Cleaning Up Your Own Backyard

Sod Preparation And Installation Tips For A Successful New Lawn

by Warren Garcia

Installing a new lawn in your yard is a great improvement for your property and the use and enjoyment of your yard, and sod gives you near-instant gratification. Here are some recommendations for a successful sod installation in your yard.

Complete Your Prep Work

Before your sod arrives, you need to look at the installation site and make sure it is completely ready. This may mean installing a sprinkler system to water your sod as soon as you install it, but it should also include preparing the soil. Remove any vegetation growing on the site, including old lawn, weeds, and other vegetation. You can use a non-selective herbicide to effectively remove unwanted weed growth.

You should also till the soil several inches into the ground to loosen the soil. This also allows you to add in any additional fertilizers, compost, or topsoil to your site. If there are large chunks of clay in your soil, remove them along with any large rocks and other debris. Then, smooth the soil level after tilling with a landscape rake or excavation equipment.

Arrange For Delivery

When you are ready to arrange for your sod delivery, you should plan out where you will place your sod on your property. The best option is to place it in the shade of a tree so the sod does not die off from the sun's heat before you can lay it. But if you do not have any trees in your yard because your home is a new construction, for example, you should rent or buy a canopy covering to place your sod delivery for its temporary storage. 

Arrange for the sod to be delivered on the same day you plan to install it. However, if you need to wait a day or two, do your best to keep the sod protected and from dying in the heat. Spray the sod with a hose and keep it in the shade. You don't ever want to keep your sod stored under a tarp covering. Although this option might seem smart to protect the tarp from the sun, it will actually increase the temperature under the tarp and your sod can burn and die quite quickly.

If you have a large property, you can place your sod pallets throughout your yard under available shade. This will make the installation easier, as you won't have to carry the sod rolls too far across your yard. 

Follow up your sod installation by applying water to the sod to ensure it takes root in the soil.