Should You Choose Sod Or Seed With Your Lawn Installation?

overseedingWhen establishing curb appeal for a home, it doesn’t begin and end with the exterior of the structure. It actually starts at the curb and includes the expansive property leading up to the structure. 

The pride taken in creating the ideal aesthetic in every detail, whether it be a newly constructed house or simply an upgrade, should extend to the landscaping as this will ultimately create the first impression as people drive by or guests arrive. Click for advice on starting a lawn from the beginning.

If it is a new construction with bare soil, or the lawn is in desperate need for an overhaul, there are options for homeowners to create a fresh, lush lawn. The primary two choices are sod or seed. 

Beginning The Journey With A New Lawn

If you have a bare plot or an existing yard that is less than desirable, you will be establishing your yard from scratch. The suggestion is to have the soil tested before contemplating the initial step of whether to sod or seed the landscape. 

The results will provide viable information like the pH, available nutrients, and organic matter. These details make it possible for you to fertilize in an effort to bring your soil to adequate standard to provide a healthy base for grass.

Deciding Between Sod Or Seed

Deciding between sod and seed is basically a personal choice. Either will provide a beautiful, sustainable, healthy lawn, but the techniques are significantly different. In laying sod, the recommendation is to use an expert service to lay the product. You can find knowledgeable professionals online like able to help you become informed in order to make an educated decision.

Sod is unique in that the strips are harvested by farmers with the mature pieces consisting of the grass, soil layer, and severed roots or netting holding the two together.

Grass seed is generally a DIY project for homeowners to establish the lawn themselves as the ‘grower.’ It allows you to influence how the yard develops and experience each step of the process until you have a carpet of green landscaping.

Neither deems a better option for starting a landscape from scratch. Both offer their own set of advantages and disadvantages. It’s merely a matter of personal preference. Some people like the instant gratification that sod provides in that it’s installed and in about three weeks there is a lawn you can actively use. 

Others enjoy the process of seeding, manipulating the lawn the way they want it, and taking their time with the yard’s development. The choice is subjective.

Advantages And Disadvantages Of Sod And Seed

As with all prospects, sod and seed each offer their own set of advantages as well as downsides to take into consideration. It’s important to factor all the aspects when making an informed decision.

** Sod Advantages

  • Immediate Gratification:  You receive instant results with this technique. Though, it’s not readily available for typical lawn activity upon installation, the curb appeal of a well manicured landscape most people are looking for is immediate.
  • Quickly Establishes: With proper professional installation, root establishment should take place within approximately three weeks becoming ready for regular activity.
  • Areas Of Erosion: Where there are hills or slopes with the potential for erosion, the addition of these pieces create stability for the soil as soon as they’re installed. Follow for guidelines on laying sod for those with DIY ambitions.
  • Weed Control:  Grass harvested as state-certified, quality product offers minimal, if any, weeds for homeowners to have to contend with.

** Seeding Advantages

  • Cost: Premium grass seed offers a much lower starting price point compared to that of strips of harvested products for a lawn of equal size.
  • Wider Variety Of Grass Choices:  Choosing this method provides expansive grass variety options allowing you to match the conditions for the region and complement the growing environment. When you can choose based on the geography, soil, and lighting, the results are better and you have less maintenance.
  • Establishment: Seedlings develop healthy, deep roots that continue to grow without disturbance.

** Disadvantages Of Sod

  • Cost: The initial cost for the product is high in comparison to seedlings. The investment, however, brings with it a finished yard in a matter of a few weeks as compared to its counterpart taking months to establish a full, lush lawn. For budget-friendly installation tips go to .
  • Choice Restrictions: The choices of products are limited to what the farmers opt to raise. There might be few to meet your specific lawn goals. Ensure to research farmers with wider varieties.
  • Conditions For Growing:  Most of the strips are grown in full sun on farms. It can prove challenging for homeowners growing on shaded properties. It may take a period of time for adjustment.
  • Transplant: The products need to be laid typically within 24 hours from the time it is cut.

** Disadvantages Of Seeding

  • Slow Start: The speed varies for germination depending on grasses. Some lawns can take up to 12 weeks before you can step on them. Weather is a factor in the growth speed also.
  • Significant Maintenance: Paying close attention, monitoring, and watering constantly is crucial while the seedlings establish.
  • Potential for Loss: The soil and the seeds have the potential for washing away with heavy rainfall while the roots are trying to establish, destroying your efforts.
  • Weed Battle: Weed seeds compete with the grass seedlings for the water, nutrients and light in the soil. If you follow proper planting directives, waiting for the fall growing season, there is less weed activity.
  • Lawn:  Waiting to have a beautiful, lush, established yard with this method requires an entire growing season before it can be considered mature, dense and stable enough to handle the vigor of typical lawn traffic.

In deciding, it seems the main consideration is whether you want to establish a landscape immediately or if you prefer to develop the yard over a gradual period. Today, people strive for positive curb appeal and not many are patient enough to wait for a lawn to establish. Most want that instant gratification of a beautiful landscape to go with the ideal house aesthetic. It’s a matter of sustaining the neighborhood and creating the impression people will assume. You only get one shot at that.


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