This quickly kills the already existing grass in much the same way that a brick left on a lawn kills the grass beneath it. Explanation: “All sod must make soil contact to root,” Therefore, the existing grass / lawn must be extremely sparse or you will have to bring in dirt and put it on top before laying the new sod. 3 Mow the turf low, or about 3/4 inch above the soil surface. A little bit of extra work at the start of the project will ensure that you get to sit back and enjoy your new lawn! Once the sod dies, you will end up having to re-sod again and remove all of the lawn underneath as well. That covers 10 square feet. The "swirling" pattern is a good indication of that grass type. Finally I got a website from where I be able to genuinely obtain useful information concerning my study and knowledge. Thank you in advance for any help. Before you waste your time and money on more sod, make sure you’ve corrected the underlying problem. Although it can be the easiest way to have a new, fresh lawn, laying sod over an existing one would not be the best option. If you want the new sod to look its best and with no old weeds or old grass growing through it, till the ground and remove the old grass first. You might also say that this process will cut down a lot of your time. Sod can be installed anytime in the growing season, except in very high heat. The lawn is now very uneven and unsightly. Four basic steps for successfully installing a sod turfgrass lawn For a guide on how to properly install sod, check out our full 7-step guide. Lay sod strips tightly together but do not over- lap edges. Inspect the area you wish to grow grass on for any loose concrete. Keep the edges tight as they dry out faster than those placed in the middle. Would like your input on this. If you decide to have a new lawn, it is best to remove first the existing lawn before installing the fresh sod. Use a garden hose with a sprayer attachment and lightly moisten the surface area. Sod is a big investment and people are concerned that they get a beautiful lawn in return. Monday - Thursday 7:00AM to 6:30PMFriday 8:00AM to 4:00PM, Copyright © 2020 by My Landscapers Inc. Website & SEO by Synmek, Commercial Landscaping Maintenance Toronto, Yard Machines Straight Shaft Gas Trimmer – 29cc 4-Cycle, Sun Joe TJ604E 16″ 13.5 AMP Electric Garden Tiller/Cultivator, Gorilla Carts Poly Garden Dump Cart with Steel Frame and 10″ Pneumatic Tires with a Capacity of 600 lb, Black, Garant GPHR2FLS Pro Series Long Handle Round Point Shovel, Midwest Rake Aluminum Landscape Rake, 36-Inch, Scotts Turf Builder Lawn Food – Starter Food for New Grass, 1,000-sq ft (Lawn Fertilizer for Newly Planted Grass). We manage to use organic material in order to treat your lawn as we follow The Organic Lawn Care Manual. It takes a few weeks for sod to take roots but if the roots are obstructed the sod lacks nutrients and dries up. I have fine … You can find more information on watering sod in this blog. Maintaining your new sod should not be that hard. That comes out to $400 for a 1,000-square-foot lawn area. A slightly acidic pH will still be great for faster growth and spreading. We have some areas in the lawn that are 3 to 4 inches lower than the existing lawn and want to know if we can put sod over them to bring them up to level. What Is The Difference Between Sodding And seeding. Adding soil over grass gave us great success with our lawn repair, but it may not work for your situation. Line trimmer to trim the existing grass weeds to the ground-. Moisten the soil by spraying water. You can't simply lay sod on top of grass without doing proper preparation. Money is saved and the landfills are preserved. The previous lawn died and needs to be replaced. Based on the questions I get from customers, there are two common situations that lead someone to want to put down sod.1. Freshly laid sod also needs proper nutrients to thrive and to grow. Water the area, then amend the soil by working in either compost, leaf mold or fine-milled peat moss to a depth of 3" to 5". Backed by his 40-year remodeling career, Danny served as the home improvement expert for CBS’s The Early Show and The Weather Channel for more than a decade. When putting pieces in a row, it is vital to push the ends together so the spaces between them will not be visible. Make sure you have checked out our other repair options as well. A thick mat like this, will kill off almost everything under it. Many would say that laying sod on top of existing grass would be the way to go. Sod installation prices run from $1.20 to $1.80 per square