It is crucial that you provide effective lawn care once you have a new lawn.
After installation, watering the sod is the most important activity. It is important to keep soil and sod moist in order to encourage root growth. Also, it is important to keep the soil cool and wet in order to prevent injury. It can take up to 12-18 months for sod to adjust to its new environment.
It can still be used for moderate activity if it is properly installed after about 10 to 14 days. While sod is an excellent product, it must be remembered that it is a living thing and will need to be maintained for many years.
Within 30 minutes of sod installation, you can start watering your sod. Sod is a living plant and needs moisture and ground contact to survive.
Your new lawn should be given at least 12 inch of water each day, or more frequently if necessary. Sod should be kept moist until it becomes firmly rooted (about two weeks). Place a coffee cup on the lawn and water it until the water has dried.
Another way to ensure the sod stays moist is by lifting the corners and making sure that the soil underneath the sod (and the soil on it) are very wet. You won’t be able to walk on a lawn that has not been properly watered.
The amount and frequency of watering will depend on the weather conditions. One or two waterings per day will suffice on hot or windy days (80deg and higher), but it is better to have shorter intervals than longer periods of irrigation.
Avoid watering areas near driveways, sidewalks, and buildings more often as the reflected heat damages the turf. If possible, avoid late-night watering.
It is best to water your lawn in the morning. The lawn requires approximately one inch of water per week after establishment. This can be either from rainfall or combined with watering to keep it healthy and vigorous.
After 10 days, pull on one corner of the sod. If the sod is resistant to pulling or if you see white roots piercing into the soil, it needs to be mowed. Before you mow, let the sod dry enough to ensure that it does not sink into your lawn. It should be safe to mow if you can easily walk on it.
For the first cut, raise your mower 3 inches. Take it slow and carefully turn the sod. You may need to water the lawn daily depending on how hot or windy it is.
Your sod should be ready to go after 2 weeks. In spring and autumn, you may lower your mower height to 2-2 1/2 inches. To allow for more leaf area, raise the mower height to 2 1/2-3 inches in summer heat.
You have received your sod with enough nutrients to get it started. You should wait between 4 and 6 weeks to apply more fertilizer if starter fertilizer was used during sod installation.
Apply no more than 1 pound actual nitrogen to 1000 square feet in one application.
You can apply fertilizer every 4 to 6 weeks throughout the growing season to maintain a green, healthy lawn. To avoid lawn burning, water your lawn 48 hours after fertilizer applications are made.