According to the University of Rhode Island, installing turf grass is a great way to quickly establish a yard. Picking the right turf grass for your climate, plant hardiness zone and soil's draining abilities is essential for the success of your yard. Turf comes in a mixture of either several types of grasses or is one turf type. Grasses are broken up into two categories: Cool season and warm season types. Cool season grass is commonly grown in northern regions of the United States, while warm season grass types are popular in the south.
Dig ten 6-inch holes in your yard in various locations. Collect 1/2 cup of soil from the bottom of the holes and pour into a bucket. Sift through the soil and remove any rocks or vegetative matter. Pour 1/2 cup of soil into a container and mail it to your local cooperative extension office for a soil pH test. Soil testing is imperative when installing turf, because turf grass must be grown in its correct pH range in order to survive. Amend the soil with limestone for soil that is too acidic or sulfur for alkaline soil based on the results.
Remove all vegetation on the lawn area by digging up old grass, weeds and unwanted plants. Burn or throw away the vegetation.
Till the yard to break up the first 6 inches of soil. Add soil to areas that are uneven. You want the most even yard as possible before turf installation.
Apply a fertilizer with a nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium amount of 1-2-1. Push the fertilizer spreader back and forth across the lawn.
Water the soil with a mist of water. Install the turf or sod around the perimeters of the yard and work your way in. Butt the edges of the sod pieces, so that there is little room between each piece. Cut pieces of sod with a masonry trowel.
Roll a lawn roller across your sod for good sod-to-soil contact. Water the soil so that it is moist but not saturated.