Learn which plants thrive in your Hardiness Zone with our new interactive map!

How to Plant Grass Runners

By Ann Johnson ; Updated September 21, 2017
There are several ways to plant a new lawn.
grass,lawn image by Greg Pickens from Fotolia.com

There are several ways to begin a new lawn, including seed, sod, sprigs and runners. Stolons, also called runners, resemble vines, which grow atop a lawn’s surface. Attached to a runner are grass blades and roots. It is possible to cut runners from one lawn and start an entirely new lawn by planting the runners in prepared soil. Depending on the region, late spring and early fall is often the ideal time for planting runners.

Prepare the soil as you would for any new lawn, which includes tilling the soil some 4 to 5 inches deep, removing root clods and stones, enriching with several inches of peat moss, compressing with a roller, raking to smooth and leveling the area.

Water the soil prior to planting to moisten it. The soil should be moist, not soaking.

Lay the runners on the soil with the node or root side on the soil. Space the runners 1 to 2 feet apart.

Run a stolon roller over the runners to press them into the soil. You can rent a stolon roller from an equipment rental center, and follow the manufacturer’s operating instructions.

Cover with a layer of straw mulch, approximately 1/2 inch deep, to retain moisture. And make sure to keep the soil moist.


Things You Will Need

  • Tiller
  • Peat moss
  • Roller
  • Runners
  • Stolon roller
  • Straw mulch


  • Plant freshly harvested runners.


  • Instructions may vary depending on grass type and region.

About the Author


Ann Johnson has been a freelance writer since 1995. She previously served as the editor of a community magazine in Southern California and was also an active real-estate agent, specializing in commercial and residential properties. She has a Bachelor of Arts in communications from California State University, Fullerton.