Soil Preparation for Sod
- 1. Clear the site of all rocks, stones or other debris that is larger than 1-2 inches in diameter.
- 2. Rough grade the entire area to eliminate drainage problems by sloping the grade away from building foundations and filling low-lying areas.
- 3. Till the existing soil to a minimum depth of at least 2 inches before adding any topsoil or soil amendments.
- 4. Add topsoil to achieve a total depth of 4-6 inches.
Laying Your Quality Sod
- 1. Start at a straight line such as a driveway, wall or walkway.
- 2. Lay out the sod as you would a rug or tiles.
- 3. Make sure all joints are butted tightly together without overlapping or spaces between the strips of sod.
- 4. Stagger the joints in each row like rows of bricks.
- 5. Use a large sharp knife for shaping sod around trees, flower beds or along borders.
- 6. Completely soak the sod with at least 1” of water. Start watering 20 minutes after the first strip is laid.
- 7. Roll or tamp the sod to smooth out small bumps and air pockets. This will assure good contact with the soil.
- Immediate Watering Schedule
- 8. To gauge watering, simply place an empty can about 6 inches away from the sprinkler.
- 9. When there is an inch of water in the can, it is time to move the sprinkler to the next area.
- 10. Reflected heat along buildings dried sod quickly; be sure to water such areas more often.
Second through Fifth Day Watering
It’s very important to water your new lawn at least once per day during the week after installation, to ensure that there is adequate moisture for turf to flourish. During hot and/or windy weather, you may need to check for moisture more than once per day. To determine if additional watering is needed lift a corner of the grass in several places. The soil should be damp, not dripping wet or dusty dry.
Signs of Under Watering
Areas where the grass has wilted, or turned a straw color, have not received enough water. Seeing green grass turn brown almost overnight will get your attention! This is the most obvious symptom of under watering. Sod that has not been watered adequately shows signs of yellowing along the edges of each individual piece first. The roots and crowns of the grass plant are still alive, and in most cases, new leaves will appear in seven to ten days, if immediate action is taken.
Your new living carpet needs mowing 6-7 days after installation. The basic mowing rule is never remove more than 1/3 of the leaf blade during a single mowing. Mow when grass height reaches 3” – 3 ½ “. Set your mower at a cutting height of 2” – 2 ½”. For best appearance, be sure to keep your mower blades sharp.
Your new lawn does not need any fertilizer for at least three weeks.
Measure for your Sod
Multiply the length in feet by the width in feet of the area you are looking to sod. This will give you the total square footage to order. ( one roll is 2’ by 4.5′ or 9 square feet)
How Soon Can I Use the Sod?
For best establishment the sod needs time to properly root to the new soil. Early watering often makes the soil underneath the sod soft and susceptible to ruts. Making deep footprints when the soil is soft won’t hurt the sod, but it will make for an uneven lawn in the future! Therefore, use your new lawn sparingly until good root establishment has taken place, usually 2-3 weeks. Avoid concentrated play activities, dog traffic or similar rough usage until four weeks have passes. There are no restrictions to visually enjoying your new lawn!