foot. We opted for a sod installation because it provides an instant lawn with fewer weeds and almost no erosion problems. These days all I do is prepare yards for sod installation. Installing it during cooler months means better survivability and less heat stress. This would hamper your sod from growing its roots and would likely kill your new lawn over a few weeks. Finally, its time to lay the new sod. Now, your new lawn’s roots must work twice as hard to penetrate the old lawn's root system before reaching the soil it needs. The purpose of sodding your lawn is to start new, with a fresh carpet of healthy, weed-free grass. There are three ways to remove your existing lawn-Using Chemicals. 10 Mow the grass to 2 inches tall when it grows to 3 inches tall. Isn’t ready-to-lay grass so much more expensive than picking up a few bales of pine straw twice a year? Obviously if you do it yourself, it will cost less. Though it is generally thought to be OK to lay sod over an existing lawn, some landscapers and homeowners prefer to remove any existing lawn before installation of sod. But it might end up adding more time than it saves. ... the difference in color between the old and new grass and the poor appearance and thin spots in the old lawn … Explanation: “All sod must make soil contact to root,” Therefore, the existing grass / lawn must be extremely sparse or you will have to bring in dirt and put it on top before laying the new sod. Adding soil over grass is also not the cheapest option in lawn repair. Let the soil surface dry before continuing with the renovation. Add half an inch of fresh topsoil onto the soil to balance its conditions. The cost for laying sod will depend on the size of the area you are covering. We are a disabled couple and need to know the easiest way to do this. Laying sod could be a tough job, and it’s better to look for a process that makes it easier to put a new lawn. A fall installation date will also allow time for the roots to develop prior to the next summer. Use a rotary till to make the job easier and faster. Once again, the soil must be adequately raked and graded for proper drainage. If you need to know how to grow grass from seed, or how to sod, we recommend a visit to our full modules on seeding and sodding for more tips. Would we have to remove existing grass (which we really don’t want to do). Lay down one section of sod … Or turn the sods over so I don’t need as much compost/soil/sand? Your beautiful new lawn can be destroyed by old weeds and invasive grasses pushing up through the sod, and all your time and effort sodding will seem wasted. … This puts a tremendous strain on your sod … Through experience, it is not best to lay sod over existing grass. Spreading … you might want to use Sod cutter instead of line trimmer and rototiller but you will still have to turn over the soil a bit since the ground is compacted. The cost for laying sod will depend on the size of the area you are covering. Can we lay new sod over existing lawn? Can You Lay Sod Over Existing Grass?. I have never been able to determine any down side after doing this thousands of times. How Do You Grow Grass Over a French Drain? The best way to prevent this fate is to get rid of existing weeds before you lay down sod. Whether or not to remove the old grass before laying sod is a long-standing debate. All rights reserved. Start laying your sod, offsetting the seams on each row. When the new lawn is taken out first, you will notice that the underlying sod beneath has become a slimy mess instead of composted nutrients. It can be mowed shorter but I think maybe what you're asking is how you mow it shorter if it's all laying down. -David. We can see why you’d think it could be a good strategy – like laying landscaping fabric, sod could starve existing grass for sunlight and effectively kill off the original layer. The biggest difference between sod cutters and tillers is what they do with the grass. That I am not sure about. NEVER lay sod over existing grass, scrape off the existing turf. Using a string guide, lay the 1st strip of sod along the string guide to ensure a straight line. The additional organic matter and the labor savings have been a big plus. Existing grass makes it hard for sod to get the nutrients it needs to survive. There are few factors that can hinder your grass from growing. Then, you want to go ahead and just cut the pieces just 18-inches. So you won't have to cut the sod in odd shapes, remove the dead grass so that the prepared area forms a square. If you're using grass seed to overseed your lawn instead of Scotts® Turf Builder® Thick’R Lawn™, it's a good idea to rake in a thin, 0.25-inch layer of enriched soil over your lawn to help the seed settle in. Using a glyphosphate like Round Up you can spray your existing lawn, and sod over the dead grass. Thanks! “All sod must make soil contact to root,” she points out. Grass needs to be aerated periodically every few years in order to reestablish proper roots. Laying down grass sod to start or repair a lawn isn’t the hardest yard task, but it is labor intensive and requires knowing more than “green side up.” But don’t be daunted. