We get asked a lot about watering brand new sod - when? how much?
Here's how to assess the water requirements of new sod.
Peel back a corner of your new sod and touch the ground underneath. If the ground is moist/wet, then no need to water. If the ground is dry, then you'd better get the sprinkler and water your newly laid sod.
Keep new sod "wet like a sponge" (this may mean daily or 2x daily watering) until roots form and you can hardly pull it up.
The time table may vary: it could take 2 weeks of daily watering in the heat of summer or as long as the entire winter if you've laid dormant sod.
As you keep peeling up a corner (check different corners each time), you'll start to see white roots and it will get harder and harder to pull up a corner. When you can no longer pull up a corner, it's time to ease up on watering, but don't stop - over the next several weeks gradually wean off the intense watering. In the end, an established lawn will require only 1" of water per week for warm season grasses and up to 2" for tall fescue.
Special New Sod Watering Tips:
- Pay close attention to newly laid sod around driveways and sidewalks. Tons of heat transfers from paved surfaces and will dry out adjacent new sod much faster than the rest of the new yard.
- Check your new sod for moisture daily. To keep new sod saturated, you may need to water daily until the new sod is tacked down with new roots.
- In high heat temperatures, especially with tall fescue, brand new sod may need to be watered TWICE a day to keep it moist.
Special Dormant Sod Watering Tips
Instructions on how to water dormant sod can be found toward the bottom of this page about installing dormant sod.