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How to Use Peat Moss Under Sod

Although peat moss doesn't provide nutrients or fertilize sod, it does provide some important benefits for your yard, such as retaining moisture and nutrients, loosening the soil to promote root growth and preventing soil compaction as the lawn grows. Sod is often grown on peat moss, and working it into the soil before laying the sod helps give your new lawn a good start. It can also reduce water use in the long run, saving both time, money and the environment.

Till the area you plan to plant, making at least two passes across the area with the tiller to break up the soil. The tiller should be set to a depth of about six inches.

Spread the peat moss across the freshly tilled planting area. It should be spread about one- to one-and-a-half-inch thick. Use a rake if necessary to spread the peat moss evenly.

Till the peat moss into the soil. You will probably need to make three or four passes with the tiller to mix the peat moss and soil evenly and properly prepare the soil for planting.

Rake the soil and peat moss mixture until it is even. Move excess soil from one area to another if necessary to make the planting area level.

Lay the sod, using peat moss to fill in any cracks between pieces. As the sod grows together, the peat moss will be pushed to the bottom, providing additional moisture and nutrient retention.

Peat Moss

Peat moss is a common ingredient in potting soil. Trees and shrubs add texture and dimension to a yard without requiring much maintenance. The fluffy texture of the peat moss helps add body to sandy soils, while its lightweight consistency helps loosen up dense clay soil so the tree or shrub's roots get enough air. Peat moss also absorbs and holds water so the plants receive adequate moisture when re-planted. For the best transplanting results, combine 1 part peat moss with 2 parts soil and surround the tree or shrub's root ball. But for the most effective compost, add peat moss to the mix. If you notice a strong odor from your compost pile, adding a layer of peat moss on top can also help cut back on the smell.


Blend in other soil amendments as needed by adding them one at a time following each pass of the rototiller.


Don't lay sod on top of peat moss that hasn't been blended into the soil. It is likely to settle unevenly, leaving a lawn with a bumpy, uneven look.

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