Hints and Suggestions for Getting Your New Sod Established

YOU NEED TO GET THE SOD ON THE GROUND AS SOON AS POSSIBLE AND START PUTTING WATER ON IT.

Soil Preparation: Your soil needs to be clean (i.e. no plant material or trash on the surface). The reason: you need good root to soil contact and debris creates air pockets. The soil should not be compacted. Compaction prevents root penetration of the grass and will lead to weak and “poor doing” turf. As a general rule, rototilling and a light packing will prep your soil for new sod.

Sod Laying: SOD IS A PERISHABLE PRODUCT and because of this, we wait as long as possible to reach the optimum cutting conditions for the sod. YOU NEED TO GET THE SOD ON THE GROUND AS SOON AS POSSIBLE AND START PUTTING WATER ON IT. With the right conditions, (high heat and high grass humidity) sod will last less than 24 hours on a pallet.

The first time you water, you need to try to get the water to puddle if at all possible (some soils will not allow this), but as a general rule of thumb 1.5 to 2 inches of water will get the job done. What you accomplish when watering like this is removing all of the air pockets and establish root to soil contact.

After the initial heavy watering, you need to keep the soil wet, but not so wet you can’t use your new lawn. It will need to be watered daily (one or more times, depending on weather conditions) until the new roots become established. When you try to pull up a corner of sod, and can’t, your sod is ready to have the water weaned off of it. Reduce the number of times watered gradually until you reach the point where you are putting on the recommended rate (recommendations vary by variety of grass and weather conditions). MAKE SURE YOU DO NOT LET YOUR GRASS DEHYDRATE BEFORE ESTABLISHMENT. If it does dehydrate, the “seams” will spread apart and no amount of water will close them up!

Mow your lawn whenever it needs it. Follow recommended practices for your variety of grass and weather conditions.

Fertilizer: We recommend you use soil sample analysis to determine the soil nutrients needed for a healthy lawn.

Your County Extension Agent is able to make specific recommendations concerning your lawn watering, fertilizer needs and any site specific needs.

If you have any questions or need help, don’t hesitate to call us.

The toll free number is 866-554-TURF (8873)