steps for a successful lawn (part 1)

June 25th, 2021

Among the several factors that come into play after seed and straw is down, one of the most critical factors for a successful lawn is obvious- water strategy. For the thickest and greenest lawn, follow these steps.

The first watering after installation for quickest germination.

This should be very brief (2-5 minutes max). You want just enough to dampen the soil causing the new seed to adhere to the soil. Too much water can cause wash-out, waste and water.

After the first watering comes the routine strategy, which often gets overlooked.

You’ll want to water in the morning but ONLY between 6 am and 10 am, once per day. If there are drought conditions, watering in the late afternoon can help. It is important to do a second watering before 6 pm or when it starts to get cooler. Cooler temperatures can prevent plants from taking in as much water and opens the opportunity for diseases since the water stays mostly stagnant overnight. Mid-day is NEVER an option as this is simply a waste of water and potentially seed because of evaporation and wash-out/run off.

How much and how long should you water in the morning?

The goal is to saturate the surface up to 6 inches deep. To do this, you can use a screwdriver, ruler, or a shovel to bury into the surface so you can gauge how wet the soil is.

Depending on geographic locations, your seed type may differ.

Shady seeds or mixed shade/sun seeds will typically begin to germinate within 7-10 days. You can expect 50-70% of them to germinate within the first two weeks and the rest to germinate over a 1-2 month period.


Removing straw early will pull up any seedlings or grass in the germination process, so make sure you do not do this!

Weeds will grow.

Do not treat or pull the weeds until the grass is at least 6 inches high. Apply an herbicide specific to new lawns after 6 weeks into the germination process or once it is at least 6 inches high and before the first mow.