How to Care for Your Newly Installed Sod in St. Louis

Table of Contents

Installing sod is a significant investment in your St. Louis property. To ensure your new lawn thrives, proper care and maintenance are crucial. Here’s a comprehensive guide to nurturing your newly installed sod:

Watering:

Frequency: Water your sod deeply and frequently for the first 2-4 weeks, aiming for daily watering in hot weather. As the roots establish, gradually reduce the frequency to 2-3 times per week.

 

Depth: Water thoroughly, soaking the soil to a depth of 4-6 inches, encouraging deep root growth.

 

Time: Early morning or evening watering is ideal to minimize water evaporation.

Mowing:

Timing: Wait until the grass blades reach a height of 4-5 inches before mowing.

 

Height: Never remove more than 1/3 of the grass blade length during each mowing to avoid stressing the new sod.

 

Sharpness: Use a sharp mower blade to ensure a clean cut and prevent damage to the grass.

Fertilizing:

Timing: Avoid fertilizing in the first 4-6 weeks after installation.

 

Type: Choose a starter fertilizer formulated for new lawns.

 

Application: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for application rates and timing.

Weed Control:

Prevention: Maintaining a healthy, thick lawn is the best defense against weeds.

 

Spot treatment: For hand-removal of scattered weeds, use a garden knife or pull the weeds carefully without disturbing the sod.

 

Post-emergent herbicides: Consider using a selective post-emergent herbicide for widespread weed control, but consult a professional for guidance.

Additional Tips:

Avoid excessive foot traffic: Limit walking and playing on the new sod for the first few weeks to allow the roots to establish.

Aerate the soil: Aerating compacted soil improves water and air penetration, promoting root growth.

Control pests and diseases: Monitor for signs of pests and diseases, and address them promptly with appropriate treatments.

Overseeding: Consider overseeding bare patches with the same type of sod or a compatible grass seed mixture.

By following these care guidelines and providing your sod with the necessary attention, you can establish a lush, healthy lawn that will enhance your St. Louis property for years to come.

Here are some additional resources you may find helpful:

University of Missouri Extension: https://extension.missouri.edu/

National Sod Growers Association: https://turfgrasssod.org/

St. Louis County Master Gardeners: https://stlmg.org/


Remember, the specific care needs of your sod may vary depending on the type of grass, weather conditions, and your individual property. Consulting with a professional landscaper or lawn care service can provide personalized advice and ensure the long-term health and beauty of your St. Louis lawn.”

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