The Q&A Archives: planting grass seed

Question: I had the sewer line replaced in my house and the front lawn has a four foot wide patch of dirt where the hole was backfilled and runs the length of my lawn. I know nothing about gardening, how do i go about reseeding over the dirt that has now settled. And what kind of seed should i use?

Answer: First, prepare the soil for seeding with the following steps:

Remove all debris and large rocks.

Fill in low spots and level high spots.

Add soil amendments if needed such as mulch or compost. This depends on the type of soil you have. Does the rest of the lawn look healthy? If not, you might want to have a soil test done and use its recommendations. Ammonium phosphate fertilizer (16-20-0) can be added according to package instructions.

Till in the amendments at least 4 to 6 inches deep. Don?t leave them in layers on top of the soil. Rake and level.

Water to settle the soil. Allow the soil to dry for one to three days so that it is workable. Don?t work wet soil, which can damage its structure permanently. It should crumble easily in your hands if it?s workable. Rake and level the surface in preparation to seed.

I suggest you take a sample of your existing lawn to your local Home Depot. Just dig out a small square with a sharp knife or trowel. They can help you "match" it to get the same variety of seed. Good luck!

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