What is Overseeding?

perennial ryegrass
Perennial ryegrass

Your lawn may start to look less lush and green over time and may gain a lot from lawn overseeding if done correctly. Overseeding can thicken your grass and keep your lawn green all winter.

Overseeding is the process of planting grass seed directly into an already existing lawn without disturbing the lawn or the soil. It’s a simple method to cover up bare patches, increase turf density, improve the appearance of your lawn and establish improved grass types.

In North Texas, homeowners overseed by putting down a cool-season grass over their warm-season grass.  This is done to hopefully, keep a bright, green color for longer once it starts getting cold.  Ryegrasses are the most suitable to do this with in Texas.

Advantages of overseeding

  • Improves lawn’s appearance– a lawn with thick grass instantly feels cozier, is pleasing to the eye, and feels wonderful underfoot.
  • Reduces erosion- when you overseed your lawn, water and soil stay in place, which helps roots establish and prevent run-off.
  • Makes grass hardier- an older lawn can be improved to tolerate insects, disease, drought, and heavy traffic.
  • Increase thickness- the right timing, seeds, and water will turn an old lawn into a beautiful, thick stretch of green.

Best time to overseed

The best time to overseed your grass is in the early fall. The nights start to get cooler and the days are still warm enough to support growth.

The conditions provide a break from the heat for young seedlings to grow faster. Lawn grasses do well in the fall as the proper soil temperatures promote faster seed germination.

Preparing the lawn to overseed

Test the soil to find out if the pH is off balance or missing key nutrients.

Mow and rake the lawn before overseeding.

Water the lawn to moisten the soil the day before overseeding, so the soil has time to dry a little.

Go over the grass a few times with a core aerator or a manual lawn aerator when the soil is moist.

How to pick the right type of seed

Perform a soil test to test the pH balance. Turf grasses need well-aerated soil with a slightly acidic pH balance of between 6 and 7.0.

Research on seeds to know which varieties will grow best with your soil, climate, and conditions.

Check on local variety performance data to help you with the historical performance of seed types and which varieties have been known to perform well in your area.

Pick your seed type based on your soil test and research.  

Post-seeding irrigation

Start watering right away.  Water lightly 1-4 times throughout the day.  

The seeds need to stay damp, but not become flooded.

Keep watering and be patient. Ryegrass seeds typically germinate within 7-10 days.  This process can happen faster around 3-4 days in ideal conditions.  

Once the seeds have germinated, lawn can be watered less frequently.  Adequate irrigation maintenance is necessary year-round to maintain a lush, green lawn.  

Post-seeding mowing

Do not mow the lawn while the new grass is getting established.  If you mow too soon, the seeds could get blown away by the mower.

Once the seeds have germinated, it is fine to resume your normal mowing schedule. 

Post-seeding fertilization

Nitrogen is the most important nutrient for a strong, attractive strand of grass. Use a high-quality turf fertilizer with high-nitrogen content 4 to 6 weeks after the seed has germinated.

Conclusiongreen lawn

Don’t let bare patches spoil the appearance of your home and yard. Regardless of how you go about it, overseeding is a quick and easy method to improve the health and appearance of your grass.

Call JC’s Landscaping today to set up a regular schedule of lawn maintenance and get that dense, green lawn you’ve dreamt about.

 

 

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