Common Mistakes When Using Lawn Grass Seed – Must Read

mistakes lawn grass seed

Anyone with a lawn knows that proper care and maintenance of your grass will help you enjoy a healthier and more beautiful lawn. Lawn grass seed is a great way to help your lawn take off and have a noticeably greener appearance. 

Lawn grass seed use will be one of the most important aspects of your lawn. But it’s going to be equally vital that you understand how to use the right quality lawn grass seed. 

Many people have been wondering what the best lawn grass seed is. With the suitable lawn, you’ll have healthy grass, but with the wrong lawn grass seed, you’ll have a patch of bare brown dirt as your only grass. 

This blog will look at some of the most common mistakes when using lawn grass seed.

7 Common Mistakes When Using Lawn Grass Seed

  • Choosing Inappropriate Seed for the Climate

One of the most common mistakes is selecting the wrong seed; you should choose a suitable seed for your application.

Choose a premium, hard-wearing grass seed mix that can withstand heavy foot traffic if you want a tough lawn.

Perhaps the lawn is in an area where you have to walk over to get from one part of the garden to another, or you have children and dogs that cause a lot of foot traffic, don’t expect to have an ornamental lawn that requires less foot traffic and possibly other forms of lawn maintenance.

There are other grass seeds for clay soils, such as Clay King, and grass mixtures for shady locations.

Choose a seed type that is appropriate for your application!

Another essential factor to think about is the shade. By shady, we mean things like big trees that create a canopy, structures, or fences that keep areas of the soil or grass from getting much light throughout the day.

  • Bad Timing of Putting the Seed Down

Another common mistake when sowing a lawn with grass seed is applying the seed at an inopportune time.

Most people believe that you can throw seed down any time of year, and it will develop and yield good quality high levels of germination.

As a general rule, the optimum times to grow grass from seed are in the spring and fall.

This is because you have a more steady higher temperature range over 10 degrees soil temperature and a better chance of receiving consistent hydration.

As a result, plan your lawn overseeding or new grass project for the spring or autumn.

Keep an eye out for when the soil temperature rises above 10 degrees or when your seed supplier recommends it.

Certain specific seeds can sprout in the winter, such as this Cold Start grass seed, which can start growing at temperatures as low as five degrees.

If you plan to plant during the winter, make sure you choose the correct grass kind and keep it free of frost.

  • Planting Grass Seed Too Deep

Planting too deep is one of the most common mistakes when using lawn grass seed. 

People sometimes bury or rake in grass seed too deeply after spreading it, assuming the seeds need to be sown the same way as garden vegetables.

Remember that lawn grass seeds can be lightly brushed into the soil or placed on the surface. Seeds buried deeper than the length of the seed will have a difficult time germinating.

When it comes to grass seed, you should aim for the top quarter-inch of the soil bed.

If you’re starting with a new lawn, you’ll probably have to till the soil or add new soil material.

After that, bury the seed in the top layer of the surface for less than a quarter of an inch.

Avoid burying the seed too deeply in the soil bed since it will struggle to germinate, and it will most likely rot or not germinate, wasting your time and money.

If you’re overseeding, cut the grass on the lowest setting, remove any debris or thatch, and then plant the seed.

Topdressing will boost germination rates, assist in leveling your lawn, limit bird take, and keep moisture locked in during the germination phase.

  • Applying Mulch Too Thick

Another germination issue develops when people cover the sown area with too much mulch.

While mulch might be useful, too much of it will suffocate the new seedlings. Only apply mulch at the prescribed rate for optimal results. If a straw is used, one 80 lb. It is sufficient to have one bale every 1000 square feet. 

Also, make sure the straw you’re using is from a reputable supplier. Better better, only use weed-free straw that has been verified. The quickest way to introduce weeds to a fresh lawn is to use straw mulch contaminated with weed seeds.

  • Not Aerating the Soil 

Before sowing your grass, don’t forget to aerate the soil.

Aerating the soil provides little openings for the seeds to enter. The seeds will sit on top of the soil if you don’t aerate your lawn.

The superficial seeds will be blown away or eaten by animals over time, failing to produce healthy new grass for your lawn.

However, by aerating your grass, the seeds will be able to burrow deeper into the soil, where they will be naturally shielded from the wind and animals.

  • Strictly Relying on Rain For Seed Hydration

Rain isn’t always reliable for hydrating grass seedlings.

You’ll need to put up a sprinkler if there’s no rain in the forecast. The seeds will not sprout into grass if they are not watered. That being said, don’t use too much water.

For most types of grass seed, roughly 10 minutes of soaking should be sufficient.

  • Neglecting After Care

You don’t want to rake the lawn until it’s established after the seed has been sown. You could pull up the young seedlings and damage the root zone. 

On the other hand, failing to remove the leaves could be just as dangerous as suffocating the seedlings. Given that the roots of a grass plant can hold up to 90% of its weight, we want to ensure that the foundation is solid.

What happens if you put too much grass seed down?

Reducing the amount of Seed Germination

The problem that can arise from using too much grass seed is reducing the rate at which your seeds germinate.

When you sow grass seeds, they will compete for access to your soil to germinate. When overseeding happens, certain plants may acquire access to the soil fast, while others may never reach it at all. This might cause germination issues since seeds that never get to the soil will never germinate, and those that do will be influenced by those who don’t.

Slower growth rates slowed establishment, and slow-growing grass is the result.

The average germination time for grass seeds is one to three weeks. However, germination for overseeding seeds can extend this much further.

Increased Competition Between Seeds

When you plant too much grass seed, you accidentally create competition among your seeds for all of the resources they require to germinate and flourish, not just access to your soil.

All plants, including grass, need space in your soil to grow their roots. Spreading too much grass seed, on the other hand, encourages root competition among seedlings as they try to grow. Some seeds may push through the soil rapidly, absorbing their share of moisture and nutrients, while others fail.

As a result, there is an uneven appearance to the grass and competition among the seeds that remain.

Unhealthy Grass Structure

The poor physical structure of the grass that survives is one of the negative consequences of greater competition between your seedlings.

This arises due to a scarcity of necessary resources, as numerous seeds compete for what they need to establish themselves. Because many seeds do not survive and become established, those that do develop a thin form that is readily crushed by footfall or extreme weather conditions.

Final Thoughts

In conclusion, there are a few things to remember when planting lawn grass seed. Make sure to choose the right type of seed for your climate and soil, sow the seed at the correct depth, and water regularly until the seedlings have taken root. With a little bit of care and attention, you can create a lush and beautiful lawn using only grass seed! 

Following these simple tips should help you avoid common mistakes and have a lush green lawn in no time!

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