How to Install Sod
LESLIE: Maybe you’re thinking about installing some sod, the quickest way to a beautiful yard, like James is, calling from California.
James, what’s going on and how can we help?
JAMES: Well, I’ve got my backyard all tore up. (Leslie and Tom chuckle) It had grass on there before and it’s been all scraped off and sitting empty for a few months. But it’s kind of sandy soil but there must be some clay in it because it gets as hard as a rock.
TOM: Have you ever tried to rototil it?
JAMES: No. I’m going to do that. I was wondering if there’s – I see these farmers out here putting this white gypsum or something out on their soil and I’m wondering what the purpose of that is, if that’s …
TOM: Well, that sounds like lime and lime is put on to correct pH.
JAMES: Oh, OK.
TOM: Yeah, and actually that could be part of your problem, if the farmers are doing it.
LESLIE: Yeah, if you’re seeing your neighbors do it.
TOM: If your soil is very acidic, if your pH is like below 6, you can add lime and that will improve it. So you …
LESLIE: And you can get a soil testing kit from your local home improvement center and really find out what’s going on with your soil so you know exactly how to treat it when you’re prepping to do anything.
TOM: Yeah, the smart thing to do would be to test the soil first so you know what’s there because that may be more of the problem as to why it’s not growing. Then you could add lime, if you have to, or any other soil, additives, or fertilizers. And then what you want to do is pretty basic construction. You just want to make sure that you roll it out, level it out so that it’s really nice and flat and even. And then, when you put the sod in, the most important thing is to water, water, water. Water all the time. Water very frequently until that stuff really starts to knit.
LESLIE: And install it as soon as it arrives, so be ready to go once it gets there. Because it’s so removed from everything, it will dry out so quickly; especially on a hot day.
LESLIE: And don’t wait til all of it’s installed before you water. Do it right away.
TOM: In fact, the best time to put new grass down is really in the fall when it’s a little cooler so it doesn’t get totally burnt out. So if you want to wait towards the end of the summer and maybe tackle it then, that’s really the best time to do it.
JAMES: I appreciate it.
TOM: You’re very welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 888-MONEY-PIT, 888-666-3974.