Using sod on your lawn can be incredibly advantageous. You’ll quickly have a lush green lawn out of your yard, looking fresh, healthy, and glowing, ready to impress all your friends and family.
Using sod will give you instant grass from whenever it is installed and it’s a hassle-free way to a greener property. However, a lot of homeowners over the country don’t know where to buy sod.
Luckily, we have written this article to point you in the right direction. We’ll go over everything you need to know before you invest in some sod as well as where to find and buy high-quality sod and how to save yourself some dollars when buying.
So let’s get to it.
What is Sod?
For those who are unfamiliar, we are going to remind ourselves what sod is. Sod simply means grass and a section of the soil underneath which is held by a root system. In some cases, it is also held together by a fine layer of biodegradable material.
It is often used in lawns for private homes, businesses, schools, golf courses, and sporting stadiums. The benefits of using sod however can stretch further than just improving the appearance of a lawn.
It can also be used to establish a lawn quickly in regions where seed might be too expensive or would be blown away. It can also be used on hillsides and new construction sites.
Sod can prevent erosion. Sod can also improve cooling, it can improve water quality and air quality and it can also help prevent flooding.
Sod prevents flooding as it can help drain the water and divert it to the ground where it becomes a part of the groundwater supply instead of overflowing overtaxed drainage systems or local water supplies that are swollen.
In Scandinavia, sod is also used as a roofing material. In Iceland, as a material to build houses and in the very early history of the western regions of the US, it was also used to build homes.
Types of Sod
There are a variety of different types of sod and this is because different types of grass grow better under different conditions.
Some types of sod have been bred to handle conditions in a certain area and some are more adaptable to wherever they will end up growing. These different types include:
- Bermuda Grass
- Bella Bluegrass
- St Augustine and Captive St Augustine
- Centipede Grass and Covington
Before Buying Sod
The best time to lay your sod down is usually in the early part of spring or in the early part of fall. This will allow your sod to work and establish itself before the heat of summer arrives. Always remember to water your new lawn to keep it healthy.
The Best Sod for Your Lot
Site preparation and sod selection are hugely important when buying sod for the first time. If you have grass at your home already, you’ll need to ensure you buy sod that goes with that same species of grass.
It needs to blend efficiently and smoothly with your existing grasses. If you don’t know what your species of grass is, do some research on what species of grass grow in your area and how much sun your grass gets on average.
Once you have these specifications, you’ll find it will be a lot easier to narrow down the options and understand what sort of grass you have, as well as what kind of sod you need to buy.
Some providers offer a service where you can bring in a sample of your grass to one of their team members to analyze. They will examine this sample and let you know what species it is.
After this, they can then point you in the right direction of buying sod that will suit your lawn.
Preparing for Delivery
When you have ordered sod, it will be shipped to your home from a sod farm. A drop-off time will be arranged between you and the delivery team and this is so you can have everything prepped and ready to go before installation.
When it comes to the installation process, you want to start this within a day of your new sod arriving. This is important as the sod needs to be installed as quickly as possible for you to get the best results.
It should sit no longer than two days left on the pallet. If there is a delay in the installation process, ensure you keep the sod in the shed or in the garage with lots of shade. Also, ensure you keep it moist.
If there is grass left on your lawn, you need to cut this grass down with an extremely low setting with your mower. Once this is completed, get rid of any larger rocks and till the soil until it reaches a depth of around six inches.
At this time, you need to add soil amendments to the soil. We recommend using a reliable starter fertilizer. This will aid root growth in your lawn.
A product with mycorrhizae will help new plants establish themselves too and so is great to use when putting new plants in the ground.
You will need to use a rake to tackle the tilled soil and work your fertilizer into the soil. This is a vital step in making your lawn smooth and for doing any grading needed for adequate drainage.
Where To Buy Sod
If you have made a decision that you are going to buy and lay sod on your land, you need to be aware of all of your different options.
Is it better to buy sod online? Or from a box store? Or from a local nursery? Or even from a sod farm? With so many options, it can be hard to narrow them down.
