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Best Way to Reseed a Patchy Lawn

5 min read

If you are faced with a patchy lawn, the best way to reseed it is to start with the right products and follow a few simple steps. Consider using Jonathan Green Black Beauty® Grass Seed mixtures because they are so deeply rooted and drought tolerant.

Jonathan Green supplies genetically superior cool season grass seed, soil enhancers, fertilizer, and organic lawn products to professional customers, such as sod growers and independent hardware stores and garden centers throughout the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Midwestern United States, and recently the far Western United States.

Why is My Lawn Thin or Patchy?

Many factors contribute to the failure of grass seed to grow as expected.

  • Patches of your lawn may not be getting adequate sunlight. Shade from trees, structures, and other objects can cause thin grass growth, straggly grass, and bare patches.
  • Hard or compacted soil can make it difficult for grass seed to grow because the roots are unable to access the air and soil nutrients they need to grow.
  • Lawn diseases and insects like soil surface-feeding chinch bugs and sub-soil feeding white grubs can cause thin, patchy grass.

Repair Your Patchy Lawn

Even if your lawn is in poor condition, it is possible to achieve a healthy, dark green expanse of perfect lawn by overseeding, or introducing some fresh seed into the sparse or thinning areas.

Your lawn will never be better than the grass seed you plant, so we recommend overseeding with either Black Beauty® Ultra Grass Seed mixture or Black Beauty® Fall Magic Grass Seed mixture after Labor Day:

  • Black Beauty® Ultra Grass Seed is most similar to what is found on sod farms. The seed mixture contains three grass types for species diversity and these are tall fescue, Kentucky bluegrass and perennial ryegrass. These grasses grow a naturally dark-green and beautiful lawn with excellent heat and drought tolerance.  Black Beauty® Ultra Grass Seed germinates in about 14 days and will improve any lawn it is overseeded into.
  • Black Beauty® Fall Magic Grass Seed has been specially formulated for successful fall seeding and contains several grass types, including Black Beauty® tall fescues. It can be used in sun and shade lawn areas on established lawns or to start new lawns from scratch. Black Beauty® Fall Magic Grass Seed repairs summer damage and provides an attractive, thicker, greener lawn, with germination in 10 to 14 days.

Overseeding Step-By-Step

Step 1: Rake up dead grass and weeds and mow the lawn, cutting it about one notch lower than usual. Loosen up bare spots with a rake or garden weasel to create a good seed bed because seed-to-soil contact is very important to ensure the best lawn establishment.

Step 2: Correct soil problems (pH and/or compaction). Lawns grow best in a soil that that has a pH which is neutral to slightly acidic (between a 6.2 and a 7.0 reading), so balance the pH before you overseed. Jonathan Green’s MAG-I-CAL® Soil Food will help to raise the soil’s pH and, at the same time, help the new lawn grow thicker and healthier. Love Your Soil®  will loosen and aerate hard or compacted soil, feed the soil microbes, and make the lawn soil more alive and porous, which will enhance root development. Both products can be applied the same day as the grass seed.

Step 3: If your lawn is small, you may be able to broadcast the grass seed by hand. For larger lawns, a lawn spreader is the best way to quickly cover a lot of ground and achieve uniform coverage. Make certain to slightly bury the seed in the top soil.

Step 4: Water the lawn every day for a week or two, unless it rains. The objective is to keep the seed and top several inches of soil moist until the seeds germinate. Mow the new lawn when the grass plants are about three inches tall.

Visit Jonathan Green online or your nearest independent retail store for more information on the best way to reseed a patchy lawn with Black Beauty® grass seed.

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