Over time, your lawn will degrade and slowly start to break down. It can be frustrating when you look at your failing lawn and compare it with your neighbor’s lush, green, and healthy yard. If your lawn is starting to be covered in weeds, then it might be time to reseed your lawn.
What Is Reseeding?
Reseeding is the process of tearing up your lawn to remove weeds, and replanting it with new grass seed. You will need to reseed a lawn if it becomes overgrown with weeds. Reseeding differs from overseeding, which can fill in a lawn that is starting to have thin, brown patches. When you reseed, you will be starting over with your lawn, and planting new seeds after you remove the weeds and prep the soil.
How To Reseed Your Lawn
- Remove Weeds
- Prep the Soil
- Spread the Grass Seed
- Apply Fertilizer
- Water Your Lawn
- Maintain the Yard
1. Remove Weeds
The very first thing to do is get rid of all existing weeds on your lawn. The most straightforward way to do this is to use a weed killer such as Roundup or something similar. If you do use weedkillers, make sure you wear proper skin and eye protection.
Another way to kill the weeds is to go nuclear and get rid of your entire lawn. You can use sunlight and water to do this. Mow down the grass as low as you can and soak it thoroughly with a sprinkler. Next, place plastic sheeting over the entire law, making sure to cover the edges. Weigh down the sheeting with bricks, ensuring there are no holes. When the sun comes out, it will heat the water and destroy any leftover grass. Then you essentially have a blank slate to start from.
2. Prep the Soil
Next, you must prepare the soil for reseeding. Remove any large objects and take a rake to the soil to overturn it and break up large clumps of dirt. This process aims to aerate the soil by exposing it to oxygen and cycling the nutrients in the ground. Raking the ground also opens up the soil so new seeds can implant and germinate.
Once you have adequately broken up clumps and softened the dirt, make sure that the top ¼” layer is loosened. At this point, you can add some soil nutrients to add essential materials to the soil.
3. Spread the Grass Seed
After the weeds have been removed and the soil aerated, it’s time to actually spread the new seed. It would be best if you used a seed spreader to place the new grass. If you do not already have one, then you can find one at your local home improvement store. Make sure that you match the spreading apparatus with the proper seed dispersion instructions and the proper seed size. Different types of seed need different coverage.
One tip we have for reseeding your lawn is to avoid windy days. Seeding on a windy day is a surefire way to waste your seed and not cover your lawn uniformly. You should try to spread seed on a non-windy day.
4. Apply Fertilizer
Once you have laid down the seed, the next thing you should do is apply fertilizer. You can buy several different kinds of fertilizer, but the main thing is that it has adequate levels of nitrogen and potassium. Fertilizing your seed directly after laying it down will help it take roots quicker and germinate.
Also, the faster your seeds take root, the less likely they are to be blown by the wind or damaged by heat. Also, make sure you stay off the lawn. If you have family or pets, you should probably fence off the lawn for the time being, so the seeding does not get messed up.
5. Water Your Lawn
Once the fertilizer has been laid down, you need to water the lawn. Initially, you should water at least twice a day and keep the soil moist and damp. After about 2 weeks, you can reduce watering to once every few days.
It is imperative that you do not overwater your lawn. Overwatering your lawn runs the risk of upturning loose soil and preventing the seeds from taking hold and germinating. Too much water can also kill the seeds before they have time to take root.
6. Maintain the Yard
After about 4 weeks, your lawn should be in a condition to continue your regular maintenance. It is important that you do not mow your lawn before this point. Mowing your yard too early can uproot the new grass and ruin all your hard work. You should also regularly apply fertilizer to your new lawn every 6 to 8 weeks.
Now, sit back, relax, and enjoy your beautiful, lush new lawn! You deserve it!
When Should You Reseed Your Lawn?
The best time to reseed your lawn depends on the specific type of grass you have and the climate where you live. For example, if you live in the Northeast, then you should probably use cool-season grass and reseed during the fall, ideally 2 months before the first frost.
Alternatively, if you live in the Southwest, you will want warm-season grass, and reseeding is best done in the late winter and early spring. Despite what you might think, reseeding during the hottest part of the year with the most sunlight is generally not a good idea. The problem is that high temperatures and lots of sunlight can wilt your lawn before the new grass has time to take hold.
More generally, the amount of sunlight a particular patch receives should determine seed selection. In general, seed mixtures contain a wide variety of different types with different characteristics. This allows seed mixtures to handle a range of temperatures and soil conditions.
Reseeding a Lawn Bottom Line
If you've noticed that your yard is becoming overgrown with weeds, it's probably time to consider reseeding your lawn. It takes a bit of effort to reseed, as it involves ripping out the weeds and planting a new lawn over the old one. However, fully replanting new grass seed is well worth it if you want a beautiful lawn without weeds.