When you need a flawless lawn quickly and painlessly, there’s no better solution than sod installation. To narrow down the options, collect quotes from a few reputable installers and gather a few pieces of essential information from them. By making sure conditions will be optimized to allow your new grass to flourish, you’ll secure the value of your investment.
Where do you source your sod?
The actual source of your sod is less important than transparency around sourcing. Ideally, your project will feature great materials in the hands of a highly skilled team, so healthy sod is a key component. What you should be looking for is a variety of sod likely to thrive in local conditions, along with the shortest timeline possible between harvesting and installation. A particularly open and communicative sod farm or nursery is a great bonus.
For our sod installation service, NOVA works exclusively with an incredible local sod farm out of Manassas, VA.
How much time passes between sod harvesting and installation?
Don’t settle for sod that’s been wiling away on a pallet for days! That’s what you’ll get at your typical big-box store. At NOVA, our sod is harvested the same day it’s laid down. This minimizes the amount of stress on the sod and maximizes its ability to take root and thrive.
What types of grass are available?
Some installers offer multiple sod varieties. When making your decision, just make sure that the variety you choose is a good match for the growing conditions on your property. We use a reliable tall fescue blend that’s versatile enough to grow in both sun and shade.
How will you prepare the ground? Will you be applying any special treatments?
Setting the stage for success is a huge part of any sod installation service. After all, anyone can buy rolls of sod and lay them out. Preparing the surface, conditioning the soil, and nourishing the sod are all important steps.
Removing existing grass and weeds to create a clean slate is the first step in our process at NOVA. Our grass-cutting machine removes all debris, then we grade off the area to ensure a smooth growing surface. We put down a layer of leaf-based compost before the sod is rolled out. Turf Trust fertilizer is added just prior to or just after the laying of sod depending on the circumstances of the project.
Do any warranties or guarantees apply to sod installation?
You’re not likely to find a landscaping company offering a warranty on sod installation, and with good reason. With sod installation, more than any other service, the long-term success of the project depends largely on the homeowner. As a customer, all the power is in your hands – which is a good thing for you to be aware of.
Your most important job as a proactive customer is to take good care of your new sod once it’s been laid down. You’ll need to water it daily for the first several weeks and apply fertilizer as directed. Before that time comes, though, be sure to ask informed questions. When you combine high-quality, healthy sod with a thorough installation process and proper maintenance, you can expect great results. The key is to be certain that all three of these factors come together.
How should I care for my new sod?
For the first three weeks after sod installation, keep the soil surface constantly moist but not soaking. Water with an inch of water every one to three days, depending on weather conditions. Allow three inches of growth before you mow your lawn for the first time. Keep your pets off of it and keep the playing of sports to a minimum. If you can fit in a fertilizer application about two weeks after installation, you’ll be ahead of the game.