Seeding Your Lawn in the Winter?!?

If you have a cool season grass type in your lawn then it is generally best to seed your lawn in the fall.  Fall is when cool season grasses naturally germinate and seeding at this time allows for the best possible outcome.  Many argue that the spring time is best for seeding, which is not entirely false.  The spring is the second best time to seed your lawn using a cool season grass.  The main reason why fall is a more advantageous time to seed is because of the soil temperature   Since the soil is still warm from the summer, grass seed germinates much faster than in cooler soil still warming up from winter frost.


Why would we be discussing seeding your lawn in the winter if the fall has already past?


Many times after  there are still weak spots from traffic, birds, and nature.  Additionally, leaves fall after it is best to seed, so you may rake out some new grass trying to keep your lawn clear of leaves.  That is how we find ourselves discussing “dormant seeding” or seeding in the winter time.  Dormant seeding seems to work best with a little bit of snow on the ground to help the seed and moisture leach into the ground.  This will result in a thicker lawn in the spring.  Of course the more seed you apply to your lawn the thicker it will be, so if you seed in the fall, seed in the winter, and seed in the spring, the weak spots in your lawn should be less prevalent.   As long as you have been watering.  Moisture is very key in the germination of seed.  Too much moisture and your seed will flow out of place, either off the property or to low areas, causing uneven distribution of grass.  Not enough moisture and the seed will either not germinate or baby grass will be malnourished for proper growth.  By placing seed in the snow, usually best to have about 1-2 inches of accumulation, the soil will naturally absorb both the seed and moisture.  Even if the temperature does not drop to melt the snow for some time the seed will remain frozen preventing early germination.

Adding an additional round of seeding in the winter, where the seed stays frozen to prevent early germination and additional moisture is stored in the ground, can be very beneficial to your lawn.  This is not the best time to seed your lawn, but it is a good time to recover weak spots.  Of course you can seed numerous times per year and still not have a thick healthy lawn with out a proper nutrition and maintenance plan.  Frequent mowing and fertilization applications can go a long way in maintaining an attractive property.

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