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Garden Centre

How to Make a Lawn by Sowing Seed
Creating a new lawn from seed is a lot cheaper than laying turf. And you can choose exactly the type of seed mixture you want for your new lawn. It is best to sow grass seed in warm, moist conditions so that the seeds will germinate and establish quickly. Early autumn is ideal, spring sowing gives your lawn seeds more competition from weeds. Avoid sowing in summer - even if you can water or have irrigations, young grass seedlings will suffer in hot conditions - wilting or dying. It will usually take a complete cycle of seasons before your lawn from seed is fully up to heavy wear and tear. The rate at which you sow grass seeds will vary according to the mixture or species.
you will need
Lawn seed mixture; tape measure; pegs, string and canes 1 m long for marking out (hand sowing); scales (to weigh seeds); bucket and small pot (manual sowing); seed machine (for larger lawns); rake; watering can with rose, or hose with light sprinkler; rotary mower for first few cuts; optional; plank of timber (for good straight edge); piece of plastic (for protecting surrounding areas).
Prepare the site of your lawn thoroughly. Dig over, remove stones and clods of earth, rake, and compact soil using your heels. Then lightly scratch the surface ready to receive the seeds. Measure the dimensions of your new lawn and choose seed mix.
If using a machine, measure out the correct amount of seed for your area of lawn. Divide this in half, and put the first half into a spreading machine. Close the spreading holes before you do this. Apply this first half of seed, working up and down in strips, as you do when mowing. Close off the supply hole as you turn at the end of each row, or cover the ground at the edge with a plank or piece of plastic. Each strip should join but not overlap the last. You may want to set out canes on the ground as a guide, or use a garden line - both can be moved as you proceed. If sowing by hand, divide your lawn into square metres using canes and string. Work out the sowing rate of seeds for 1 square meter and measure into a small pot or cup. Mark where this level comes to. Measure the full amount for the whole lawn into a bucket. Use the small pot to sprinkle the seeds evenly over the first square. Work in two directions to ensure an even spread, and complete one section at a time.
If using a machine, put the second half of the seeds into the machine. Work in the opposite direction, at right angles to the first rows, and finish sowing the grass seeds. If sowing by hand, continue to scatter the seeds in one section at a time until you have finished the whole lawn.
Use a swift, light action to rake over the surface of your new lawn. If no rain is forecast, water the whole area.
Your grass seedlings should emerge around 7 - 14 days after sowing. If it is dry, water the site regularly during this period.
When your new lawn is about 5 cm high, use a rotary mower to cut it to 2.5 cm. Collect the grass or rake it up carefully. Repeat this process about 4 more times. For more information on looking after a new lawn, see the How To Look After A New Lawn workshop.
Prepare the new lawn, rake level then compact the area.
Divide the lawn and sow grass seed at the correct rate.
Water seeded lawns regularly during germination and growth.

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