The Best Way To Overseed and Grow Grass In The Summer HeatGreenhouse to Garden
This year has been an absolute scorcher and the summer heat is now causing trouble for many of our lawns. In most local municipalities water bans are often in effect during the summer months to help ensure that our water usage does not have any effect on the water treatment plants as well as on firefighting infrastructure (hydrants).
With lots of heat and the reduced water that we can apply to lawns some of us will experience dull and dry grass and in some cases burnt spots. Now, when it comes to reviving grass this is usually no problem. Grass can usually tolerate dry spells and up to a few hot weeks without water. But, there are some times when grass is gone for good and no amount of water will bring it back.
In these situations, your only option is to plant new grass seed. This is easier said than done especially in the summer months. Most people apply grass seed in the fall when the temperature is around 10-20 degrees and the ground is usually a bit more saturated. But, if you can’t wait that long, there is a way to plant grass from seed in the mid of summer.
What you will need are the following items:
- Premium coated grass seed;
- Peat moss or a growing medium;
- Fan Rake
- Bucket or wheelbarrow
Over the years we have been tasked with repairing bare spots or thickening up lawns in the summer months and this is how we ensure the best possibility of seed germination and growth.
Dump your peat moss into a bucket or wheelbarrow and then break the larger chunks up. Peat is a great type of growing medium which is amazing at retaining moisture and ensuring that the grass seed does not dry out compared to other types of soils.
Pour your premium coated grass seed into the peat and mix them together. In fall and spring seeding, I do not use coated seeds, but during summer seeding I only use coated seeds. Coated seeds are coated in a water absorbent shell which usually contains a starter fertilizer. These two provisions ensure that the grass seed remains moist and fed during the germination process. They also provide the grass seedling with a fighting chance once they sprout and are faced with the heat and sunshine.
Tip: We always use double the amount of seed based on what the bag instructs.
Once you have mixed your premium coated grass seed and peat you will want to use it to fill in any bare patches or you may use it as a grass top dressing and evenly spread it out across your lawn. Once done, take your fan rake and rake over the surface on the ground, ensuring that the grass seed and peat are sitting on the soil ben and not on top of existing grass blades.
Step 4: This is the most important step. Watering is key to ensure germination and grass growth. For the first two weeks you will be required to water your grass 2 times per day. These should be short and roughly 5-10 minutes in duration. The goal is to ensure a continuously damp but not flooded soil base. After 2 weeks, you can return to your regular watering schedule (water deep every other day – 15 to 20 min).
After 2-3 weeks you should have new grass that is around 3-4 inches in height…. If you followed the above instructions. It would be at this time that you can begin walking on these areas and mowing more frequently.
Overall growing new grass in the summer in cooler climate areas such as most of Canada and the northern states is not a super hard thing to do. The key is to have good soil and seed contact, high quality seeds, and continuous water. To also help, try not to walk on the grass or mow it for at least 2 weeks. Mowing low before you begin this process will also help!
If you have any questions or any comments please feel free to let us know. At Greenhouse to Garden we specialize in the landscape trade and provide advice and landscaping services to all across the Greater Toronto Area, and Ontario.
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