The idea of laying sod to start a new lawn or repair an old lawn seems like a simple solution. Sure, you have to spend a little more, but who cares? You get an instant lawn, and that’s what makes sod amazing. However, the truth about amateur sod jobs is dismal. There are things you must do to avoid killing your new sod, and unless you talk to a professional or have some good research capabilities, you may miss some tips and tricks that allow for success.
5 Tips and Tricks for Laying Sod
1. Avoid decomposition
You must remove any and all vegetation before laying sod. This means you have to weed, remove old grass, or excavate prior to laying your beautiful turf. The reason for this is not anal retentiveness. Vegetation under sod is detrimental to the future of your lawn. No, it’s not likely to poke through and cause weeds in your yard. Instead, it will decompose. This will heat up the ground, and it will burn your grass. The only thing worse than weeds is dead grass.
2. Avoid over-watering
Sod was not meant to be flooded. You can find out if you are watering your sod too much by pulling up a little piece of it. If it is muddy underneath, there’s too much water. Instead, the soil underneath the sod should be slightly moist.
3. Check progress
You can also eyeball the progress of your sod establishment. If it is taking root nicely, when you pull up a small piece of sod, you’ll see white roots trying to reach down to the subsoil. This is great! It means your sod is trying to take hold.
4. Stagger sod pieces
People describe the pattern in which one should lay sod like the pattern one uses to lay brick. It should be staggered, so channels don’t form that will cause water to wash away nutrients and soil from the sod base.
5. Don’t mow too soon
You should mow once you sod gets about 3.5 to 4 inches high. Sod is in a vulnerable state when it is first put down, but you know it’s doing well when it starts to grow. Until then, try to keep off of it and let it survive its transplantation.
Instant lawns require know-how
The truth is, you won’t have an instant lawn if you don’t do it correctly. A lawn that is not properly prepped and maintained will result in dead patches of sod and replants. If you want to do it yourself, that’s awesome. But make sure you know what you are doing.
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