You can buy sod from many different garden centers and box stores and you will always find one in your area. However, they don’t usually have sod in stock which can be hugely annoying.
If they do have a pallet, it’s often been sat baing in the sun for weeks, which is something you will want to actively avoid buying.
That being said, they do have relationships with local farms and instead of buying it from the store, you can arrange a delivery instead.
Wherever you end up buying your sod, arranging for it to be delivered to your door can be a simple and hassle-free process, and doing it this way means you know exactly when it will arrive too.
Plus, if you don’t already have grass at your property, you will have more freedom to choose what species of grass will be planted.
However, you will need to ensure you choose a species that is compatible with the climate you live in. Before purchasing sod, you will need to consider the following:
- How much sun and shade do you receive at the property?
- What kind of climate do you live in?
- Does the property have a proper irrigation system fitted?
- How much foot traffic does your lawn get?
- Is the soil heavy clay, sandy, or somewhere in the middle?
Some species of grass grow better and healthier in the shade, yet others grow just as well in both the sun and the shade. Similarly, some forms of grass look great yet cannot hold up traffic from children or pets.
Moreover, if you have heavy clay soil in your yard, you will want to have grass that is resistant to disease and thrives in wet soil. Sandy lots need drought-tolerant grasses with deep roots too.
Understanding your lawn and soil in great depth will help you out when buying sod and understanding how your yard will be used, will aid you in buying the best turf for your property.
How To Save Money When Buying Sod
There are two common ways you can save yourself money when buying sod. One of which is by installing the sod yourself and the other is by picking up the sod with your own vehicle.
Installing the sod can be very labor-intensive and this is why most people will want to hire someone to do it for them. However, by doing it yourself, you can save a lot of money and cut considerable costs of getting it installed professionally.
If this is something you would like to explore, ensure you do your research thoroughly and find out what is involved. Consider whether laying sod is something you have time for, something you want to do, and something for which you have enough garden skills.
When you are confident, go ahead and install! Just ensure you have prepared your yard thoroughly for DIY sod installation.
You could also pick up the sod yourself. If you have a vehicle, that is big enough to transport your sod, you can cut the entire delivery fee and save some serious dollars.
However, most people will find having the sod delivered is worth spending that bit more cash for the convenience and hassle-free option. However, if you have a suitable vehicle it’s an option worth exploring.
You can also order your sod directly off of the internet to save some cash. You will need to locate a sod farm that is in your area and which can cut, load, and deliver sod promptly for you to get going.
This also promises to be as fresh and high quality as possible. You should also compare the price of sod from direct-to-consumer sites to the price you get quoted locally.
We recommend getting online quotes before you even consider going to the garden center. This is because if the online quote is cheaper than the local price, let them know this and they might attempt to match it.
Watering Your Lawn
Watering your lawn is vital to keep it looking fresh, healthy, and crisp. If you start to see that your lawn is a grayish cast or dull green, it might be time to top up with water.
You can also check your lawn by walking straight across it. If your footprints do not disappear instantly, it’s because the blades of grass do not have enough moisture to spring right back.
While it might seem like you can water your lawn anytime, it’s not quite as simple as that, and having a proper routine and schedule is recommended.
We recommend watering your lawn 3 times a day in the first week, 2 times a day in the second, and once a day in the third week.
Always try to water your lawn in the morning at the very least, as the cooler winds will be calmer and allow the water to soak into the soil and be absorbed by the grass-roots before evaporating.
Additionally, watering in the evening, between around 4-6 pm will give the blades a chance to dry overnight and so this can be equally as important.
We hope by reading this article you now know everything you need to know about where to buy sod and how to stick to a budget whilst doing so. Now you have this information and have learned a little more about the installation process, go ahead and purchase some!
You’ll be able to lay a brand new, beautiful lawn in only one weekend. Be prepared to be the favorite host of BBQs, garden parties and impress all your friends and family with your new lush, green lawn.