How to overseed your lawn in the fall and when to do it

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A manus spreading writer seed connected a lawn
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Fall is almost here, which intends we tin slow down nan upkeep connected our lawns. We don’t request to mow truthful often (here’s when you should extremity mowing for nan winter), aliases h2o nan abstraction arsenic regularly. Having said that, your work’s not done yet. Fall is simply a premier clip for overseeding, which gives your writer a chance to bounce backmost from immoderate harm taken complete nan summer. It’s perfect for filling successful bare patches and priming your section successful clip for nan winter; much mini standard versus learning how to works writer seed successful full. 

But, really should you overseed your gait and erstwhile is nan champion clip to do it? Method and timing is everything erstwhile it comes to this chore. Get things correct and you will beryllium rewarded pinch a heavy and complete lawn, but get things incorrect and nan frost tin ruin your results and discarded your efforts. 

Here we will return you done really to overseed your section step-by-step, including erstwhile champion to do it and why. So you tin tackle this task pinch confidence. 

When should you overseed your section successful nan fall? 

Overseeding is champion done successful nan early fall, betwixt mid August and early October — truthful there’s still clip to repair your yard. The main arena you want to debar is nan first frost arsenic immoderate seedlings will perish.

The type of writer seed you’re sewing tin make a quality to nan champion ungraded conditions arsenic well; cool-season grass, specified arsenic Kentucky bluegrass, prefers ungraded temperatures beneath 65°F, while warm-season grass, for illustration Bermuda grass, prefers temperatures of astatine slightest 65°F.

You tin usage a basal ungraded thermometer to cheque nan conditions, specified arsenic nan Urban Worm Soil Thermometer ($9, Amazon). Because of this, you are better-off overseeding warm-season grasses earlier successful nan year, from precocious outpouring to early summer.

A manus scattering writer seeds into nan soil

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

While you mightiness deliberation what remains of nan power of summertime will make for perfect increasing conditions, don’t overseed astatine this time. Grass seeds are vulnerable and really for illustration moist conditions and little temperatures to germinate. So, if you’re still facing nan last stages of a drought, clasp disconnected connected overseeding. Because of nan moisture preference, overseeding is besides champion done a time aliases 2 aft rainfall, but carnivore successful mind you want nan ungraded moist, not saturated.  

It’s besides bully believe to overseed your section arsenic soon arsenic it’s been aerated. The amended aerial circulation and entree to nutrients successful nan ungraded gives writer seeds an improved chance of growth. Plus, if nan seeds onshore successful nan puncture holes, they person a amended chance of retaining moisture. See our guideline connected how to aerate a lawn for afloat instructions connected this. 

dandelions successful grass

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

There should beryllium less weeds astatine this clip of twelvemonth (another logic why overseeding is perfect successful nan fall), but you’ll want to region immoderate that stay earlier overseeding. The roots of weeds are beardown and dominating — these will hog nan nutrients successful nan soil, which will stunt nan maturation of your writer seedlings.

Check retired our guides connected how to get free of dandelions and how to get free of crabgrass for circumstantial instructions. Be observant wherever immoderate seed heads person developed connected weeds anterior to removal; if these disperse connected removal you could person much weeds harvest up adjacent season. We urge Grandpa’s Weeder for mundane weeding ($39, Amazon). Take attraction if you scheme to usage immoderate herbicides arsenic these tin often termination writer seeds; ever publication nan explanation to beryllium sure.  

How to overseed a lawn 

1. Choose nan correct writer seed — Before thing else, make judge you’re planting nan correct type of writer seed to lucifer nan remainder of your lawn. Cool-season grasses are often recovered successful nan north, while warm-season writer frequents nan south. If successful doubt, consult an master astatine your section location section store. 

2. Mow your section — When it comes to overseeding, nan first measurement is to mow your section to a debased height. Cut it down to astir 1.5-2 inches successful length. 

3. Rake nan dormant writer — Take a rake to your section afterwards to region immoderate dormant grass. You mightiness deliberation this is making things look worse, but this clears nan area for nan seeds to scope nan soil.   

4. Check your ungraded — Check nan conditions of your ungraded utilizing a ungraded trial and adhd amendments arsenic basal to amended it's habitability. We urge nan Luster Leaf 1602 Soil Test Kit ($15, Amazon).

A halfway aerator being utilized to aerate a lawn

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

5. Aerate nan section — Now you want to aerate nan section wherever you scheme to dispersed nan writer seed. This gives nan ungraded a caller lease of life. It will loosen up and rotate nan soil, allowing for amended aerial circulation and nutrients, truthful it’s an important step. 

6. Overseed — Apply nan writer seed by manus aliases utilizing a spreader to areas wherever you want caller growth. Make judge you travel nan dosage instructions according to nan label. If you aerated your lawn, purpose to dispersed nan seeds via nan holes near behind. We urge nan Scotts Turf Builder EdgeGuard Mini Broadcast Spreader ($44, Amazon). 

7. Apply fertilizer — Now your writer seeds are successful place, you will request to springiness them each nan thief they tin get and that includes fertilizer. Apply a fertilizer designed to assistance nan maturation of young grass, specified arsenic Scotts Turf Builder Starter Food for New Grass ($29, Amazon). 

Young writer increasing retired of nan soil

(Image credit: Shutterstock)

8. Water regularly — When writer is young, it is fragile, and it will require changeless moisture to assistance its growth. The ungraded will request to beryllium watered 1-2 times a time to start, though support successful mind you want conditions moist, not saturated. It tin return from 1-3 weeks for writer seeds to germinate, truthful beryllium diligent and proceed to thin to them. Once nan writer reaches 1-2 inches successful height, you tin standard backmost really often you h2o it.  

How often should you overseed nan lawn?

This comes down to what benignant of summertime you’ve had. If heatwaves and droughts person been a predominant occurrence, damaging your section and leaving it exposed to weeds, repairs and overseeding will beryllium needed annually. However, successful astir circumstances, pinch modular summertime temperatures, overseeding will only beryllium needed each fewer years. 

If you’re ever unsure, conscionable cheque nan conditions of your section erstwhile summertime is over. If it looks thin, pinch bare patches of ungraded present and there, overseeding tin amended things.  

Top tips erstwhile overseeding a section    

  • Once your writer seed has been scattered, screen it complete pinch a bladed furniture of mulch aliases compost to protect it from precocious winds arsenic good arsenic immoderate birds. 
  • If dense rainfall is scheduled, clasp disconnected connected overseeding, different this tin lavation your activity away. 
  • Once you’ve mowed your lawn, time off nan writer clippings wherever they dishonesty to people decompose and fertilize it. This is 1 of nan 9 ways you tin reuse writer clippings aft mowing. 
  • Take attraction not to overwater while nan writer is young. This tin lead to guidelines rot wherever nan roots are overexposed to moisture. Always cheque conditions anterior to watering.
  • Only scatter writer seed by manus successful mini spaces. For larger areas a dedicated spreader is recommended to guarantee an moreover application.  

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  • 7 of nan champion writer types to turn — and which to get
  • Grass seed vs sod — what’s champion for your lawn?
  • 5 ways to amended your ungraded for a healthier lawn

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Katie looks aft everything homes-related, from room appliances to farming tools. She besides covers smart location products too, truthful is nan champion constituent of interaction for immoderate family advice! She has tested and reviewed appliances for complete 6 years, truthful she knows what to look for erstwhile uncovering nan best. Her favourite point to trial has to beryllium aerial purifiers, arsenic nan accusation provided and nan quality betwixt performances is extensive. 

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