Overseeding is an excellent way to thicken up thin turf, repair minor damage, and help stressed turf recover more quickly. It is also an opportunity to introduce higher quality grass types which can be more draught, insect and disease resistant.
Start with the best grass seed available – Ours, blended for Ottawa lawns.
Not all grass seed is created equal. Some varieties are much better than others. Some are more draught resistant, some more disease resistant and some are more insect resistant. New cultivars are being developed all the time. We use a blend here at Green Unlimited that has been developed for Ottawa’s tough summers, so your lawn will always look its best.
Water often when the seed starts to germinate
When establishing new sod or when new seed starts to germinate it is important to not let them dry out – a grass seed is about the size of this “!”. There isn’t enough energy in that little seed to carry it through a dry spell, so you need to water it every day. The roots are also not deep on a little seedling at this point either, so a deep watering is a waste of $$. The best thing to do is water once or even twice a day during this early stage and as the sod and/or seed become more established move from more frequent shallow watering into a schedule of less frequent and longer watering durations. This will keep them going early on and then shift them to produce deeper rooting.
Protect the seed once it’s been spread
Covering the grass seed with a layer of compost will protect it from birds and from drying out too quickly between watering.
Feed the Seed
There are specialty fertilizers that are formulated to give new germinating grass plants just what they need to develop strong roots and establish quickly. Make sure you include these when you’re having seeding done to give those little guys the best fighting chance you can.
Why Overseed an already good lawn?
Overseeding is a perfect opportunity for you to introduce higher quality grass types to your lawn that was perhaps established with more common varieties commonly found in sod and most garden centre seed blends. These new grass types can make your lawn more disease resistant and they can also make it taste bad for insects feeding on it. They can also make your lawn more draught and heat resistant as well. If you’re renovating a damaged section of lawn, then overseed.
When should Overseeding be done?
If you’re renovating a damaged section of lawn then over-seed at any time. If you think it might be hot or dry, then be sure to add a layer of compost on top of the seed and be ready to water a bit more diligently. If you are simply overseeding as a best practice, then put the seed down in early August so it germinates in early September and has a nice cool period to establish before the frost comes.