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questions about planting grass seed

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I'm planning on planting some grass seed and I have some questions about things I'm not too clear on.#1) what does it mean to cultivate soil?#2) what's the best way to spread the seeds if you're doing it by hand?#3) what's the best way to cover the soil if I don't have any equipment to do it?can i use a regular rake?or some other handy household item?#4) I'm supposed to lightly stamp or roll the seeded area after i plant the seeds.....what can i use to do this if i don't have tools for this purpose?#50 and finally does anyone have some tried and true advice on planting grass seed-all tips are helpful.....,.I have a mixture that i ordered through the mail-it has like 7 different kinds of seed or so.....PLEASE HELP!!!!! I'm new at this growing stuff and I would really love to have some grass for my son to play in instead of all this dirt and flying bugs!



My tips would be (I'm no expert, but have had some success this year and last year turning rough ground to lawn and veg patch to path.)

1) I think they mean weed the soil, break it up and rake it so that its flat but not compacted. When I have turned some mud / plant areas to grass I've weeded, removed any stones, made it smooth, then walked over the whole area like heel to heel in heavy boots so that any voids or air pockets are squashed out. Then re-rake. If the area is not smooth or flat you may have to repeat this process till you are happy with the surface visually. That way you should avoid an uneven surface, as the soil settles in. If the area is already flat and without voids or dips, then make sure the top surface is well raked/broken up so that the new grass can establish roots. You want a firm soil area but that is broken up at the surface so the seeds have a good environment to germinate in.

2) I would lightly spray / wet the soil first as this darkens it. Make sure your seend is well mixed if it has different types. Then hand scatter the seed which should show up better against the dark soil so you can see where you have thrown. Be careful of wind direction, but other than that just go for it, grab an fist full and throw across you body and outwards. I opt for more the merrier, but obviously you are aiming for an even distrubition of seed over the soil, so that its not 'patchy' when it grows. Also don't cake/blanket the soil with seed, as the seed needs space and soil.

3) Back and forth lightly rake the seed and soil so that its partially covered / all mixed up soil and seed. Back and forth should avoid you pulling all the seed to one place. You want it so that the seed can still get some sun light, but not blow away.

4) Hmm. I haven't stamped or rolled the area. If you had a large tree log you could roll that, but probably alot of hard work. To my mind heel to heel walking to flatten the area and then raking before planting should have same effect? I'm sure others will have ideas.

The real 4) or 5) is to water the area once the seed is scattered and lightly covered / surface mixed with soil. And then regularly water or get it rained on so that you get good germination until the grass is well established.

Avoid cutting the grass as long as possible, so that you don't damage the seedlings, e.g. let if grow long in the first place. Helps if you don't walk on it too much either in the first few days and weeks.

Be careful about weed killing lawn treatments while the grass is still young, e.g. avoid them.

I hope you son enjoys watching it grow and playing on it!

15 May, 2008



15 May, 2008


When we have seeded, we find we have to cover the ground with chicken wire for a while until the seeds have germinated, or else the birds swoop down and have a feast!

15 May, 2008


As far as equipment for scattering the seed goes I've found that I have more success doing it by hand then with a distributor anyway.

If your looking for something cheap and handy to tamp down the soil you might try a smallish board. Try drilling two holes on either side and then stringing a bit of rope through to make handles. You can put it in front of you and step on it as you go.

17 May, 2008

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