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Old 07-03-2012, 05:28 PM
 
Location: Pennsylvania
1,723 posts, read 2,213,356 times
Reputation: 1145

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I have a small patch of ground in the backyard that used to house a 3'X3' sandbox. I tore up the sandbox and removed just about all of the sand, and now want to plant grass in the area. It's July in Pittsburgh and high temps are forecasted to be in the 90s for the next week: 89, 95, 99, 94, 87, 85, 87, 86, 85...

...Maybe not the best time of year to plant grass, but it's such a small area I worked it up and planted grass seed a few days ago and have been maintaining it. I'm wondering - if this planting is unsuccessful, and I give it another try in the early fall - would it be better to plant seed or use sod? I've read a bit online, but didn't really get a good idea about how well the sod will actually fuse to the existing earth...I don't want shallow rooted grass that just sort of rests on the ground. I like the idea of grass that will really root down deep.

Will I get better results with one instead of the other? Am I being too picky about this? Thanks for anyone who has some insight!
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Old 07-03-2012, 05:34 PM
 
Location: In the Pearl of the Purchase, Ky
11,003 posts, read 17,363,670 times
Reputation: 44082
My stepson had that problem but in a bigger area in the back yard. 4 wheelers ran through the area a lot for abour 3 or 4 months before he banned them. He followed his dad's advice and just left it alone. The grass around it will spread back over it before long. Save your money.
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Old 07-03-2012, 05:39 PM
 
Location: ๏̯͡๏﴿ Gwinnett-That's a Civil Matter-County
2,118 posts, read 6,341,055 times
Reputation: 3547
You're just throwing money down the tubes trying to start a lawn by seed this time of year. I wouldn't recommend planting sod either, not until the heat breaks.
Normally people plant sod when they have the budget for it. Starting a lawn by seed is a giant p.i.t.a. requiring a lot of patience. god help you if you have dogs, children etc. In the long run, which is what you asked about, I do believe seed is better because, if you know what you're doing, you can plant the best seeds (not store bought noxious weed seeds) and sow the seeds at a rate that is to your liking. I prefer planting on the sparse side (TTTF) because the more space you give the grass plants to develop, the stronger and more durable they become. Then again, that means looking at sparse areas for some time. A lot of the time with sod, you don't really know what you're getting. Sometimes it's great sod, other times it isn't.


Either way, you have to water, but you have to be especially diligent about watering with seeds. Some people hydroseed for that reason. If you're not doing that, be prepared for several brief waterings a day to keep the seeds moist. Then more watering once germinated. Expect weeds due to all the watering. Lots of them.
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Old 07-03-2012, 06:03 PM
 
9,294 posts, read 16,567,693 times
Reputation: 15740
We had any addition on the house and it was July when it was finished. Because the area sloped downward, we decided to use sod. We followed directions how to lay sod and watered religiously...turned out beautiful and it wasn't as expensive as we thought.
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Old 07-03-2012, 06:55 PM
 
2,728 posts, read 5,338,700 times
Reputation: 1785
Sow grass seed. Cover it with a very thing layer of dirt. Water it twice daily until it germinates. Once daily after that.

Total cost: $10.
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Old 07-03-2012, 09:40 PM
 
Location: Went around the corner & now I'm lost!!!!
1,544 posts, read 3,581,651 times
Reputation: 1242
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brookline_sylvia View Post
I have a small patch of ground in the backyard that used to house a 3'X3' sandbox. I tore up the sandbox and removed just about all of the sand, and now want to plant grass in the area. It's July in Pittsburgh and high temps are forecasted to be in the 90s for the next week: 89, 95, 99, 94, 87, 85, 87, 86, 85...

...Maybe not the best time of year to plant grass, but it's such a small area I worked it up and planted grass seed a few days ago and have been maintaining it. I'm wondering - if this planting is unsuccessful, and I give it another try in the early fall - would it be better to plant seed or use sod? I've read a bit online, but didn't really get a good idea about how well the sod will actually fuse to the existing earth...I don't want shallow rooted grass that just sort of rests on the ground. I like the idea of grass that will really root down deep.

Will I get better results with one instead of the other? Am I being too picky about this? Thanks for anyone who has some insight!
If you have grass around that 3X3 area just allow the existing grass to creep its way into the bare spot by breaking up the soil a bit and water 2x day OR you can put sod down but I usually dig shallow spot and place the sod into and place the remaining soil on top and water 2x day. But like every has said it a tough time of year to do this with these kind of temps but doable.
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Old 07-04-2012, 12:12 AM
 
Location: Out there somewhere...a traveling man.
44,531 posts, read 61,162,817 times
Reputation: 125467
For a 3x3 area sod would be the best as it will establish the fastest. The hotter the weather the quicker the sod will also establish. Good soil prep with some horticulture sand mixed in about 2 inches deep and watering 3-4 times a day until it roots in should work in your area. With the hot weather it should be established in 5-7 days and ready to mow soon after.
You can buy sod rolls this time of the year at most garden centers. You only need 9 square feet, that's not much to handle and quite e-z to maintain.
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Old 07-04-2012, 07:12 AM
 
Location: ๏̯͡๏﴿ Gwinnett-That's a Civil Matter-County
2,118 posts, read 6,341,055 times
Reputation: 3547
Oh whoops. I didn't understand that whole 3x3 thing. I thought brookline was talking about an entire yard.

Sod would make more sense and be easiest.
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