It is summer time, and many lawns are being sodded. The heat and humidity of summer can present some challenges to the rooting of new sod. Here are some helpful hints.
1. Before you get your new sod: water the ground 1-2 days prior to Installation. This will provide valuable water for the sod, and also cool the soil at bit.
2. Just before you roll out the sod: water the soil lightly. This will cool the soil and prevent heat shock to the short roots of the new sod.
3. After the sod is rolled out: soak the sod with water. Again, this is for cooling and also allowing the sod to make good contact with the soil.
4. Stay off the sod. The sod and soil will be soft, so do not walk on it any more than you must.
5. Water the sod many times a day. Water during the early morning hours: before the sun is shining on you new sod, and again several times a day to keep your sod moist enough to retain moisture without causing too much standing water. Try not to water too late in the evening.
6. Water enough to completely wet the sod and the upper 1 inch of soil. If you pre-wet your soil, and soaked your sod immediately after installation, you will find that you do not have to add as much water on the following days.
7. Watch the color of the sod: green is good; blue-green indicates a water-heat problem is coming in 12-24 hours; yellow-tan means the sod is heat/moisture stressed and will most likely go dormant. Once dormancy begins it will take 5-10 days to recovery. Be patient.
8. Mow the grass when it grows tall enough, 2 ½” to 3”: do not wait. Fertilize only when the lawn has been down for 4-6 weeks.