Alan Titchmarsh on how to prepare lawn for seeding and turfing
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Lawns can often get damaged throughout the winter months, leaving you with maintenance to keep up with when the summer comes out. Overseeding your garden, also known as reseeding, will repair damaged areas, giving you the luscious green grass you’ve always dreamed of and, ultimately, bring your lawn back to life. To get the best results from overseeing, you should be aiming for when temperatures are mild yet still bring plenty of rainy days – an ideal time is spring or autumn.
Preparing to overseed
Overseeding preparation enables you to repair any damage to your lawn and gives you a fresh canvas to work with.
To prepare your overseeding operation:
- Weed the lawn either by hand, or using a weed killer
- Remove any boulders, stones and any other obstacles
- Scarify the lawn to remove moss and loosen the soil
- Fertilise the soil with a quick release fertiliser
One suggestion is to begin preparing one or two weeks before you want to reseed.
However, if this isn’t possible, you can still prepare and reseed in a single day with great results.
Be aware you’ll need to weed the grass by hand as using weed killer and sowing new seed on the same day is a bad day, as the new growth could be damaged.
Using a quick-release fertiliser will give your lawn the quick boost it needs to get ready for reseeding, essentially enabling it to grow and fill out more quickly.
The six foolproof steps to reseeding
The Grass People recommend you start by mowing your grass to approximately 25mm in length.
Moisten the soil with enough water to penetrate deep beneath the surface.
Next, sprinkle the seed onto the grass evenly, applying more in patchy or thinner areas.
The seed should be applied at a rate of 35g per square metre as a standard amount, however, in patchy areas you can go for 50g per square metre.
The next step is to water your lawn after reseeding, at this point watering in little quantities and often is best recommended.
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While this step is optional, a great finishing touch to your lawn is to roll it out.
After you’ve oversewed, continue to mow the grass regularly with care and attention in order to achieve optimum health.
You can even water your lawn every day after reseeding until the new grass shows its face, particularly if the weather is experiencing a dry spell.
However, be very careful not to drown the seed with overwatering, especially in the initial stage of overseeding.
Pay attention to the first cut after overseeding, your lawn is still getting established and will need extra love and care initially.
To reiterate, the six steps to overseeding are:
- Mow the grass to approximately 25mm
- Moisten the soil
- Sprinkle the seed
- Water your lawn after reseeding
- Roll the lawn (optional)
- Mow the grass regularly
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