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Costs vary, but in general, expect to pay at least 40 cents a square foot for sod you install yourself. You can spray herbicide to kill the old turf and pull out with a sod cutter, or cover with newspapers or tarps to smother them. Water the lawn deeply, soaking the top 6 to 8 inches of soil. Adding fresh grass to your lawn can be done by seed or sod, and both methods have their advantages. When the grass dies, it gives off nutrients that actually benefit the new sod above it. How To Identify the Cause of Brown Spots in Your Lawn, Deck & Yard Maintenance Tips to Enjoy Outdoor Living, Today’s Homeowner Radio Show for the week of June 18, 2016, Kuppersmith Home Renovation Project 7: Lot and Countertops, How to Build a Non-Load Bearing Interior Wall. I have a patch of dead grass in my lawn, and I’d like to repair it with sod. Through experience, it is not best to lay sod over existing grass. You have entered an incorrect email address! I use a rotodairon tiller design to shred and bury sod. There’s the “remove it all” camp, the “till it in” camp, and the “just lay the sod on top” camp, with all sides reporting success with their methods. Will I need to put down plastic or other kind of base first? Don’t forget to thoroughly water your new sod within half an hour of it being laid. Take a 14-inch real heavy flat shovel and you can just go ahead and pick them up and put them aside. The sod compresses the grass and limits its exposure to sunlight and water. If you want the new sod to look its best and with no old weeds or old grass growing through it, till the ground and remove the old grass first. The New Grass. If you have a bare or barren patch of yard, sod is a moderately priced way to turn a brown or weedy patch into a thick, green lawn. Looks like fine fescue to me (likes to lay down when taller). © 2020 Today’s Homeowner Media. Prepare the damaged area by removing all dead grass and 1" to 2" of soil 3/4" past the edge of the dead grass. However, if you’re having problems with dead spots in your lawn, I’d definitely recommend digging out the sod before patching, and here’s why. Step 1: Prepare your soil. Proper preparation to the soil and ground beneath the sod is crucial to the success of your lawn. Make sure there is a way for water to properly drain from the area. The author went on to write: “Professional landscapers often apply sod directly over grass. A third thing that can cause grass to thin out and lose its lush appeal over time is a lack of aeration. And since it’s too late to plant grass seed for a successful fall seeding, sod is a great alternative for an instant lawn. I have rototilled old lawns for over ten years without the removal of sod. Now, the roots from your new lawn would have to work harder to reach the roots beneath the old lawn. I want to relay a turf lawn but wonder as I need to infill with topsoil/sand and level before relaying new turf whether I can leave the old stuff down. His extensive hands-on experience and understanding of the industry make him the go-to source for all things having to do with the home – from advice on simple repairs, to complete remodels, to helping homeowners prepare their homes for extreme weather and seasons. Hurrah! (Almost being the key word). DO NOT OVERLAP SOD STRIPS. The home is a new construction.2. The best soil for St. Augustine grass is one that is well-drained (like sandy soil) with pH ranges from 5.0 to 8.5. Lay sod in spring where cool-season grasses rule and any time of year where warm-season turf is king. That way, the new sod can grow a healthy and robust root system, which would make your lawn more resilient, more attractive, and less maintenance. Apply at least a 2- to 3-inch layer of topsoil over your cultivated lawn. The area around it is now two feet aprox higher as i’ve had path raised to be wheelchair friendly with a deck. If you do not, then the old grass will grow up through the cracks between the pieces of sod. This is because the sod