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Tools Needed to Plant Grass Seed

Whether you have a small yard or many acres, if you desire to plant grass seeds, there are few basic tools needed to successfully complete the task. Planting grass seeds is one of the simplest gardening tasks that homeowners can undertake, and once the seeds begin to sprout, it is also one of the most rewarding.

Spreader

Spreaders come in two varieties: a hand caster and a wheeled spreader. A hand caster is ideal for spreading seed in a small area. A wheeled spreader casts grass seeds by pushing the tool across a designated area. Wheeled spreaders are good for large yards and provide the quickest way to spread grass seed. As an alternative to using either a hand caster or a wheeled spreader, grass seed can also be cast manually by hand.

Landscape Rake

A landscape rake is used to lightly rake the seeds into the soil once they have been spread. Landscape rakes are designed with a wide head especially for the purpose of spreading.

Lawn Roller

A lawn roller is used to roll the grass seeds, allowing them to make good soil contact for germination. Be sure the lawn roller is empty of water before rolling the seeds. (An empty lawn roller is lighter to maneuver.)

Garden Hose with Nozzle

Use a garden hose, with a nozzle in the mist setting, to water the grass seeds at least two times a day for the first three to four weeks after planting the seeds. It is important to only lightly water the grass seeds, as over-watering may lead to pooling in some areas or even cause some seeds to be washed away and create uneven growth in some areas of the lawn.

Grass Goes To Seed?

When you don't mow your grass for a while, you might see the blades develop seed heads. Some grass propagates well from seed, but others have sterile seeds that won't help you fill in bald spots in your lawn. Most grass varieties must grow fairly tall to develop seed -- some up to nearly a foot high. Failing to mow your lawn all summer might not make your neighbors very happy, and you could violate homeowner's association covenants. Some grasses, such as St. Augustine (Stenotaphrum secundatum), seed without growing very tall, but the seeds are usually not viable. St. Augustine grass grows best in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 8 through 10. If you let it grow tall enough to seed, it pulls energy away from runners to help support the larger blades and seed production. Many of the grass types seeded or sodded into lawns are hybrid varieties, which can create a problem if you let your grass grow until seed heads develop. When the seeds mature and germinate, the seeds could become grass that's completely different from the hybrid variety in the rest of your lawn. Letting your grass grow tall enough to go to seed means you must mow it in stages.

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