Sod is a great way to get that lush green lawn you always wanted. You will get faster and higher quality results with sod than you will with normal grass seed. The downside to sod is how much more it costs to buy. You will pay a substantially larger amount of money for sod than you would for grass seed. After spending all of that money the worst thing that could happen is for your yard to die out. To protect your investment you need to learn the proper care of your sod, especially right after it has been planted. While this guide focuses on Zoysia Sod because it is one of the most popular types of sod out there, it will also work for most of the other sod styles as well.
Caring for Your Zoysia Sod
After the sod is planted it must be treated carefully for the first month. During that month you have to make sure that your sod is watered properly. The watering schedule for new Zoysia sod depends on the time of the year and the temperature. There are two different watering schedules, one for above 75 degree weather and one for below it.
Above 75 Degree Weather
If you have planted your new Zoysia sod in the heat of the summer watering will be much more crucial. For the first week the sod has been down you should water it twice a day for 3 days once a day for the next 3 days and hold off on watering for the last day. During the second week you should only water the sod once a day and during the third it will drop down to every other day. On the fourth week you should water your lawn two times on non-consecutive days.
Below 75 Degree Weather
Sod planted outside of the summer months when it is lower than 75 doesn’t have to be watered as much. The first week requires two days of twice a day watering, then 3 days of once a day watering and two days rest. For the second and third weeks you only have to water your Zoysia sod every other day. The fourth week you will be watering the sod on two non-consecutive days.
How Much Water
It is important to know how often you should be watering your sod. It is also important to know how much water to give the sod each time you water it. For the first week you should be putting a half inch of water on all of the sod each time you water it. It is enough water to soak the roots without drowning the plants. As watering becomes fewer and farther in between you should slowly increase the amount of water to a little less than an inch. Giving the right amount of water will keep your sod healthy and strong without hurting it’s growth.
Mowing the Sod
You have to be very careful about when you start to mow your sod. It is recommended to mow it half way through the third week of growth but that is not always the case. You should measure your sod to make sure that it is at least three inches long before you mow it. This could take four or even five weeks in some cases. You can even wait until it gets closer to four inches before mowing at it will be fine. If you cut the sod too early it could potentially kill it or at least slow the growth down and you don’t want that early on.
Fertilizing Your Yard
Fertilizer is great for Zoysia sod. It promotes growth and leaves you with a lusher greener yard. If you are planning on fertilizing your yard it is important to remember that you can’t do it right away. New sod should not be fertilized until it has been there for a few months. It is best to fertilize it in spring and fall before summer and winter. The optimal months to apply fertilizer to your yard are May and September. You will be giving your yard the extra nourishment to keep on going throughout the more difficult months.
If you follow these general guidelines after laying down a layer of sod you can expect to get the best results possible. Sod is a large investment and you should do everything in your power to make sure that the first application of Zoysia sod is the only application needed.