(NC)—Fall does what no other season can do. Its warm, sunny days and cool, dewy nights provide ideal conditions for growing new grass and developing your lawn’s source of strength: a deep and dense root system.
So the most successful seeding time is right around Labour Day, gardening experts say. Seeding two weeks before, or after, this easy-to-remember holiday will give your new seedlings time to build strong roots. In fact, ‘overseeding’ with grass seed and fertilizer in the fall can make your lawn up to 49 percent thicker next spring, making it better able to resist weeds and summer stresses.
Choose the right seed
“Most Canadian lawns are a blend of perennial ryegrass, Kentucky Bluegrass and fescues, but not all grass seed is created equal,” says Scott Macdonald at Scotts Canada, a leading company in this field. “Top-quality blends improve the results exponentially and can make the entire process much easier. Our specially formulated Scotts Pure Premium Grass Seed, for example, delivers quick coverage and a long-lasting lawn in a variety of conditions.”
Scotts’ experts say that the amount of sun exposure is the most important determinant in choosing the right product blend for your lawn. A “sun and shade” mix is the best all-purpose seed, while other mixes labeled sunny, shady, heat and drought, are available for those specific conditions.
How to overseed
Mow grass on the lowest setting, and loosen the top 6 mm (1/4 inch) of soil in bare or thin areas. Add 6 mm (1/4 inch) of guaranteed “weed free” lawn soil to the area. Distribute the seed evenly. For best results, use a hand-held or a rotary spreader. Apply a “seed starter” fertilizer to increase seeding success and then water thoroughly. Remember, watering is crucial to seed germination. Keep the top 1 cm (1/2 inch) of soil damp by watering daily until all seedlings are up and the lawn is established.