The path to a green lawn is fraught with choices.  Should I seed or sod my lawn?  Let’s compare the options.

Firstly, establishing a thick, healthy turf surface from seed is dependent on a number of factors.  Before making an investment, ask yourself where you want this turf to grow.  Select grass species that are locally adapted to your climate and to your site, be it shady or full sun. Nowadays, huge extensive selections of grass species exist that can work under many environmental constraints.  Salt tolerance, low mow varieties can also be part of your seed selection.

The nature of applying seed by hand broadcasting or mechanical means lends itself to seeds coming into contact quickly with the soil environment.  Seeds will germinate quickly especially if water is part of your equation.  Over seeding is another option especially if for some reason you expect low germination rates. Ideally, establishing a lawn by seed means being smart about your soil, site and plant species.

Remember too plants take time to grow.  You want have instant green and during establishment you will have to watch out for unwanted species showing up.

An excellent method to try is establishing your lawn seed with probiotics. Probiotics are natural alternatives to synthetic chemicals and can be applied at the same time as your grass seed.  Probiotics also accelerate germination and establishment and indirectly ward off disease.  Fast, efficient establishment and uptake of water and nutrients are key to a thick turf surface throughout the growing season.

Now let’s look at the sod option.

Usually sod production occurs at a grower’s site with turf being harvested by machine after 1-2 years.  The harvesting process sheers the root system from the soil.  This is something to take into consideration.

Applying sod to an area, whatever the size, means the turf plants will need to quickly re-establish root systems to anchor the turf in place.  This might not be a good choice if you’re thinking about covering a sloped area.

Another thing to keep in mind that sod brings with it microorganisms and insect pests with them to your new lawn.  Watering is also key to encourage the roots to re-grow.  Whatever your choice for creating a new lawn, remember to ask questions and look at what species comprise your turf and ensure the match between plant and site is a good one.

There is much to learn about grass, sod, seed, soil and the environment. However, apply this knowledge and you can expect thick and healthy turf surface.

What’s your preference for creating a new green space?

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