Install Your Sod Immediately and Begin Watering!
“Do Not Wait Until the Next Day.”
Sod is perishable and must be installed immediately upon receipt and followed by deep watering. Heat can build up within a roll and cause damage to turf. Most successful sod installations are installed right after delivery to the job site. After rolling, begin irrigation deeply, six inches down into the soil until it’s soggy to walk on.
Week 1 – Keep Sod Wet
It is essential to keep newly installed sod wet the first week. Water heavy the first irrigation cycle to wet the new sod and the soil profile to a depth of four to six inches.
As a general rule, keep sod and soil moist throughout the day. As much as 2 to 6 sprinklings during the day (morning and afternoon) are required until sod begins to root. Adjust for location, sprinklers, and temperature. Once the lawn and soil are thoroughly wet, water 3 to 5 times a day, so the sod never dries out.
Lift a corner of the sod to determine the depth of moisture. The new sod should feel spongy wet the first week. Walking on the sod will not harm it, but if you are sinking in, stay off, so you do not leave depressions.
Week 2 – Continue to Water
The second week is similar to the first week watering three to five times a day but reducing the watering duration if you are experiencing excess runoff or puddling. Keep the new lawn moist during this time as it knits together. If allowed to dry out, new sod will shrink up, turn brown and die.
If adequately watered, the roots of your new sod will penetrate the wet soil faster and root down quicker. At the end of week two, dry up the yard and mow it. Mowing high is least stressful to the new sod.
Never mow off more than one-third of the grass blade. Try cutting back the frequency of irrigations just before the first mow to firm up the soil.
End of Week 2 – First Mowing
Your new lawn will need mowing at the end of week two. Exercise caution the first time you mow so you do not pull up the sod. Set your mower at two to three inches and mow off one-third of the height.
Mow at or above two inches for the first few times. If your new lawn reaches over three and a half inches tall, mow off a third of the length even if it has not been two weeks, and collect the clippings. Step down the height of the cut by mowing every two to three days, lowering the cutting height each time.
Week 3 & 4 – Reduce Water
Week three and week four is a transition period to reduce daily watering cycles and extend the days between watering. Re-adjust your watering clock or timer. Reduce the frequency of waterings gradually after each mowing, while increasing minutes per watering. Deeper, less frequent soakings will help roots grow down deeper and establish more quickly into the soil.
Pull or tug on turf to check rooting. During week three, start reducing watering to 1-3 times per day and skip a day between watering if the lawn is not drying out. By week four, water 1-2 times every other day.
After week four, your new yard should be ready to go 2-3 days between watering unless it is a time of extreme heat and wind. . Fertilize your new sod lawn at one month to continue encouraging rooting and establishment. Use either Master Nursery Master Green Lawn Food or Master Nursery Formula 49.
Sod not rooting?
Most sod varieties will begin to root within 10 to 14 days. Check the watering schedule and adjust to deeper, less frequent soaking. Excessive shade will slow down rooting.
Bluish-grey spots on lawn or footprints show after being walked on
Drought-stressed spots in the lawn. Try increasing minutes per watering and check or adjust sprinkler coverage.
Temporary nuisance, usually growing in compost mixed into the soil at preparation. As waterings get deeper and less often, mushrooms usually dry up and wither away.
Edges turning brown and/or gaps between rolls?
Sod is shrinking or has pulled up at the corners. Due to lack of water! Increase minutes per watering and frequency to minimize gaps. Also, hand watering sod will help shrink gaps. Press down edges with foot after watering.
Our Landscaping Services:
- Artificial Turf Installation
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- Sod Installation
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