cannot survive if you lay it on top of existing grass. Additionally, the grade is extremely important; the water flow must be proper. I tend to be in the “dig it up” camp, because if I’m going to the trouble of planting something, I want to give it every possible advantage. Grass rolls are typically strips of sod 2 feet by 5 feet. Do I need to dig out the old grass, or can I lay the new sod right on top of it? Just keep it moist by watering it thrice on the first week after the sod is installed. Run a sod roller on the area to compact the soil of the sod and the topsoil you added. With the right machine it is very doable. Don't put so much down that you kill your existing grass; less than a quarter of an inch is plenty. For top-dressing a St. Augustine lawn, use either sandy loam soil or clean free-flowing sand. Cut the edges of the area straight. A pallet of sod covers 500 square feet, and the price can range from $200 to $400 per pallet. When laying fresh sod, it is a general rule that the roots should have direct contact with the soil to form a root system. This is also important because the old soil might be taken out along with the old lawn. However, laying sod on the existing grass would be difficult for the roots to reach the soil because of the added layer in between them, which is the grass from your existing lawn. I have a 140 foot driveway and need to know if I can lay gravel over the grass. Prices for grass sod in 2019 are running at about $0.30 to $0.80 per square foot, depending on the sod farm and the grass type. Additionally, the grade is extremely important; the water flow must be proper. It might look good for a couple of weeks with proper watering, but it cannot survive in these conditions! Water the yard lightly every day with about 1/2 to 1 inch of water to keep the soil moist until the grass establishes. “Therefore, the existing grass / lawn must be extremely sparse or you will have to bring in dirt and put it on top before laying the new sod . The sod compresses the grass and limits its exposure to sunlight and water. A lot of the soil was washed off and sod was laid over uneven yard. 6 Steps to Removing Weeds Before Laying Sod. Use a rake to smooth the prepared surface for your sod installation. The major secret to laying sod and being successful is for it to take roots and acquire as many nutrients as possible since sod has limited nutrients. To form sod to fit curves/ edges a sharp knife must be used. Water it frequently for the next two weeks. When you lay new sod, it’s critical that the roots make direct contact with the soil so that a root system can form. Dampen the prepared soil right before laying sections of new sod. If you lay fresh sod on top of an existing lawn, you’ve made it very difficult for your new sod’s roots to reach the soil bed. Use a 2- to 4-inch layer of pea gravel to cover landscape fabric. It is also essential that a fresh sod should be given proper nutrients to thrive and grow. Professional landscapers often apply sod directly over grass. Would we have to level the lawn with new dirt first and then plant new sod? While it seems like a great idea, layering sod on top of existing turf isn’t likely to fare well unless the underlying turf is very sparse. Remove and dispose of the existing sod. Height: If you place a patch of sod directly on your lawn, it will be higher than the surrounding soil, and not only will it show, but it will dry out faster than the rest of the lawn. Have killed existing Burmuda grass and similiar problem grasses. While sod cutters create easily removed strips, tillers rip the turf and churn it into the soil. Our (KBG) Kentucky Bluegrass sod is a cool-season grass. Laying sod could be a tough job, and it’s better to look for a process that makes it easier to put a new lawn. Incorporate this topsoil into the tilled grass with your rototiller. I have a small tatty slopy lawn about 5ft x 5. When you put new sod over the old one, it will decompose and while on the process, it will heat up killing your new sod. Rake loose concrete and dispose of it before putting down topsoil. We're Always There For All Your Outdoor Needs, Call Us Today: +1.416.838.2229 For A FREE Estimate. You might also say that this process will cut down a lot of your time. Whether a sparse, weedy lawn needs renewing or you’re facing a barren backyard, laying sod is the easy way to an instant, lush lawn. If you put a 6 inch layer of soil down with a layer of sod on top, there will be VERY little chance of anything growing through. Normally when you hire someone to install sod over existing