Most homeowners plant grass seed once and wonder why their lawn gets thinner and weedier every year. That’s because even with proper fertilization, turf grass reproduction naturally slows down over the years and lawns simply need more seeds in order to stay thick and weed-free.
But it’s easy and gets your lawn thick again and a thick lawn, if mowed to a height of 3 inches, is mostly weed-free. The other benefit of over-seeding is that the new seed you’ll use may be more disease-resistant and drought-tolerant than the seed originally used to create your lawn.
Are you sure your lawn needs it? Here’s a tip: Spread the grass blades and if you can see the soil, it’s too thin and needs reseeding.
The best time is the same as for planting new cool-season lawns: August 20 to October 15.
- Mow at the lowest possible setting, with a grass-catcher if you have one.
- Rake the area with a hard rake, leaving no debris. This is important to provide direct contact between seed and soil.
- This is a good time to do the recommended yearly addition of organic matter to your lawn by spreading a 1/4- to 1/2-inch layer of compost (we recommend Leafgro) before seeding.
- Spread seed – the same amount as for a brand new lawn.
- Keep the seeds moist for 14 days, just as you would a new lawn. That means watering one to three times a day, depending on whether is hot and dry or cloudy and cool. Missing a day or two of watering can mean wasting all that grass seed and the effort expended to plant it.
- Mow when the old grass reaches 3 inches.