How Long Does Turf Need To Germinate

Have you recently sown the lawn and are now wondering how long it actually takes for it to shine so beautifully green? Or do you simply want to know how long the lawn needs to germinate and how you can have a positive influence on the germination of the lawn?

Lawn care is not a science and often such questions cannot be answered with a clear duration. There are a variety of factors that have an impact on germination time. Likewise, the type of lawn also plays a big role.

Rasen Keimen Dauer

But how long does the lawn need on average to germinate?

The factors influencing the germination time of the lawn
Gardening is not mathematics. Nevertheless, certain factors can be accurately described that have a great influence on the final result. What are these factors and how can you influence them positively?

The influence of water
To get the germination process started, water is the key trigger. With the intake of water, the seedling enlarges and various enzymes are released to start the germination process.

If the seedling does not receive water, neither the nutrients are used nor the germination processes continue. If the germ dries, the germination process is interrupted. The most important thing for the water supply is that it is continuous. It is of no use to water the soil every few days if it dries out again in the meantime.

Therefore, it is better to use continuous irrigation, which is designed to ensure that the seedling is constantly supplied with water. In order for the seedling to better absorb the moisture, it is also advisable to roll it after sowing. By rolling the seedling gets a better contact with the soil and can absorb the moisture much better.

The seedling must breathe

Okay, the seedling may not be human and it doesn’t have a mouth to breathe, but oxygen is still essential for its survival.

The seedling gets its oxygen from the soil. In most cases, this should not be a problem because most grasses do not have an excessive need for oxygen.

However, if the soil is too firm and there is a risk that the seedling will not be able to take up the oxygen, then the soil should be aerified.

Too much water either from heavy rains or as a result of too much irrigation can also cause the seedling to not be able to absorb the oxygen optimally.

The temperature and the influence on the germination period.

Grass seeds should be sown when the soil has a temperature above 10°C. However, this does not mean that grass seeds should be sown as early as spring on the first warmer days when the thermometer rises above the 10°C limit.

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This is because the soil always needs a little longer to adjust to the outside temperatures.

Ideal for most grass varieties are temperatures between 16°C to 23°C. In the temperature there is also an upper limit, but the seedlings do not feel comfortable. If the soil temperature exceeds 45°C, most seedlings will die. The longer the seedlings are exposed to this extreme temperature, the greater the mortality rate.

The germination process

The factors presented here have a strong influence on the germination process. But what does the development of a seed actually look like?

In the first step, the seedling absorbs water. The water then sets in motion all the other processes that allow the seed to become a full-grown blade of grass.

In order to be able to absorb more nutrients, the seedling swells additionally due to the water. In this way, it increases its surface area and it becomes even easier for it to absorb the moisture.

With the absorption of moisture, enzymes are released that keep the entire germination process going. The enzymes are responsible, among other things, for enabling the seedling to gain energy.

After the nutrients have been absorbed and transformed, the seed coat bursts. Now the actual germination and growth process begins.

With the formation of the first cotyledon, photosynthesis also begins at the same time.

The germination period of the conventional grass varieties

Rasen Keimdauer

How long the seed takes to germinate depends not only on the previously mentioned factors, but also on the variety that is used. But not only between the individual varieties there are different germination times, but the seeds of the same variety can of course also develop at different speeds.

In general, a germination period between 6 and 28 days is normal.

The fastest grass seeds include European ryegrass, red fescue and tall fescue. These varieties take between 7 and 18 days to germinate.

Significantly slower to sort in there are the grass seeds of Kentucky bluegrass and bluegrass. These need between 14 and 24 days to germinate.

So you see, between the slower and the faster varieties is quite a big difference in the speed to germinate.

With the turbo seed faster to success
However, if you belong to the very impatient variety of gardener, then turbo seed may be an option for you. If you want the lawn to be visible as quickly as possible, for example because an important celebration is coming up and you want to present the lawn there, or so that you can still quickly enjoy the new lawn in the summer, then a turbo seed could be your salvation.

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Manufacturers promise that with the Turbosaat the first signs of the lawn emerge from the ground after only 7 days. So the Turbosaat is actually quite far ahead in terms of speed.

The prerequisite here is, of course, that the seedlings have been watered regularly and that the nutrients are also available in sufficient quantities.

Measures so that the lawn germinates safely

Planting in the ground is the first important measure so that the seedlings can start growing. But how can you ensure that the seedlings actually start the growth process?

The top priority should be optimal watering. Ideally, water the lawn once a day. At the same time, you do not have to use too much water. Because the principle “a lot helps a lot” is not applicable here. On the contrary, if you apply too much water to the fresh seed this can also be detrimental to the soil.

In addition, so that the lawn seeds can find the best conditions, the soil should be loosened. Therefore, before the appearance of the lawn seeds, the soil should be scarified and aerified once. Thus, the soil is freed from all plant remains and the soil is nice and loose.

At the beginning, the first seedlings are very weak and can hardly prevail against weeds or other plants. Therefore, you should make sure that weeds are removed as soon as possible. Clover in the lawn is also a real threat and can lead to bare patches.

In addition, do not overdo it with the lawn mowing. Rather, give the lawn a little more time. It is quite enough if the lawn has a few weeks of rest and when it is high enough, you can start mowing the lawn for the first time.

As another tip, you can also germinate lawn seedlings under controlled conditions. To do this, simply place the seedlings on a damp kitchen towel. Now water the seedlings in the same amount as the seeds planted in the ground. The light conditions should also be comparable.

With this simple trick, you can follow the development without having to take the seeds out of the ground. If the seedlings in the soil lag behind their neighbors on the kitchen towel, this is a sure sign that something is wrong with the growing conditions.

Why the lawn does not germinate.

Actually, the first small blades of grass should be seen after a few days. However, sometimes the desired success does not happen and you wait in vain for the lawn to finally start growing.

But what are the possible causes that are responsible for the fact that the sprouts do not grow properly?

One of the main reasons could be that the soil is too hard. Especially old rather dry soil is not suitable for lawn seeds. Even though lawn seeds are very frugal and do not require perfect soil, the soil should already be somewhat loosened.

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As a possible solution for the too hard soil is to perform aerification. This will loosen the soil and again oxygen can be better absorbed.

If the seedlings do not start to sprout, it is not always the soil or the wrong watering that is responsible. Sometimes it can be quite banal reasons. For example, when birds start picking out the seeds. For birds, the seeds are a real feast when they are still lying open on the ground.

To drive away the birds, you can either use a scarecrow or stretch a net. However, the net is not very practical for larger lawns.


But perhaps the initial quality of the lawn seeds is not good enough. The choice of lawn seeds is very large. To save here may mean that you get goods that have low quality. Here there is a risk that the seeds will not germinate.

Therefore, you should either buy the lawn seeds from your trusted dealer or reach for high-quality seeds on the Internet on proven platforms.

The right time for planting is also important for the success of the seedlings. If the seedlings are either planted too early and the soil temperatures are still too cold, then the growth process cannot begin.

But even if it is too hot and too dry, it is not a good time to sow the lawn. After all, in midsummer, even the most intensive watering will not bring anything.

Therefore, the lawn should be sown either in the spring, preferably in May, or in the fall, in September.


  • James Jones

    Meet James Jones, a passionate gardening writer whose words bloom with the wisdom of an experienced horticulturist. With a deep-rooted love for all things green, James has dedicated his life to sharing the art and science of gardening with the world. James's words have found their way into countless publications, and his gardening insights have inspired a new generation of green thumbs. His commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship shines through in every article he crafts.

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