Your first consideration when planning to grow a new lawn from seed is the choice of grass. The grass you choose to grown will be based on your local weather conditions, the aesthetics of your property and drought hardiness. Consult with neighbors as well as lawn professionals in coming to your decision. Once you have decided on the seed you wish to plant, your next consideration is soil preparation. In fact, aside from your water regimen after your seeds are planted, soil preparation is probably the most important aspect of growing a new lawn from seed. The time of year you sow your new lawn will depend on the type of grass you are planning to grow.
Water your current lawn to encourage the growth of weeds and grass. This will make it easier to kill them when you apply herbicide.
Spray your current lawn with a broad spectrum herbicide seven days after beginning a watering regimen. Do not water for at least 24 hours after spraying. Do not spray if it is windy or if rain is expected within the next 24 hours.
Rake your lawn seven days after spraying with the herbicide, using a hard steel rake in order to remove as much vegetation as possible, as well as any rocks or other debris.
Spread a two-inch-deep layer of organic fertilizer on your lawn using a fertilizer spreader.
Rototill your lawn to a depth of at least 12 inches, working the organic fertilizer into your soil and breaking up the soil.
Use your hard steel rake to level your lawn as well as to remove roots, stones and other debris brought to the surface by the rototiller.
Spread 1/4 inch of organic fertilizer on your lawn with your fertilizer spreader.
Use your seed spreader to cover your lawn with a layer of lawn seed as per the manufacturer's instructions. Generally you will need to sow between one and three pounds of seed per 1,000 square feet, but the amount of seed required varies with the type of seed you choose to plant.
Add another 1/4 inch of organic fertilizer on top of your seeds.
Roll a lawn roller over your lawn to insure a firm contact between your seeds and your fertilizer/soil. Water well using a sprinkler. Keep your new lawn damp but not soggy for at least 21 days. Expect your new lawn to sprout within 7 to 21 days, depending on the type of grass you have planted. Do not mow for at least 21 days after the grass sprouts.