How to Lay Sod

Discussion in 'After Hours Lounge (Off Topic)' started by Drew Bethel, May 12, 2005.

  1. Drew Bethel

    Drew Bethel Screenwriter

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    I would appreciate any feedback on tips, guides, tools you found helpful, and web links on the best way to lay sod. As some of you may recall, I had two dogs last year and through the winter they pretty much destroyed 50% of my back yard. We have since re-homed the female dog so the one dog won't be much of an issue.

    I've tried seeding but I'm getting growth in patches and I've reached my boiling point. So, I've decided to sod and be done with this damn project. I plan to pull up the remaining grass and weeds and start from scratch. There is some concrete in the yard but basically I will be sodding to big areas, 16X30 and 23X23. Thanks for any input.
     
  2. Jon Bell

    Jon Bell Stunt Coordinator

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    Green side up!
     
  3. Drew Bethel

    Drew Bethel Screenwriter

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    [​IMG]
     
  4. John Alvarez

    John Alvarez Screenwriter

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    What type of grass?
     
  5. Dave Poehlman

    Dave Poehlman Producer

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    The secret to seeding or sodding is water... lots and lots of water!I seeded my new yard last summer and had a $300+ water bill. But my grass looks great. [​IMG]

    Oh.. I don't know if this applies to sod, but newly seeded lawns can be fertilized every 30 days or so for the first few months. No weed killer.. just fertilizer.

    Mow it as soon as it's high enough to mow and mow it as high as your mower will go. Keeping the blades long will help retain moisture in the soil and mowing often will promote root growth.
     
  6. Drew Bethel

    Drew Bethel Screenwriter

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    Kentucky blue...
     
  7. Joe Szott

    Joe Szott Screenwriter

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    OK, here's your sodding guide (
     
  8. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    what happens if you cut it too short? i think i just did this in my new house and my lawn is significantly paler then the neighbors. i mean, my yard is the only one that looks like crap! [​IMG] did someone mention i could "over fetilize" at this stage? the lawn is actually about a month old now...
     
  9. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    oh yeah, when you lay the sod, lay them in a "brick" pattern. you don't want any seams matching up...
     
  10. Dave Poehlman

    Dave Poehlman Producer

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    I'm not sure about sod... but seedlings are expending all of their energy trying to grow, so it's hard to over-fertilize a young lawn. Sod is more established... so, I suppose you could over-fertilize there.

    IIRC, my landscaper said once I've mowed 2-3 times (on my seeded lawn, mind you), I could start fertilizing every 30 days or so. I could always tell when it needed fertilizer because it would start to look a lighter shade of green.

    I'd say Ted, if you've cut it too short... water it.
     
  11. Drew Bethel

    Drew Bethel Screenwriter

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    Great tips. I was considering using peat moss but since Joe gave it such a strong recommendation I will defintely pick up a truck load fron Fleet Farm.
     
  12. Ted Lee

    Ted Lee Lead Actor

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    will do...i'm gonna run it manually a couple of times a day. i may fire up the water bill, but looking at my lawn is driving me crazy.

    i'm also thinking about asking my gardener (i just hired one...) to lay down some sulphite (sp?)...a friend told me he did that to his lawn and he has the greenest one on the block now. he said the only issue is you have to keep it wet...or it'll burn the grass.

    having a nice lawn has always been a source of pride for me...but i guess i just don't have a green thumb. [​IMG]
     
  13. MarkMel

    MarkMel Screenwriter

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    If you want lawn information go to the pros - www.lawnsite.com

    Read away on the forums, there is tons of info there written by those that do the work.

    I am not a landscaper but I do read the forum, picked up tons of tips.

    Just don't post "I'm going to install sod myself, how should I do it?"

    You'll get varying responses, from "hire someone" to much more unfriendly.

    There's enough already posted that I have only had to ask one question in my many searches for info.
     
  14. Drew Bethel

    Drew Bethel Screenwriter

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  15. Joe Szott

    Joe Szott Screenwriter

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    Ted - Yes, you can definitely over mow your lawn. If you think you've done this, just raise the blades a bit from now on (give it a week off as well) and see if it improves. If you think you've over fertilized, just drench the sodded area in water to 'leech' out some of the nitrogen.

    Drew - The reason I'm so gung-ho for peat moss is that it does more than one thing at once. It is spongy and retains water, so that helps the grass roots quite a bit, and it degrades slowly into food for the grass, so it's effectively a slow burn fertilizer. You can add more fertilizer (miracle gro is good stuff) if you wish, but the peat moss is the secret ingredient from having a good sod experience and a great one. I've done it both ways, the peat moss rototilled into the soil 3-5" deep is the way to go [​IMG]
     
  16. Mort Corey

    Mort Corey Supporting Actor

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    Sufate of Ammonia will make it green (and burn if not watered) but it's almost pure nitrogen and doesn't do anything for the root structure.

    The "work" in laying sod is in the prep like Joe explained...it's also the basis for success....kinda like painting in that respect. When you do get ready to mow, make sure you've got a nice sharp blade. On a rotary mower, with weekly mowing, the blade should be sharpened at least twice a year (more is better) and on a reel mower once a year works.

    Mort (who wishes he had a gardner like Ted)
     
  17. Jon_Are

    Jon_Are Cinematographer

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    Alright, I'm confused...


    ...who's this 'Sod' chick?


    Jon
     
  18. David McGough

    David McGough Second Unit

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    you can checkerboard it.... Leave spaces between 2 pecies.
    side by side but have seams in middle. Use sand as a filler
    water or copus water is even better
     
  19. todbnla

    todbnla Screenwriter

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    Also, Scotts makes a "starter" fertilizer which I just used when we layed some new sod. I would not use regular fertilizer for at least 3-6 months if you live in a very hot climate like we do unless you water every day via an irrigation system, its too easy to burn/kill the new grass.
    Another thing no one here mentioned, if you lay it your self, it comes two ways I know of: on a skid/pallet in small squares or, on a roll. The squares on a skid are the only ones you can put down, be prepared for major back pains the next day, laying sod is no fun! [​IMG]


    [​IMG]
    Been there, done that! :b
     
  20. Drew Bethel

    Drew Bethel Screenwriter

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    It has been raining here for the last few days and I was thinking of renting the rotatiller this weekend. Should I wait until it's a little drier to use the tiller?
     

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