You want to lay a new lawn? With these tips, the new lawn installation succeeds in a few steps.
If you plan your new lawn, start seeding at the right time and prepare the soil appropriately, you can look forward to a perfect result after just six to eight weeks. Here you can find out how to turn your new lawn into a green carpet with a dense turf in just a few steps.
Laying a new lawn: the most important things in a nutshell
Establish a new lawn in April/May or between late August and late September. Prepare the soil well and let it rest for up to a week. Then you can sow the lawn seeds evenly on the slightly roughened surface – it is best to rely on high-quality seeds. A windless, dry day is ideal for re-seeding the lawn. After sowing, press the seeds down with a lawn roller and water the seedbed thoroughly.
choose the optimal time for the lawn replanting.
It is best to plan the new lawn installation for April or May – the soil will have warmed up a bit by then, so the new lawn will germinate and grow quickly. Another favorable period for laying a new lawn is late August to late September. Then just the right mild temperatures prevail and rain also usually falls in sufficient quantities. Although lawn seeds can withstand dry periods, they must not dry out after germination. So midsummer would be rather inconvenient for new lawn installation – unless you irrigate the area daily.
prepare the soil for the new lawn planting
Before sowing the lawn comes the soil preparation. It is the most important step in the process of lawn replanting. First of all, the old turf is removed. It is worthwhile to cut the old turf flat and dig it under by hand or compost it elsewhere in the garden. If you simply remove the existing turf with a power hoe, you will have the problem that when you subsequently level it with a rake, individual tufts of grass will keep coming to the surface. After deep loosening with the spade or power hoe, if necessary, first work the soil with the cultivator to break up larger clumps of soil. Then level the area with a wide wooden rake, removing all larger stones and roots.
On heavy, clayey soils, you should spread a layer of building sand about five centimeters high for better drainage – this way you will have much fewer problems later with moss in the lawn that needs to be removed. Tip: After you have roughly leveled the area, you should pre-compact the soil with the lawn roller – this makes it easier to identify remaining hills and hollows, which are then leveled again with the rake or lawn squeegee in the second work step.
let the soil rest for a few days
After you have finished preparing the soil, you should let it rest for up to a week so that it can “settle”. The larger voids will disappear during this time and you will not sink as deeply when walking on the surface. If individual weeds sprout again during this period, you should remove them with a hoe without loosening the soil too much. After that, it is ready for lawn seeding or laying sod.
rely on quality lawn seed
Those who rely on high-quality seed for new lawn installation will feel the difference: lawn seed mixtures namely show great differences in quality. Recommended seed mixtures bear the so-called RSM seal, short for Regel-Saedgut-Mischung. They are composed of selected grass varieties whose properties are precisely matched to the subsequent intended use. Seed mixtures such as the “Berlin Tiergarten” are not ideal for lawns. They contain cheap forage grasses that grow quickly and do not form a dense turf. Do not be irritated by the fact that the new lawn germinates and grows relatively slowly – this is a quality feature of high-quality seed mixtures.
spread lawn seed evenly.
Wait for a windless, dry day until the new lawn is established and roughen the area slightly again with a rake. Pour the lawn seed into a bowl or small bucket and spread it with even arm sweeps. On large areas, a spreader cart, which, by the way, you can borrow at the garden center, is very helpful.
After sowing, work the area in longitudinal and transverse lanes with the lawn roller. In this way, the soil is compacted again and the seeds get a perfect contact with the ground. Caution: If the soil is very moist or even wet, you should wait a little longer before rolling. Loamy soil in particular often sticks to the roller together with the fresh lawn seeds and the seeds are distributed unevenly over the area during rolling.
Immediately after sowing, water the seedbed thoroughly so that the seeds germinate quickly. To do this, use a sprinkler or – for smaller areas – a shower attachment for the garden hose to distribute the water evenly over the area. Leave the sprinkler on the area so that you can also water quickly in the coming weeks in case of drought.
Tips for lawn care after new installation
Experience shows that the critical time in new lawn installation is the first six to eight weeks. During this period, the soil should never dry out. Lawn grasses are very sensitive until they are cut for the first time, especially when it comes to lack of water. After that, however, the new lawn has survived the worst and becomes much easier to maintain. The grasses should now be between five and ten centimeters high and the new lawn may be mowed for the first time. Afterwards, immediately apply a long-term lawn fertilizer with an immediate effect so that a dense turf forms as quickly as possible.
One more note: New lawn installation is much faster with sod, but it is much more expensive. The steps are very similar. After soil preparation, a starter fertilizer is applied and the sod is installed. This should be done immediately after purchase, as then there is the best chance for growth. Then the sod is rolled and thoroughly watered. In the following two to three weeks, it should be kept permanently slightly moist.