How to establish a lawn by seed | Yates Lawn Experts

A lawn can be easy to care for but remember it’s made up of living plants and, as with all living things, their needs must be considered. Choose a grass that is suitable for your climate and conditions. Most grasses are sun-loving plants. In very shaded areas it may be better to select a non-grass ground cover.
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How to sow a lawn by seed

  • The best time to sow a new lawn is during the mild conditions of early to mid spring and early to mid autumn. However with care a new lawn can be sown throughout the year as long as the soil temperature is warm enough.
  • Spray the entire area with a non-selective herbicide such as Yates Zero Weedkiller. This will kill the existing grass as well as any weeds.
  • Leave the sprayed area for 2 weeks, to allow all the weeds and grass to die.
  • Measure the area so you can work out the amount of lawn seed and starter fertiliser you will need.
  • Before sowing lawn seed, it’s important to prepare the soil first, to give the new lawn the best possible start.  If the soil is uneven it’s a great opportunity to apply some top dressing to level out the surface. If the soil is hard and compacted, loosen the surface with a rake to create a softer surface for the lawn seed to germinate in.
  • Once the area has loose soil and is even, lightly rake the area one way to create shallow furrows. Mix the required amount of lawn seed with a Starter Fertiliser. This makes it much easier to spread out the lawn seed, adds valuable organic matter to the soil and provides the new grass seedlings with gentle slow release nutrients as they establish.
  • Spread the mix evenly over the area, either by hand or with a spreader, and then ‘cross rake’ (rake in the opposite direction to the first raking). Water the area gently and thoroughly, so that the top soil is moist.
  • It’s very important to keep the top 1cm of soil moist for the first 2 – 3 weeks while the grass establishes. This may require watering several times a day. The most common reason for a newly sown lawn not being successful is lack of moisture during the germination and establishment phase. 
  • Minimise foot and pet traffic on the new lawn area until it is well established.


Caring for your lawn

Fertilising Lawn

Regular light fertilising during the growing season is better than infrequent, heavy fertilising. Use a correctly balanced fertiliser (such as Yates Lawn Fertiliser). Yates Dynamic Lifter Concentrated Lawn Food is an organic based concentrated lawn fertiliser that provides dual benefits of fast acting nutrients and slow release organics which mean you feed more lawn using less. Yates Dynamic Lifter Organic Lawn Food is an organic fertiliser that gently feeds all lawn types and improves the structure and moisture retention of the soil. Yates Buffalo Pro Controlled Release Fertiliser feeds & greens for 4 months and is ideal for buffalo lawns but suitable for all lawn types.

Mowing Lawn

With established lawns, cut warm season grasses to 2.5 cm and cool season grasses to 5 cm. Cut as frequently as possible and remove as little growth as possible.

Never mow grass too low or ‘scalp’ the grass. Grasses need their leaves to make food for the plant and to shade the root system. Remove grass clippings or use a mulching mower.

Watering Lawn

Some lawns require a large amount of watering so, depending on the situation, other ground covers may be more appropriate.

Couch is the most drought tolerant grass. Other warm season grasses such as kikuyu, buffalo, carpet grass and Queensland blue couch are reasonably drought tolerant. As a rule, cool season grasses need more water, although turf type tall fescue is reasonably drought tolerant once established.

Water in the morning rather than the evening and give thorough less frequent soakings rather than short, frequent waterings. Don’t allow surface runoff.

Yates Lawn Experts

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