Overseeding Your Lawn

The act of spreading a layer of grass seeds across your existing yard is called overseeding. It’s a good thing. In fact, overseeding is a landscaping little secret for growing a green and lush lawn.

WHY YOU SHOULD OVERSEED YOUR LAWN

Even in a healthy lawn, grass will die every season. This is particularly true in colder climates (we’re looking at you, Montana). Overseeding your lawn will help replace dead grass and, at the same time, thicken up your lawn which is good for aesthetics and weed resistance. 

WARM VS COLD SEASON GRASS OVERSEEDING

Overseeding typically applies only to cold season grass lawns. However warm season Bermuda lawns can be overseeded with Bermuda grass in the spring to help remedy thin or patchy growth. Bermuda lawns may also be overseeded with Ryegrass in the fall to provide some ‘green up’ over the colder winter months when Bermuda grass is yellow and dormant.

To learn more about grass types and recommended growing regions visit our Comparing Cool and Warm Season Grasses article here. 

WHEN TO OVERSEED YOUR LAWN

Many people overseed to help fix a lawn that’s gone thin, but pros overseed to prevent thinning in the first place. Depending on the region you live in, overseeding times and strategies will differ.

COLD SEASON GRASS (Northern US)

If you live in the northern US, it’s recommended that you overseed your lawn in the fall, so that new grass can establish itself in the milder fall weather. So, plan to overseed at least 45 days before the first frost. For most regions the ideal time is September or October when temps are in the low 70’s during the day. Otherwise, you can overseed in the springtime as long as the young grass gets established before the summer heat sets in.

WARM SEASON GRASS (Southern US)

The best time to overseed your lawn in the Southern states is late spring or early summer, since warm season grass types need fairly warm soil in order to germinate and grow. Aim to overseed on a beautiful 65 F° day.

If you are overseeding along side your Sunday nutrient plan, stick to your custom feeding timeline. Nutrients will support your existing grass and help your new grass come in thick and strong.

6 STEPS TO OVERSEEDING YOUR LAWN

Before you overseed, determine your existing grass type. It’s key!

  1. Pick up the appropriate seed mix for your grass type.
  2. Mow your lawn a hair shorter than usual. Adjusting your mower’s blade so more than ⅓ of the grass blades are cut during mowing will create more space for the seeds to reach the soil.
  3. Bag the clippings if you can.
  4. Rake out excessive thatch and remove any debris.
  5. Use a seed spreader to spread the seeds across your lawn according to the advised lbs/per square feet based on the seed type or blend you’re using.
  6. Stand back and admire your work!

PRO TIP: Watering is vital to initiate seed germination and to get young grass to grow. Make sure your lawn doesn’t dry out but don’t overwater it either. It all depends on your climate. Many areas in NE (i.e. Boston) and NW (i.e. Portland) may not have to water at all, while drier areas like the Texas panhandle may need to water every day until seeds germinate.

 

Overseed Rates

Cold Season Grasses*

  • Kentucky Bluegrass – 1 ½ – 2 LBS per 1,000 sq ft.
  • Fescue – 3-5 LBS per 1,000 sq ft.
  • Ryegrass – 2 ½ – 5 LBS per 1,000 sq ft.

Warm Season Grasses*

  • Bermuda – 1 ½ – 2 LBS per 1,000 sq ft.
  • Bahia – 2 ½ – 5 LBS per 1,000 sq ft.
  • Fall Perennial Ryegrass overseed on Bermuda – 10-15 LBS per 1,000 sq ft

*Be sure to follow seed manufacturer’s specific application recommendations.

It All Starts With The Right Seed

One of the most vital things you can do to improve your lawn is to grow the right grass type for your location and conditions. With the Sunday line of pro quality grass seeds, you can choose the best type for your lawn.

 

Sunday Grass Seed is available for purchase after you sign up for your lawn plan. Once you are signed up, you can add-on seed at anytime from your account page.