How to Plant a Lawn in the Fall


Although spring is the ideal time to seed your lawn, it can be done during the fall season as well if it is seeded before any frost. Seeding a yard is less expensive then sod and, when done properly, will provide you with a lush, green, healthy lawn after a little patience and time. The key to seeding your own lawn is to protect the grass seed after applying it.

Step 1

Use the rake or till to loosen the soil about 3 inches deep, removing rocks or dirt clods as you work. The point is to get the soil even and smooth.

Step 2

Sprinkle grass seed over the soil as directed on the seed package. Rake over the applied grass seed to distribute the seed evenly.

Step 3

Sprinkle a layer of peat moss about 1/3-inch thick over the grass seed.

Step 4

Water the newly seeded lawn generously, ideally with an irrigation system. If you do not have an irrigation system, use a lawn sprinkler. Immediately after laying the peat moss, water the grass seed in increments of five minutes until you reach 20 minutes of total watering time. Sporadic watering ensures that the lawn is watered deeply, but won't flood out the seeds. Water the yard twice a day for the first two weeks: once in the morning, and again in the afternoon.

Step 5

Reduce the watering amount and time once the grass seed germinates. Now, water it once a day for a week. The week after that, water it every other day. Once the grass seed is grown, water it deeply about once a week to help establish deep roots. Watering it frequently throughout the week promotes shallow roots, which results in unhealthy grass.

Step 6

Fertilize the lawn four to six weeks after the seeds have sprouted, following the instructions for the climate you live in and the type of grass seed you used for your lawn.

Step 7

Mow the lawn after it grows to 3 inches tall. This is taller then most people let their grass grow, but you want to make sure that the grass is established before cutting any part of it off.

Things You'll Need

  • Grass seed
  • Rake or till
  • Peat moss
  • Water, sprinkler or hose
  • Fertilizer
  • Lawn mower


  • Seeding Your Lawn
  • Planting Grass
Keywords: applying grass seed, planting a lawn, fall landscaping

About this Author

Lauren Wise has more than eight years' experience as a writer, editor, copywriter and columnist. She specializes in food, wine, music and pop culture. Her writing has appeared in various magazines, including "Runway," "A2Z," "Scottsdale Luxury Living" and "True West." Wise holds a Bachelor of Arts in journalism from Arizona State University.