New Sod? Here’s What to Know
Are you basking in the lush green landscape of your lawn after installing sod? You should be! Sod is a great way to establish a lawn. However, just because you’ve completed the installation process (or had a professional such as Urban Eden Landscaping take care of it for you), that doesn’t mean that your work is over. Here are a few things to pay attention to when it comes to basic lawn care and yard maintenance with your new sod.
Before Lawn Installation: Check the Soil
In most cases, the soil needs preparation before the installation of sod. The most effective method of preparing the soil for sod installation is to hire a professional to conduct a soil test. This way, homeowners know exactly how much fertilizer and lime to apply. For homeowners who aren’t familiar with aerating their soil and how to apply fertilizer, they can hire a professional to do all of the aeration and fertilizing before installing the sod.
Installation Time: Choose Wisely
While sod can be rolled out and installed nearly any time of the year, there are certain times of the year in which the sod will develop roots easier than others. For example, autumn is likely the best time for most homeowners to install sod. The autumn is a good time of year because the soil is still warm enough to promote root growth yet the cool air puts less stress on the roots in order for them to keep the grass supplied with water. While it’s possible to start your lawn now in the mid-summer, you will likely have to water it extensively. Frequent watering is essential to the sod’s health, especially if it’s installed in the summer.
When Does Sod Start to Root?
Sod develops both shallow and deep root systems as it grows.
When Does Sod Develop Shallow Roots?
Your new sod should start to develop a shallow root system in the first two weeks. One of the most important things to remember about new sod is that the short roots should never dry out. The first week is the most critical (longer in the summer) when it comes to watering your new sod. If the new sod dries out at any point in the first couple of weeks, the health of your new lawn can be severely compromised.
When Does Sod Develop Deep Roots?
It can take up to six weeks for the sod to develop a deep root system. As the sod develops its shallow root system and moves on to develop a deeper root system, it’s critical to increase the amount of time between waterings to encourage roots to grow deeper in search of moisture without stressing the lawn. At this point, watering the lawn should take a longer amount of time since the amount of watering should decrease.
When Can I Mow My Lawn after Sod Installation?
In most cases, your new lawn should be safe to mow about two weeks after installation. However, homeowners must ensure that the sod has developed its shallow root system before mowing the grass. Do not mow any more than one-third of the length of the grass.
Your New Lawn: Care for the First Year
After the first six weeks, homeowners should continue to gradually increase the length of time between waterings. This process will help the lawn continue to develop its deep root system that can reach moisture and nutrients needed for long-term health and growth.
The 5 Most Common Lawn Care Mistakes Homeowners Make
Taking care of the lawn is easy when you know what not to do. Avoid these common mistakes homeowners make:
1. Watering the Grass Too Frequently
As we’ve mentioned, watering sod too frequently can result in the lawn failing to establish a deep root system. Make sure to gradually increase the time between waterings to promote healthy root growth.
2. Mowing the Lawn Too Short
Another common mistake homeowners make when taking care of their lawn is mowing the grass too short. When you cut your grass too short, you deprive your lawn of photosynthesizing surface area. Cutting the grass too short can starve your lawn. Make sure to only remove 1/3 of the length of the grass.
3. Watering the Lawn at the Wrong Time
Water your lawn in the early morning hours. Watering your lawn during the afternoon can cause a lot of moisture to be lost to evaporation and wind. Additionally, watering your lawn in the evening may promote mold growth. Watering in the early morning allows the grass to dry out over the course of the day, preventing harmful diseases and insects from taking hold.
4. Fertilizing the Lawn Too Much
Another common mistake homeowners make when it comes to their lawn is overfertilizing it. Always apply fertilizer according to the manufacturer’s recommendations. Too much fertilizer can burn your grass and turn it brown.
5. Leaving Things Out on the Lawn
Make sure to clear the lawn every evening. Leaving things out like gardening tools, pools, and other items can cause the soil to compact which can affect the grass’s health. Not only will your yard look more organized at the end of the day, but your lawn will thank you!
How Can Urban Eden Landscaping Help You?
No matter what your landscaping needs, Urban Eden Landscaping is your one-stop shop for all of your lawn maintenance and landscaping services in Vancouver, Washington. We offer professional lawn care that includes lawn edges, landscape creation, weed control, and other routine landscaping services. Instead of spending all of your time on your landscaping project, hire Urban Eden Landscaping for your next yard project! Call today for an estimate!