Give Your Lawn a Jump Start on Spring with Dormant Seeding.

Dormant Seeding Can Produce Green Spring Results

 

If you thought there was nothing left to do this year about those bare or thin spots in your lawn, there is one more trick you may want to try – dormant seeding. What is dormant seeding? When the weather gets cold enough to prevent grass seed from germinating, you can add it to areas of your lawn that need a little thickening with Heritage Lawn’s seeding service in Parkville, Overland Park, Kansas City and the other many cities we serve. The advantage of dormant seeding over spring seeding is that it allows the young seedlings to become more established before summer arrives. It basically is like giving the seeds a head start on the spring season.
Contact with the soil is key. Ideally, you want to over seed after the weather has turned cold but before the soil is frozen. If you are over seeding bare areas, make sure to loosen the soil just like you would if you were seeding in the spring. If the areas are small, a hand rake should do the trick. Larger areas may require a power rake or vertical mower. The key is to go over it lightly. You just want to penetrate the top ¼ inch or so, not rototill the area.  This light raking will also remove any thatch or dead grass buildup to reveal the soil. Spread the grass seed like you would in the spring.  The freezing and thawing over the winter will work the seeds into the soil. Water the area if it is not moist and then just go back into your warm house and forget about it.  When the soil starts to warm next spring, your grass will start to grow as early as possible.  If we have a dry spring you will have to water once the seed starts to germinate but the nice thing about spring watering is you only have to water one time per day not three times per day like you would in August.  Plus, there is a better chance that it will rain.
You may want to spread some starter fertilizer in the spring to encourage new growth, but be careful with chemicals on tender new grass. Crabgrass preventers and broadleaf herbicides will damage the establishment of the grass.  Do not apply these until the new grass has been mowed. Be sure to read and follow all label instructions before applying any pesticide to new seedlings.  Here’s to a thicker, healthier lawn come spring!