Moving into a new house involves more than just the house itself; it involves the surrounding land as well. So, we’ve included some benefits and disadvantages of both sod and seed to help you choose the best path for your grass and, in turn, your curb appeal.
If you’re moving into a home with grass, check to see how it’s doing. If your lawn is 40% or fewer weeds, you can probably salvage it with some tender loving care. If your lawn consists of more than 40% weeds or a lot of struggling/dead grass, you might want to consider starting from scratch.
The first step before planting or placing any grass is testing your soil. Testing for the pH of your dirt will help you find the best fertilizer and “care plan” for your lawn’s specific needs.
Deciding between sod and seed is a big choice, but we’d suggest not deciding on sod just because you’re afraid of seeds. It has some amazing benefits and looks stunning, which should not be completely ignored.
Sod has its advantages. You get instant results as far as appearance goes: your lawn looks impeccable as soon as it’s laid. Strong roots only take two or three weeks to grow, which means you can walk and play on it quickly. Sod can be planted anywhere within the growing season, and weeds are limited in the beginning.
That being said, it costs a lot more upfront, requires proper installation (which could mean big bucks to hire a professional), it might not transplant well (especially if your lawn conditions are different than the area it was originally grown), it must be transplanted within 24 hours of being cut, and it heavily restricts your grass choices (which means your grass might not suit your landscape and weather as well as seed).
Seeds cost less upfront, don’t require professionals to plant, and develop healthy root systems without any interruption. Choosing to seed also significantly expands your grass choices; you can choose seeds to match your soil, light, landscape, and your environmental values.
Unfortunately, they do require a lot of maintenance in the beginning: they need a lot of monitoring and attention and water and are vulnerable to weeds when first planted. Seeded lawns take longer to withstand foot traffic--usually 10 to 12 weeks. There is a potential for erosion in very rainy areas before roots can establish, and it takes about a season to fully mature.
The best part is that whatever you choose can mirror exactly what you’re looking for in your yard, whether it be its cost, appearance, maintenance, or eco-friendliness. We wish you the best of luck in your grass adventures!