Fall is For Overseeding

patchy lawn

If you’re like us, you appreciate a great-looking lawn surrounding your beautiful home. Maintaining that lawn takes a lot of work, and the steps you take in the fall can help ensure you’re greeted by a lush, green lawn next year.

If you’ve already followed our advice on the benefits of aerating your lawn, the next step to fall lawn care is overseeding. Fall is the perfect time for overseeding your lawn if you’re looking to repair thin or bare areas. Overseeding in the fall is preferred for several reasons, including:

  • There are shorter, milder temperature days
  • Seed better retains moisture and avoids drying out
  • There is less competition from weeds

So how do I overseed?

If you’re interested in overseeding but not sure where to start, we’ve put together a quick reference guide below. Follow this guide to enjoy a perfectly overseeded lawn next spring.

  1. Select the best grass seed for your area. An experienced lawn and garden expert will be able to recommend the best seed for you. Here in PA, that will likely be a cool season grass that is disease, insect, and drought resistant.
  2. Mow your lawn, then rake and loosen the soil. Make sure your grass is cut short to allow the seed to reach the soil. The secret to growing grass from seed is maximum seed-to-soil contact, and mowing your lawn allows the seed to settle into the soil instead of resting on top of your lawn. Use a leaf or overseeder rake to gently loosen the top ¼ inch of soil wherever you may have bare spots, but be sure not to rip out your existing grass.
  3. Level your lawn. If you notice areas of your lawn that consistently collect water, level these areas out. Otherwise the flowing water will wash away your seed, or it will float in the puddle and decrease your seed-to-soil contact.
  4. Plant seed & fertilize. For small areas, spread the seed evenly with a hand spreader. For larger areas, use a broadcast spreader, applying half in one direction and the other half in the opposite direction. A fertilizer will help the seeds germinate and establish quickly, minimizing your risk of overseeding failure.
  5. Water. If your grass seed dries out, it dies. Water regularly for the first few weeks, and then cut back once the grass reaches two inches high. If the area starts to look soggy or saturated, you’re watering too much; simply cut back your watering if this is the case.

If you prefer to leave the lawn work to the professionals, Hively would love to help you get your lawn looking great. Contact us today about our lawn care services at 717-292-5696 and we’ll have your lawn in tip-top shape in no time!