How to Grow Grass in a Sand Box


In homes with children, parents often build sandboxes instead of planting gardens or green back yards to create a play space that is both fun and stimulating. But once children grow up and leave the sandbox behind, parents are left with a patch of ground that is difficult to grow plants in. With careful attention and soil amendments, you can reclaim that patch of ground and plant hardy grasses that grow well in sandy soil.

Step 1

Spread a volume of organic amendments that are equal to the volume of sand over the sand box. Adding an equal volume of soil amendments to the sand makes a significant change to the soil structure, according to Oregon State University. For example, if your sand box is 4 inches deep, spread a 4 inch layer of amendments over the sand. Good soil amendments for sand include peat moss and compost. Peat moss will help to hold moisture into the sandy soil, while compost will provide nutrients that will help grass grow in the soil.

Step 2

Mix the amendments thoroughly into the soil using a rake, shovel and garden spade.

Step 3

Water the soil 24 hours before planting grass seed.

Step 4

Rake the soil to create furrows for grass seed.

Step 5

Spread grass seed over the soil. Good grass for sand boxes in warmer climates, such as the southern U.S., include Bermuda grass and zoysia. Ryegrass works well in cooler climates.

Step 6

Water the grass seed lightly twice daily to keep the soil damp. Do not allow the soil to become soggy. Gradually decrease the water once the seeds sprout until you water only once weekly with 1 inch of water per 1 inch of soil. Use a rain gauge to measure how much water you use.

Things You'll Need

  • Peat moss
  • Compost
  • Rake
  • Spade
  • Shovel
  • Sprinkler
  • Garden hose
  • Rain gauge
  • Grass seed


  • Oregon State University: Improving Garden Soil
  • University of Minnesota Extension: Lawn Renovation
  • Colorado State University: Choosing a Soil Amendment

Who Can Help

  • Texas A&M University: Bermudagrass
Keywords: plant grass sand, lawn sand box, repurposing sand boxes

About this Author

Tracy S. Morris has been a freelance writer since 2000. She has published two novels and numerous online articles. Her work has appeared in national magazines and newspapers, including "Ferrets," "CatFancy," "Lexington Herald Leader" and "The Tulsa World."