Planting sod provides a quick lawn cover in many landscape designs. Each section of sod consists of numerous mature grass plants. New sod needs sufficient time to establish roots in the underlying soil. Until the roots grow and mature, new sod requires special care to avoid damage to the fragile root systems. New sod may suffer damage during routing care, such as mowing and watering. Correct mowing practices enable the sod to flourish and grow healthy roots.
Wait to Mow
Wait about seven days before mowing your new sod. This provides sufficient time for the sod to begin sending roots into the topsoil.
Use a sharp blade to cut your new sod lawn. Dull lawn mower blades tear the grass blades and pull up roots.
Mow your new sod when it is slightly dry. Wet grass gums up lawn mower blades and reduces the mower's ability to cut cleanly through the blades of grass.
Set your mower to cut only one-third of the length of the blade of grass during a single cutting. For an overgrown lawn requiring a deeper cutting, remove one-third in the first mowing. After a few days, remove a little more to establish the correct height.
Keep your lawn a healthy length. Avoid scalping your new sod by maintaining the grass height at a couple of inches. Very short lawns encourage moisture loss and weaken the blades, creating a welcoming environment for pests and diseases.
Most varieties of grass require mowing approximately once each week. Keep your new sod healthy by mowing on a regular basis.
Allow the grass clippings to remain on the lawn in average to dry climates. These clippings add nutrients to the soil and increase moisture retention. In humid areas, remove these clipping to allow air to reach the soil.
Avoid exposing your new sod to unnecessary traffic. Mow in a pattern to avoid walking over the area numerous times. Keep pets and people of the sod until it shows signs of good root establishment. This may take three to four weeks after installation.