What to know about reseeding or replanting your lawn

Published 1:30 pm Monday, April 29, 2024

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Spring marks the return of flowering plants and warm weather. And homeowners know that spring also ushers in the return of home renovation season.
Homeowners undoubtedly have an extensive list of projects on their to-do list this spring, and that may include helping their lawns and gardens recover after a long winter. Unpredictable weather, which can include drought, excessive rainfall, and everything in between, can take its toll on a lawn. In certain instances, the best solution may be planting new grass. However, homeowners can consider these tips before beginning to eseed or replant their lawns.
• Scarify the lawn. Scarifying a lawn can help to create a clean slate, but the timing must be right. Various lawn and garden experts recommend scarifying in spring or early autumn, including those at BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine. But don’t jump the gun when scarifying in spring by scarifying before the lawn has started to grow after a dormant winter. Scarify when the soil is wet, and the grass is again actively growing. Scarfiying can remove any lingering weeds from last season and also pull up any moss that might have taken hold over the winter. Freshly planted seeds are better positioned to thrive without weeds and moss to contend with.
• Work with a landscaping professional. Homeowners with manageable lawns can likely scarify their lawns with a relatively inexpensive plug-in scarifier. However, scarifying can be a strenuous physical activity, particularly for homeowners with large lawns. In such instances, homeowners can benefit from working with a qualified landscaping professional. Such a professional can scarify the lawn and reseed or replant new grass. The latter task is not so simple, as the lawn care experts at Scotts® note that choosing the correct seed is vital to reseeding or replanting a lawn. Selecting a seed may sound simple, but it’s a potentially complex decision that requires knowledge of the existing grass, including when to plant it. Certain grasses are best planted in spring or early fall, while others are best planted in summer. A qualified landscaping professional can identify the existing grass and plan the seeding or planting around this important detail.
• Prepare to water the lawn. Watering is vital to freshly planted grass seed’s long-term success and health. Scotts® urges homeowners to keep the top inch of soil consistently moist but not soggy. That requires a daily commitment, and setting a multi-function hose nozzle or sprinkler to the mist setting once per day or more if it’s hot outside can increase the chances grass will grow in thick and strong. Scotts® recommends keeping the top two inches of the soil moist until the new grass reaches a mowing height of roughly three inches. Once that benchmark has been reached, watering frequency can be cut back to about twice per week, but now the soil should be deeply soaked instead of misted. The soaking will help roots grow deep into the soil.