Grass and Wildflower Seed
WHEN TO PLANT GRASS SEED
The best time to plant grass seed depends upon the grass type and the elevation of the site.
- Cool season grasses (bluegrass, ryegrass, fescue) can be planted anytime from March through September
- Warm season grasses (buffalograss, blue grama) should be planted April through July with later seeding not being recommended.
- Higher elevations )above 7000 ft) should avoid using warm season grasses and should instead seed cool season grasses in spring after the last frost when the temperature becomes warmer.
- Avoid planting after first fall frost as young seedlings can easily be killed by freezing weather.
Preparing the soil for planting is the most labor intensive and time consuming step; however, it is one of the most important. A well prepared seedbed is essential for rapid, successful establishment of a lawn.
- Rototill or work the soil to a depth of 4-6 inches and till in the soil amendments to loosen and aerate the soil. Then smooth out surface in preparation for seeding.
- Cast seed evenly over prepared soil and lightly rake area to cover seed roughly ¼ to ½ inches. Lightly pack down soil around seed.
- Seedlings are very susceptible to drying out and should be carefully watered so as to keep soil moist but not soggy. Multiple water applications per day may be necessary. These will hold in water and prevent seed runoff.
- It will be possible several weeks after the first seeding to observe areas where seedlings have not emerged and a second seeding can be applied.
care for new seed
- Avoid traffic over newly seeded areas until grass is established.
- New grass should be mowed when it reaches 3-4 inches tall to encourage spreading and thickening of the grass.
- Maintain regular watering to prevent roots from drying out.
- New lawns are very sensitive to most herbicides;applications should be avoided until 4-6 weeks after planting. Check label on herbicide for more information.
Maintaining a lawn:
- Watering is one of the most important factors in the long-term success of a lawn. Different grass varieties require different amounts of water and each lawn is different. Shady lawns and areas protected from the wind will require less watering.
- Infrequent, deep watering is better than frequent, light watering. However, lawns should not be allowed to become completely dry between waterings. Be careful not to apply water too quickly or heavily as this will cause runoff and damage. It is best to move sprinklers or wait an hour or so and water again.
- The best time to water is late evening or early morning to prevent evaporation.
- Mowing is important to encourage a thick lawn and grass clippings should be allowed to fall back onto the lawn to provide a light mulch and organic matter.
- Nitrogen is the most important nutrient for good color and growth. too much nitrogen can be detrimental and instructions on the product should be closely followed.
- Late summer and fall is the best time to fertilize as opposed to the usual spring fertilizing to prevent excessive shoot growth that can ultimately be damaging to the plant. A late summer nitrogen application has time to be absorbed to help plants resume healthy growth the following spring.
- A fertilizer with iron is beneficial for maintaining a green lawn
things to avoid
- Do not scatter grass seed on unprepared lawn surfaces as this is one of the chief reasons for seedling failure. Do not use pre-emergent herbicides at any time around planting; wait at least one year before using a pre-emergent.
- Over-fertilizing will not result in a better or faster growing law.
- Do not fertilize on a hot day to prevent leaf burn especially if you are using a quick-release variety. Water lawn immediately after fertilizing.
- Do not let grass become too tall as this will slow down the spreading and thickening process.
We source our seed from Southwest Seed Inc., based out of Dolores, CO. Take a peak at some of our waterwise, low maintenance lawn alternatives!