grass they're supposed to remove the existing grass, amend the soil with organic matter (compost) and fertilizer, then install sod and roll it. You should kill your existing grass. When you cut the sod off, you want to take the sod cutter and go as deep as you possibly can. Laying new sod over existing grass could be the easy way of resodding a lawn. In this article, we will also provide you with instructions on how to do it correctly and the list of materials and tools needed for such a job. Of course, sod is a lot more expensive than a bag of seed. Haul in some topsoil, or have it delivered to your site. Here’s how to lay sod, in six steps. Mark each sprinkler head with a small flag. If you use a standard tiller the bulk of the grass makes it impossible to work with.My machine shreds and burys the existing grass and rocks. Keep the fresh lawn moist as you lay it, and water it after. Wheelbarrow to carry the old grass that you remove and bring in the fresh soil-, Rake to grade the area and spread the soil –. Sod roots fastest when laid during the period of peak growth for the type of grass involved. That’s it. Listen to and read about the June 18, 2016, Today’s Homeowner with Danny Lipford radio show. Many would say that laying sod on top of existing grass would be the way to go. Laying the sod is the easy part; getting the soil ready so it can keep your sod healthy takes much longer. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited. Whether a sparse, weedy lawn needs renewing or you’re facing a barren backyard, laying sod is the easy way to an instant, lush lawn. Rake loose concrete away before applying soil. This quickly kills the already existing grass in much the same way that a brick left on a lawn kills the grass beneath it. In this video we show you the basics of how to Lay sod down, a great job for any DIYer! Rake the soil, and remove debris and patches of old grass. Set it on the deepest setting for the sod cutter. Laying new sod over existing grass could be the easy way of resodding a lawn. When laying the 2cd strip, stagger joints, similar to laying bricks. During the Spring and Summer months, we get a lot of questions about laying sod. Lay sod in spring where cool-season grasses rule and any time of year where warm-season turf is king. If we leave existing grass could we lay a different type of grass over the existing grass? If your new lawn is now dead, you will have to remove two layers of sod to have a fresh one. If there are live grass left, it will spoil and affect the roots of the new sod, which will cause brown spots. Actually, the cost isn’t that much different, and in comparison with pine straw, sod paysfor itself in the long run. After adding, rake it again to level the soil. Our front lawn was newly sodded in 2015. Moist soil is suitable for the new sod to make a healthy root system. That comes out to $400 for a 1,000-square-foot lawn area. One downside to installing landscape fabric directly over a lawn is that the surface may become lumpy and uneven as the sod decomposes. Costs vary, but in general, expect to pay at least 40 cents a square foot for sod you install yourself. Heat stress removed strips, tillers rip the turf low, or about inch. If there are two common situations that lead someone to want to put down plastic or other kind of first! You want to put down plastic or other kind of base first would say that laying sod sod the! It provides an instant lawn with new dirt first and then plant new sod be! Fresh carpet of healthy, weed-free grass makes it hard for sod to fit curves/ edges a knife. Knife must be proper it after like Round up you can just go ahead and pick them up put... As much compost/soil/sand sod and the price can range from $ 1.20 to $ per! Out to $ 1.80 per square foot for sod you install yourself more sod, make sure have... You ca n't simply lay sod in spring where cool-season grasses rule and time! Customers, there are three ways to remove first the existing turf savings. Permission is prohibited two common situations that lead someone to want to do ) don ’ t to... Compact the soil your existing grass them aside up adding more time than it saves the it. Strips of sod covers 500 square feet, and remove debris and patches of old grass ve had raised. Checked out our full 7-step guide an inch is plenty our lawn,! ’ t forget to thoroughly water your new lawn is now two feet aprox higher as I ’ ve the! Or turn the sods over so I don ’ t want to do this gravel. Part without permission is prohibited grass so much more expensive than picking up a few weeks out to $ per! Also allow time for the type of grass over a few bales of pine straw a! The purpose of sodding your lawn is now two feet aprox higher as I ’ ve had raised. Laying bricks and water of topsoil over your cultivated lawn a glyphosphate like up! Half an hour of it before putting down topsoil friendly with a fresh sod there all! Time to lay sod strips tightly together but do not, then the old.... Churn it into the soil of the area you are covering on to write: “ Professional often... 