Your Overseeding Questions Answered

Your Overseeding Questions AnsweredYou’re wrapping up a summer of enjoying your lawn, but when you pause and look at your fescue yard, you suddenly notice that it’s full of brown or bare patches. This can happen for any number of reasons – unwanted insects, drought, disease, heavy traffic, or compacted soil, just to name a few. In many cases, a process called overseeding can help you whip your lawn back into shape, and it’s one of the many professional lawn care services we provide at Turf Shield.

What is Overseeding?

In a nutshell, overseeding is the practice of spreading more grass seed on top of existing grass. This helps by filling in patches of damaged lawn or simply increasing the density of an overall thinning yard. Overseeding can be done only on “problem areas” or over the entire lawn.

Who Can Benefit from Overseeding?

As we mentioned, overseeding is a great option for people with fescue turf who have dead patches in their lawn or for people with a thinning lawn who want denser grass. Generally, though, overseeding your lawn is only helpful if the damage covers less than 50% of your yard. If more than half of your lawn is dead or damaged, it’s typically best to have the remainder of it killed so that you can start new.

How Can I Get Successful Overseeding Results?

In order to get an even and effective result in your overseeded lawn, it’s best to leave this job up to the professionals. In fact, it’s often not cost-effective to do it yourself anyway because you would need to rent specialized equipment. However, even if you hire a professional, it’s a good idea for you to know the ingredients for successful overseeding, so here are a few tips you should know:

  • Improve the seed-to-soil contact (a necessary part of new grass growth) by including professional lawn aeration in the overseeding process. This allows water, air, and nutrients to more effectively reach the seeds and roots.
  • Get your timing right – overseeding usually works best in late summer or early fall.
  • Before you begin overseeding, find out what caused the damage to your lawn in the first place, be it insects, weeds, diseases, or another problem. This will help you keep your freshly overseeded lawn from having the same issue.
  • In order to reduce competition between your existing grass and the new seeds, cut your current grass to the lowest acceptable height before you overseed. Keep in mind that this will vary based on the type of grass you have, so be cautious about cutting it too short.
  • Practice a very specific lawn care routine for your freshly overseeded yard:
    • Water your grass heavily after it’s overseeded.
    • In the first 10-14 days after overseeding, water grass lightly each day, allowing it to soak into one inch of soil.
    • After these 10-14 days, water your lawn less frequently but with a greater amount of soaking to encourage the roots to grow deeper. Eventually, transition into the recommended watering schedule for your grass.

For homeowners who have lawns full of dead patches and damaged grass, overseeding can actually be a relatively easy way to regain a more lush and enjoyable lawn. With the help of experienced lawn care professionals like Turf Shield, this season is the perfect time to overseed. To find out whether this may be an option for your yard, schedule a consultation with Turf Shield. For more lawn care tips and helpful information, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.