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Top 10 Benefits of Dormant Seeding

Posted by Nate Bahler on Aug 31, 2020 4:37:06 PM
Nate Bahler

What is Dormant Seeding? 

Dormant seeding is the practice of sowing grass seeds in late fall or early winter when the soil temperature is below 40 degrees.  Grass seed will not germinate when the soil temperature is cold. 

Dormant seeding can be a great option for those of you who have missed the late summer/early fall window to Aerate and Seed. 

Why Dormant Seed?

A great spring lawn starts in the fall. Grass goes into a dormant stage but this doesn’t mean that you can’t get a head start by laying seeds. 

  1. Thicken up thin lawn and bare spots. 

  2. Can out-perform spring seeding: Research has shown that seeds laid in dormancy can produce grass as much as half a month sooner than seeds laid in springtime. 

  3. Suppress weeds: the germination head start can help suppress weeds. 

  4. Mimics mother nature. This is the time of year when plants naturally hibernate. 

  5. You can target specific areas of your lawn. (shaded spots etc) New grass still needs sunlight for optimum germination; even when using shade seed varieties.  Dormant seeding when most of the leaves have fallen will increase the amount of sunlight during the germination process. 

    Dormant Seeding Lawn in Late Fall

    Dormant Seeding can be great for a patchy lawn like the one picture above.

  6. Seeds have time to settle: When seeds have time to settle into your lawn you can be assured that they will not blow away and go to waste. They will stay right where you laid them.  This can be beneficial when you are targeting specific patchy areas.

  7. Less water needed: All the moisture that is trapped in soil throughout winter will release itself with the thaw. If you lay seeds in the spring you might have to wait for rain before you see results.Untitled design

  8. Dry ground creates space for seeds to settle: In the dormant months, the ground is usually a bit dryer, providing cracks and gaps for seeds to settle into.

  9. Plants have more time to develop before the heat and stress of summer arrives. New grass that isn’t fully established before summer will not survive severe heat.

  10. It can be easy! It can be as simple as broadcasting seed and allowing it to work naturally through the soil. 

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