seeded grass.
1. Seed Your Lawn At The Right Time Of Year
You may have a bare patch on your lawn that you’ve been thinking about seeding, but it’s important to do it at the right time of year if you want your seed to grow and prosper. How do you know when it’s the right time to seed your lawn? The timing may vary depending on where you live, but as a general rule, it’s usually best to seed your lawn in the spring and fall if you live in a northern climate or the late spring/early summer if you’re in the south. Attempting to add seed outside of these timeframes won’t yield great results if you have any success at all. No matter when you seed you’ll find it challenging, but timing it right can make all the difference in the world.
2. Understand Your Soil By Testing
One thing that’s often overlooked when seeding a lawn is the condition of the soil it grows in but knowing your soil conditions is just as important as getting your timing right. We often hear talk of the importance of the PH level of a pool, but it’s probably not common knowledge that the right PH balance is just as important for your soil.
You can take a sample of your soil to be tested at many local garden centers, but there are also easy to use home test kits that you can buy as well. Once you know the condition of your soil you’ll know if you need to take any additional action before you can plant your new seed.
3. Enrich Your Soil
Now that you know the condition of your soil you can enrich it with the right nutrients to give your new grass seedlings the best chance for success. If your pH levels are low you can add lime to the soil to bring your levels up to acceptable levels. You may need to add more organic matter to enrich your soil and potentially some nitrogen-based fertilizer as well.
The important thing to remember is that you don’t have to be deflated by bad test results – there are actions you can take to enrich your soil and ensure your newly seeded grass grows long and thick before you cut it for the first time.
4. Research And Choose The Right Seed
It might surprise you to know that there are dozens of different types of grass seeds. Some grow better in shaded areas, while others thrive in drier and hotter climates. You may already know what type of grass makes up your lawn, but if you’re not sure it’s best to consult with neighbors or a local home improvement store to find out what type of grass seed does best in your area.
5. Fertilizing And Prepping For Seeding
Before you start sprinkling seed on the bare patches or over seeding your existing lawn make sure to fertilize and aerate the lawn for best results. Applying seed to the unprepared ground won’t yield the best results and you may never be able to cut your new grass because it simply won’t grow.
6. It’s Time To Plant Your Seed
If you’ve tested your soil, corrected its imperfections, prepped the ground for success and it’s the right time to do, so it’s a great time to get started. You can sprinkle the see with your hand, but for best results, it’s a good idea to use an inexpensive spreader from your local hardware store.
7. The Importance Of Regular Watering
Your newly seeded areas won’t grow if they aren’t watered regularly and at the right time of day. It’s important to water your new seed every day and it’s best to water it when the sun is cooler either early in the morning or early in the evening so that the water has time to absorb into the ground without evaporating. Be careful not to overwater the newly seeded areas though, as too much water can cause more harm than good.
8. Understanding The Germination Period Of Your Chosen Grass Seed
If you’ve followed the steps above so far there’s no reason that you shouldn’t have richer and healthier grass this summer. But the question remains, how long do you need to wait to let your new grass grow before cutting. There isn’t one right answer to this question. The germination time for grass seedlings can vary depending on the type of seed you used and the climate you live in. Some seedlings grow quickly in as little as 3 to 5 days, while others may take between 10 days and 4 weeks before you can mow the new grass for the first time. For best results, follow the directions on the package your seeds came in.
9. Waiting For The Proper Mowing Height
Even if you’ve waited the allotted time before cutting for the first time you still have to pay attention to the height of your newly seeded grass. It’s best to wait until the grass is at least 3 to 5 inches before mowing it for the first time.
10. Time Between Cuts
Finally, don’t be in a rush to cut your newly mowed lawn a second time after your first cut. If you usually mow your lawn once or twice a week consider waiting another 10 days before mowing your newly seeded grass a second time. If you follow all of the guidelines above your lawn will be lush and thick all summer long.