Lawn Care

Watering

 Watering you new lawn is the most critical factor in determining whether the sod survives or perishes.  It is important to water immediately upon installation as the sod is in shock from being harvested from its known environment and the roots are going to be looking for moisture.  The first watering needs to saturate through the sod into the root structure.  After that it is important to just keep the sod moist as then the roots will penetrate into the soil establishing a connection to nutrients and moisture.  Your sod will tell you when its looking for water as it will first turn grey, then it will ultimately turn brown and perish, Keep in mind key factors which will dry your sod out faster are sun and wind.  Your watering schedule should be adjusted accordingly.  Also, remember that sandy soil will take more water then a clay base soil in order to keep your sod healthy both initially and long term 

Mowing

 Avoid mowing your new lawn for the first time until your sod is fully rooted.  You can verify this by randomly grabbing a section and trying to pull up on it.  It should take roughly 7 - 10 days to fully root, depending on the weather conditions.  When you do cut your lawn for the first time you should raise your mowing deck as high as it can go as your sod continues to grow during the rooting period and will be fairly long.  A good rule of thumb is to never cut more than 1/3 of the length of grass off at any time as this can damage or kill your lawn.  The higher you keep your lawn in general will provide the most benefits.  We recommend 3 - 3 1/2 Inches.  This will create more photosynthesis (which provides more food,) more shade (cooler lawn - less moisture loss,) less weeds, deeper stronger roots, and ultimately the grass will grow more slowly. 

Fertilizing

  Fertilizing supplies nutrients to your lawn during the growing season.  Spring, Summer and Fall Applications are strongly advised.  Note: the fertilizer that you purchase are made up of 3 main components: Nitrogen - which provides leaf and shoot growth and gives that deep green colour.  Phosphorous - establishes seedlings and root growth, and Potassium - which helps against wear from hot and cold weather.  Different seasons of the year require different compositions of these 3 components to optimize lawn feeding and protection.  Remember fertilizing helps establish new lawns and helps maintain established lawns, which in turn helps deter weeds and pests 

Lawn Care Program

 Adopting a lawn care program is a great idea to ensure your lawn gets what it needs at the right times.  You can either manage this yourself or trust it to the lawn care professionals.  Since weeds are ultimately inevitable it is required to spray your lawn periodically to help prevent weeds and pests.  Timing is most critical when spraying your lawn to fight against weeds and pests as you want to kill or deter them when they are most vulnerable.  For example weeds when they are small and young, Pests when they lay their eggs to reproduce 

Lawn Rolling

  Lawn rolling which is often called ground compaction is a key component to maintain a level tight lawn.  Often seen performed in the spring to even out the imperfections caused from the frost in the winter period.  It is best performed after a good rain to uniformly compact and level your lawn. Ground compaction or rolling helps maintain moisture and makes it harder for underground critters, like moles to pop up through your lawn.  

Core Aeration

 Core Aeration is the removal of small cores of soil to allow air, moisture and fertilizer down into the root structure area of your lawn. The aeration process pulls approximately 1 - 2 Inch plugs of soil and lays them on top of your lawn surface where they will break down.  Soil surrounding the open holes will eventually collapse filling them in.  This is often seen being done in the fall time as its important to get the winter fertilizer deep into the soil to help feed and protect your lawn over the winter. 

FAQ

Is a sod lawn less work than a seeded lawn?

 Yes, a nursery sod lawn is less work than a seeded lawn since you are starting with a healthy mature lawn which just needs to be maintained.  Where as a seeded lawn requires a lot more attention in terms of water and fertilizer to try to get it to the same state.  after your lawn sod is installed just follow the steps in the lawn care section and you will be fine. 

When can I install a sod lawn?

 You can install a sod lawn any time of year as long as the ground can be tilled.  Basically as long as the ground isn't too wet and before and after the winter frost.  The only other thing you will need is access to water for your lawn.  The weather conditions at the time of install will determine how much water and care your new sod lawn will require. 

Where can I use sod?

 Kentucky Bluegrass sod can be installed anywhere on your property where it will get a period of sun throughout the day.  Kentucky Bluegrass sod requires sun to survive.  As long as there is some sun throughout the day, it will be fine.  If there are areas which are full shade all day, then I recommend a shade grass seed for those areas. 

Should I sod or seed?

 Sod is a result of nurtured care in the field for approximately 2 years.  Continuous mowing, fertilizing, weed control, and watering provides you with the lush green lawn that instantly increases the value of your property.  Sod will require about 1/2 the amount of water than seed.  The value of sod is in the end result. 

Is sodding more expensive than seeding?

 Yes Sod is more expensive than seed.  A big bag of seed will cost you less than half the cost of a skid of sod.  However sod is an instant quality mature product where as seed requires a more ongoing investment of time and money typically over a 1 - 2 year peiod for water, re-seeding, and fertilizing.  I have seen seeding actually end up costing more than sod, and ending up with an inferior result.

Is there a minimum sod order?

 No, There is no job too big or too small for Grasscape.  Grasscape prices cost per square foot and you are only charged based on final area of sod installed. 

What needs to be done to prepare the soil for sod?

 The area needs to be free of debris (rocks, weeds, etc.)  It also should be tilled which will kill any existing weed roots preventing them from coming up through the sod.  The area should also be levelled and some what compacted making the surface ready for sod.  This is also assuming you have a good couple inches of topsoil base.  Grasscape would be happy to do this for you, or you can prepare the area yourself. 

How much do I need to water my newly sodded lawn?

 There is no exact quantity or time of watering which is required.  Its based on the weather conditions during the first 2 weeks until it is established.  The first watering is the most important and should occur immediately after installation.  This watering should saturate through the sod into the root structure.  after this key watering it will be a matter of just keeping the sod moist, again depending on temperature, sun, wind, etc.  To keep the sod moist it will require more frequent watering with less duration.  The appearance of the sod will guide you.  When it looks grey, it is looking for water.  If it doesn't get the water it will turn brown, then eventually perish. 

When do I begin mowing my new lawn, and how often?

 You should not mow your lawn for the first time until it is fully rooted.  You can verify this by trying to pull up on an area of sod.  Generally it takes 7 - 10 days to fully root, depending on the weather conditions.  When you do cut your lawn for the first time make sure your mowing deck is set a high as possible as you never want to cut more than 1/3 of the length of your grass at any time.  It may take a couple of cuts to get to your desired height.  Keep your cutting blade sharp and aim for an optimum grass height of 3 to 3 1/2 Inches.  

The area I wish to sod has a lot of weeds?

 The weeds need to be killed and removed before you install your sod lawn for optimal results.  See Grasscape service section for details and illustration as we would be happy to take care of this for you.  

Can I just sod dead areas or do I have to do my whole lawn?

 Yes, you can just sod the dead areas without disturbing the rest of your lawn.  The dead areas would have to be prepared the same by removing all debris and dead grass.  Your lawn will appear different for a while since it would be hosting newly sodded areas but would blend in to your existing lawn over time.   

Will sod grow on sand or clay?

 Yes, sod will grow on sand or clay.  If sod is installed on sand then it will require more water than if installed on clay to keep your lawn healthy.  Both sand and clay lack the essential nutrients required to properly feed your sod to establish a strong root system.  This is why its recommended to have a good minimum 2 inch base of top soil on top of the sand or clay. 

How do I maintain my newly sodded lawn?

 Your newly sodded lawn is an investment in your property and requires the proper attention.  Aside from the basics of watering and mowing as discussed above, you should also establish a weed and feed program consisting of fertilizing and weed control applications.  You can either do this yourself or trust the professionals. 

With whom do I trust my sodding requirements?