How to Overseed With Bermuda Grass

Overview

Overseed Bermudagrass every few years to avoid gaps and a sparse appearance. It's normal for grass growth to slow after five or six years and weeds to make their way in. Bermudagrass grows very well in sunny areas with well-drained soil. It is typically grown in tropical, sub-tropical and temperate locations. Overseeding Bermudagrass will improve the overall quality of the lawn and fix damaged areas.

Step 1

Overseed Bermudagrass in the spring or summer when the soil is above 65 degrees Fahrenheit. The best soil temperature for Bermudagrass to germinate is between 75 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. If the soil is warmer than 80 degrees Fahrenheit, take precautions to keep it moist.

Step 2

Cut existing Bermudagrass as short as possible. If you hit soil as you mow, that's fine. Bag the clippings or collect them if there isn't a bag on the lawn mower.

Step 3

Rake the lawn to remove debris such as stones. Leave the soil and grass stubble in place but remove everything else, including accumulated thatch and weeds. Bermudagrass seed needs contact with the soil to develop roots.

Step 4

Loosen the very top of the soil with a rake or rototiller. This will create air pockets for the grass roots to spread.

Step 5

Apply a herbicide to get rid of weeds and unwanted grasses. Growth regulators can also be sprayed to reduce competition. See the instructions on the label for dosage information. You may need to wait before overseeding the grass, or the chemicals will kill the seedlings.

Step 6

Apply 1 pound of Bermudagrass per 1,000 square feet of yard. If the lawn has areas that are completely bare, use the seeding rate for new turf. Spread grass seed with a broadcast spreader if overseeding a large area. Use a hand spreader for small areas.

Step 7

Cover the seed with 1/8 to 1/4 inch of soil to hold it in place and encourage germination. Rake it gently into the very top of the soil. Expect germination to occur within 7 to 10 days, and full coverage 6 to 10 weeks after planting.

Step 8

Keep the seed moist and keep traffic off the lawn until it's established. Water regularly for the first one to three weeks. Once established, cut down on frequency of waterings but perform deep waterings so the moistures gets to the roots.

Step 9

Mow the grass once it reaches 3 inches tall. Cut it to a height 2 1/2 inches.

Things You'll Need

  • Mower
  • Rake
  • Grass seed
  • Mechanical or hand spreader
  • Sprinkler
  • Fertilizer
  • Herbicide

References

  • Yardener: Overseeding Lawns
  • Spring Green: Lawn Seeding Tips
  • Texas A&M University: Mowing
  • Seedland: Bermuda Grass Seed Planting
Keywords: overseed grass, overseed Bermudagrass, plant Bermuda grass

About this Author

Kelly Shetsky has been a broadcast journalist for more than 10 years, researching, writing, producing and reporting daily on many topics. In addition, she writes for several websites, specializing in medical, health and fitness, arts and entertainment, travel and business. Shetsky has a Bachelor of Arts in communications from Marist College.