There’s a secret behind achieving a beautiful, lush lawn: over-seed your yard. Landscape professionals know what it is, but many homeowners don’t. Over-seeding—as part of a comprehensive, proactive plan—keeps lawns looking great. Whether you’re tending your first lawn or have years of experience, learning how to over-seed your lawn can improve your results.
Over-seeding is spreading grass seed over an existing lawn. Done right, it’s a straightforward process that gets results. As grasses mature, thinning is normal—especially if you enjoy your lawn and use it often. Over-seeding keeps your lawn competitive and steeped in youth and vigor, without starting over from scratch.
The basics of over-seeding are the same everywhere, but goals and timing vary based on geography and the type of grass grown. For success with over-seeding your lawn, follow this basic guide
Typically homeowners over-seed to correct thin or thinning lawns, but seeding pros over-seed to prevent said thinning. For lawns in warmer regions, over-seeding warm-season grasses with cool-season reinforcements add green color during winter. When warm-season grasses go brown, over-seeding with a premium, cool-season ryegrass, provides a green temporary lawn while your permanent, warm-season grasses are dormant.
Apply seed at label-recommended over-seeding rates, using the lawn spreader that suits the job. A landscaper trick is to apply half in one direction, and the other half at a 90-degree angle to ensure perfect coverage. Use drop or broadcast spreaders for large lawns and handheld spreaders for smaller areas. For small spots, simply seed from your hand. Work when the air is calm, so the seed distributes evenly.
Avoid weed & feed products; the pre-emergent herbicides inhibit seed germination. Starter fertilizer, such as Anderson’s Starter Fertilizer 18-24-12, delivers essential nutrients for new grass. Phosphorus supports vigorous root growth, while nitrogen fuels top growth and greening. Some states and counties restrict phosphorus lawn fertilizers due to environmental concerns regarding runoff, but exceptions may be made for new seedings. Check with your local county extension agent about nutrient application restrictions.
Newly over-seeded lawns need consistent moisture. Keep seed and soil moist with frequent, light watering's twice a day for the first four days; water more heavily every other day for the next five days; then water as needed to prevent wilting. This encourages deep, healthy roots.
Keep your newly revived lawn looking its best with a regular, comprehensive maintenance plan that includes diligent watering, best mowing practices, and proactive over-seeding. A simple weekday lawn maintenance schedule can keep your lawn lush and your weekends free.
For the lawn of your dreams, don’t wait to over-seed until your lawn looks less than its best. Give your lawn the boost it needs, step-by-step or all-in-one. Natures Mulch is here with premium grass seed and lawn care products to help you keep your lawn at its peak.