Top Five Sod Laying Tips

planted pot decorator pot greenstakes sodding 001 225x300 Top Five Sod Laying Tips

There is nothing better than a green lawn in the fall! Whether you are a new homeowner laying sod for the first time DIY style, or simply patching holes in your yard from the phone companies’ most recent digging site, there are a few tips to know to make your sod laying experience easier, and more successful.


  1. Prepare the bare spot for sod. If you are laying sod in an area that is sandwiched between healthy sections of lawn, dig a shallow trench through the bare area, and remove the excess dirt. The shallow trench will allow the new sod’s root system to rest (once installed) at about the same level as that of the root systems of the established grass on either side, where it will be protected from the elements or changing temperatures.
  2. Give your sod an easy start. No matter how tempting, do not just lay sod down on existing dirt, which may have dried out, or been left uneven and rocky. Always lay a light coating of topsoil on the area before you lay down the sod, to provide the root system with an easy area to acclimate itself to.
  3. Tuck in the loose ends! Leaving the corners and edges of fresh sod exposed (like below) is a big no-no in sod installation. Edges that do not fit well within the bounds of the alloted area can dry out, freeze, or otherwise become a tripping hazard in the lawn. One a newly established piece of sod begins to dry out, it is very easy for the rest of the entire piece to follow suit. It is always better to re-trim the sod piece, or adjust the shallow trench area around the sod to provide a better fit for the new grass. Tuck under any root growth on the sod’s edges so that they are below the soil line.

planted pot decorator pot greenstakes sodding 003 225x300 Top Five Sod Laying Tips 4.  Secure the sod firmly into the dirt with stakes, or turf pins. Once you have set your sod into place, lightly stretch out the sod patches to ensure a tight fit to the hole. Pin the sod down to the ground to help the root system retain it’s moisture longer, and remain in place. A firmly attached section of sod will establish more quickly than a piece that has simply been set into place, and had pressure applied to it. I recommend using a product called “GreenStakes” to pin down sod, since they are stronger than metal pins, and 100%  naturally biodegradable!

  5.  Apply pressure to your sod. Landscape companies employ the use of a stone roller, to smooth and firm large areas of new sod, but you can do the same job yourself. When you have completed your sod installation it is actually important to walk over the top of, an otherwise apply pressure to the surface of the new sod. Applying pressure helps settle the new grass into your lawn where it will be protected, and flattens any lumps and bumps along the way. 

Your Thoughts: These are my top five tips to sod laying. Do you have any sod tips of your own to pass on?

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  1. Your suggestion to lay the sod down on a smooth top soil was very smart. It’s better to lay the sod correctly the first time then to have to redo the project. If you are working with a landscaping company, it may be good to ask them their process for laying sod.

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