Time to Seed

A more appropriate title would be “Not much time left to seed” if you have a lawn in Pennsylvania, New England, the Midwestern U.S. or Canada.

There are basically two times a year that are best for lawn seeding: Spring and Fall.
For multiple reasons, I explain why Fall is the best choice on this page:
SEPTEMBER IS LAWN MONTH – Work with nature and plant in the Fall
But with human nature being what it is, I learned many years ago that homeowners are “hot to trot” in the Spring, especially when it comes to improving their home lawn. That being the case, time is running out for those living in the northern United States and southern Canada.
With hot summer weather just around the corner, paying attention to a few key factors will increase seeding success:
  • Don’t seed if you are also trying to control weeds at the same time. Most pre-emergent herbicides for crabgrass will also inhibit grass seed growth. If adding topsoil while seeding, here’s more: Seeding along driveways.
  • Pick the right seed. You usually get what you pay for when it comes to seed quality.
  • Make sure you have good seed-to-soil contact. Lawn seedings will fail if grass is trying to grow on top of thatch. In thatched lawns, seeding can be done in concert with core aeration. Go over the lawn at least three times!
  • Moisten freshly seeded areas every morning if it isn’t raining. Quick germination helps ensure faster establishment. More on watering.
  • Continue watering newly established grass into the summer months. In general, water thoroughly once a week if there is less than one-inch of rainfall during the week. Buy a rain gauge, since rainfall can be very localized.
  • Mow grass at the highest possible height without it laying-over. Try a 3-inch height setting. Taller grass = Deeper roots. Keep your lawnmower blade sharp! More: Important facts on lawnmowing.
  • Sod instead of seed? Video: How to Sod a Lawn

More information:

Spring to do List

Draining wet lawn areas with a French drain