NEW SOD - FESCUE GRASS - Knowledgebase Question

Marietta, Ge
Question by wlpatch
June 28, 2010
Recently, my HOA placed fescue sod in my back yard. Seems that only about 1/3 has taken (green), The rest are bare spots. What should I do to correct bare spots. How often to water, fertilizer, etc. What caused bare spots?

Answer from NGA
June 28, 2010


Sod comes complete with a mature root system and as long as you keep it watered well, the roots should penetrate down into the soil and the sod will establish itself. Dry areas indicate the sod is either not making good contact with the soil (a fault with installation) or that your sprinkler system is missing those areas. Check your sprinkler system first before calling your HOA or the sod installer. Water as you normally do and then dig down into one of the bare spots to make sure the soil is moist below the root system.

Here are some general guidelines for helping your new sod become established: Your lawn should be watered immediately to moisten the soil and the sod. Water thoroughly, providing about an inch of water over the entire lawn. The sod will require consistent moisture for the next 7-10 days to ensure good, even root development. Water the lawn lightly to keep the sod moist at least twice daily; 15-20 minutes is sufficient. Once the sod has begun to "knit" to the soil surface, gradually increase the duration and decrease the frequency of your waterings until you are watering once a week for 45 minutes to an hour (long enough to provide one inch of water). This schedule can be adjusted for the weather, of course, with more frequent applications during the early stages if we experience hot, dry, or windy weather. Less water is needed during periods of rainy or cold weather.

Your new lawn should be fertilized with a slow-release fertilizer 3-4 times per year. The most important application is in early September. A second application is November is the next most important. Sometimes an additional application in October is made for an even higher quality turf. If this application is made, the November application is bumped to December.

Best wishes with your new lawn.

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