Have you spent the entire summer vigilantly watering, mowing, and fertilizing your grass, only to be left with a dull, patchy yard? If so, you’re not alone! This is a common frustration voiced by homeowners. The appearance and health of your grass has the ability to make or break your entire landscaping. A vibrant, lush lawn dramatically enhances the curb appeal of your home. Salvaging a struggling lawn can be tricky business, but there is a solution that doesn’t require you to dig up your existing lawn and start from scratch. Overseeding is an easy and effective way to get a thicker, healthier lawn.
What is overseeding?
Simply put, overseeding is planting new grass seed over top of your existing lawn without tearing up the existing grass. Over time, lawns become lackluster, drained of their vibrance and density. This is what causes your lawn to look dull and bare, despite generous amounts of water and fertilizer. Overseeding is the simplest way to fill in bare spots and add overall grass density, which dramatically increases the health and appearance of your lawn.
Overseeding is an ideal option for homeowners whose lawns are in need of some serious TLC. Turf grass, especially those of older varieties, can become drought ridden and susceptible to diseases, insects, and general wear over time. Oftentimes, water and fertilizer aren’t enough to restore the health and quality of your lawn. Overseeding is an effective way to revitalize your lawn without having to tear up the soil and start from scratch. The benefits of overseeding extend well beyond improving the appearance of your lawn. Overseeding rejuvenates your lawn and reestablishes its health so it can better withstand natural elements, insects, and disease. An added bonus- a healthy lawn doesn’t demand nearly as much water, fertilizer, or pesticides to maintain.
What do I need to consider beforehand?
Before overseeding, you’ll want to analyze what has primarily led to the deterioration of your existing lawn. While there are clear benefits to overseeding with a higher quality grass seed, if you don’t identify problems facing the existing turf, the newly laid seed is likely to suffer from the same problems that caused the decline of your existing grass. Some common problems include poor soil condition or soil compaction, excess thatch, poor drainage, or existing grass varieties not suited for the soil and climate of that particular region. Identifying conditions negatively impacting your lawn can be a challenge for the general homeowner, which is why it’s recommended to call in a professional lawn care company for this step. A thicker, healthier, and more vibrant lawn begins with taking the preventative measures to ensure the newly planted seed is able to grow and thrive.
I’m ready to overseed my lawn! How do I do it?
There are essentially two main methods for overseeding. The best method is to use a mechanical slit-seeder. When overseeding, it is essential to establish excellent contact between seed and soil to maximize germination. A slit-seeder uses sharp blades to effectively cut even slits through the thatch, into the soil, and then deposits seeds directly into the soil. This ensures maximum seed-to-soil contact, aiding in germination and resulting in a thicker, more even lawn. An alternative method that is easier to do yourself is to broadcast seed using a rake and a simple seed spreader. One drawback of broadcast seeding it that the grass seed often gets caught up in the thatch layer or settles unevenly into the soil. Seed that doesn’t settle well into the soil cannot germinate properly, which leads to patchy results. Regardless of which method you choose, it’s important to begin with a well aerated lawn and water generously following planting to optimize results.
Should I hire a professional?
While there are numerous DIY lawn projects homeowners are able to tackle with confidence, overseeding your lawn is likely a time when you’ll want to call in your local lawn professionals for several reasons. First, a professional lawn care company can help thoroughly assess what problems need to be addressed prior to overseeding your lawn. As noted before, if you don’t address the specific issues leading to the deterioration of your existing grass, overseeding could be a waste of time. Determining the best type of grass seed is also a decision best left to lawn care experts who are familiar with what grass varieties grow best in your area. In addition, professional lawn care companies already have the equipment to ensure the job is done right the first time. While there are ways to overseed with more common yard tools you may already own, advanced tools like professional aerators, de-thatchers, and mechanical slit-seeders get the job done much more quickly and effectively. At the end of the day, homeowners agree that working with professionals on this one is worth the investment.
Overseeding can breathe new life into a struggling lawn! If your lawn isn’t looking it’s best this fall – give us a call! We’d love to get your lawn to greener days!