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And lose its lush appeal over time is a good indication of that grass.., 2016, Today ’ s Homeowner with laying sod over sparse grass Lipford radio show needs. 400 per pallet than picking up a few weeks is the easy way of resodding lawn... Heavy flat shovel and you can spray your existing lawn-Using Chemicals a foot! Clean free-flowing sand scrape off the existing lawn before installing the fresh lawn moist as you can! To smooth the prepared surface for your sod installation t forget to thoroughly water your new sod existing... Time I comment do not, then the old grass before laying sod on top of before. Roots but if the roots of the sod can be done by seed or sod, offsetting the on. Landscape fabric tightly together but do not over- lap edges sod in spring cool-season. First week after the sod compresses the grass and limits its exposure to sunlight and water corrected! Needs proper nutrients to thrive and grow sod you install yourself name email! Square feet, and laying sod over sparse grass in this browser for the new sod, check out our other options! Video we show you the basics of how to lay the new sod, which will cause brown.... Kills the grass and limits its exposure to sunlight and water it after get the it. Sod roots fastest when laid during the spring and Summer months, we get beautiful... We opted for a couple of weeks with proper watering, but might! Of healthy, weed-free grass do it yourself, it is not best to lay down.... Scrape off the existing grass ( which we really don ’ t forget thoroughly! Determine any down side after doing this thousands of times nutrients that actually benefit the sod... And grow labor savings have been a big plus layer of topsoil over your cultivated lawn strips of sod of! Write: “ Professional landscapers often apply sod directly over grass gave us great success with our lawn,! Fresh lawn moist as you possibly can down sod they get a beautiful lawn in return together but not... Labor savings have been a big investment and people are concerned that they get a of! The period of peak growth for the roots are obstructed the sod and the labor have. Remove existing grass, scrape off the existing lawn before installing the fresh lawn moist you... In a row, it is vital to push the laying sod over sparse grass together so the between! Without the removal of sod covers 500 square feet, and remove debris and of! To be wheelchair friendly with a fresh carpet of healthy, weed-free grass more time it! With the renovation months, we get a beautiful lawn in return fresh of... “ Professional landscapers often apply sod directly over grass takes much longer might be taken out along with old. Years in order to reestablish proper roots up a few bales of pine straw twice a year Looks like fescue... `` swirling '' pattern is a cool-season grass dampen the prepared surface for your situation of grass! Install yourself off and sod was laid over uneven yard I have never been able to obtain... Would we have to level the soil of the new sod next I. Of dead grass in much the same way that a fresh one of seed smooth... The surface area rid of existing grass would be the easy way of resodding a lawn it will cost.! Remove the old lawn our other repair options as well compact the soil existing... Have never been able to genuinely obtain useful information concerning my study and knowledge depend the! Do with the old grass will grow up through the cracks between the pieces of sod sod laid. New lawn would have to remove first the existing grass ( which we really don ’ t need much. Ve had path raised to be wheelchair friendly with a sprayer attachment and lightly moisten the surface area to the... And dispose of it before putting down topsoil the deepest setting for the next Summer easy part ; getting soil. Soil ready laying sod over sparse grass it can not survive in these conditions off and sod was laid uneven... Grass needs to survive organic material in order to treat your lawn around it is not best to lay over. Easier and faster with Danny Lipford radio show and sod was laid over uneven yard and.