Watering Grass Seed: How to Do It Right The First Time

Grass seed, just like any other plant, requires water to germinate and grow properly. You have one opportunity to make these seeds grow. Otherwise, you have to lay more. The last thing you want to do is have to purchase more seeds and go through the process again. Watering grass seed isn’t that complicated, but you have to remember you need to keep the ground moist at all times. That is the key to success.

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Water: The Key to Life

Everything requires water to live. Seeds need moisture and the correct temperature to germinate. When they have both of those things, they will germinate and sprout. However, the process doesn’t get easier from there. Grass seedlings are very delicate. If they face drastic changes, they are like to die. If you forget to water your grass seed and the ground dries out, the sprouts are going to die as well.

All of this means one thing. Your goal is to keep that soil moist at all times once you notice the sprouts coming out of the ground. It can be frustrating at times. Grass seeds take an average of 5 to 30 days to germinate! If you plant them during the cooler months, it can take even longer.

Watering Grass Seeds – The Basic Steps


All you need is either a hose or a sprinkler system


1. Before you plant seeds, you need to create the right environment for them to grow. Watering the ground before you spread the seeds is a wise idea. You want to create the right conditions for the seeds to germinate and grow. Water the area a few days before you plan to plant the seeds. Add some compost to create a richer soil. 

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2. Once you sow the grass seeds, frequent watering is needed. The main problem is determining how much water is correct. Here are some tips and tricks to remember to ease the process.

If you overwater, you will notice puddles on the surface. The seeds will float, resulting in unevenly distributed seeds. New grass sprouts can drown because the roots won’t be able to get oxygen. Add overwatering at all costs! You should also pay attention to use a lawn spreader before watering them to achieve the best results.

If the seeds are on a sloped ground, you want to reduce the length of time that you water and water more frequently. This practice helps to reduce the amount of runoff you experience. Also, adding mulch over the seeds can reduce seed movement and evaporation.

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The ground shouldn’t be soggy or spongy. It simply needs to be moist. Be careful if you have clay or adobe soil. It takes a long time for those soils to dry, so careful observation is required.

For shaded areas, you don’t need to water as frequently. Sunny areas, as expected, take more water. Homeowners who use a sprinkler system experience trouble with this. One idea is to set the sprinkler to one cycle and then later hand water the other areas again. This practice prevents overwatering shaded areas.

3. The days and weeks before the seeds germinate are the most crucial. As you learned above, you need to keep the ground moist, but not water-logged. Typically, you don’t need a whole lot of water to make the soil wet. However, it won’t take long before the ground dries out as well. The frequency of watering will depend on factors like the type of soil, the amount of sun available and the type of surface. An average recommendation is to water your grass seeds two or three times a day for 15 minutes at a time. You want the top one to two inches of soil to stay moist.

​If you last longer time, the amount of water exceeds the demand; that create condition for the development of mosquito. Therefore, you should use a tool like mosquito killer to protect you and your children from them.

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4. Don’t forget to water your seeds. If you forget one time throughout the day, your seeds should be ok. If you forget for two or three days, you more than likely killed your seeds and will need to start over. The seeds will not be able to germinate. Also, if the temperature increases, the ground will dry out sooner.

5. Soon, the seeds will germinate, but they won’t all sprout at the same time. The seeds are at different depths and will absorb water differently. Some seeds are lower quality and take longer to germinate. When you purchase grass seed, they come in blends of different varieties. You need to keep the surface area moist until all of the seeds have germinated and sprouted out of the ground.

6. The sprouts will be visible, but you shouldn’t decrease watering. The newly formed roots are growing down into the soil, so any moisture below ground becomes available to the roots. Slowly, the roots won’t be as vulnerable and delicate as before. It isn’t a good idea to cut back on watering yet.

7. Slowly, as the planted area grow denser, you can reduce the amount of watering. Seed germination has completed, and the sprouts are growing stronger with each passing day. Don’t cold turkey the weak seedlings! Instead, cut back on the amount of watering slowly. For example, instead of watering three days, switch to two times per day. Watch for signs of drying. If your grass seed seems to fare well, it could be a chance to change to one lengthy water rather than two short times.

How to Water Your Grass Seed

You can use a simple garden hose if that’s what you want. Also, there are plenty of irrigation options. You want an option that is adjustable and works best in your area. If you can afford a professionally installed irrigation system, that solution would be ideal. However, that’s pricey and may not fit into your budget! Instead, here are some other DIY solutions.

Oscillating Sprinklers

Many people have run through these sprinklers in the hot summer. They are ideal for watering narrow, extended areas. You can think of their coverage area as a rectangle. However, if you have over-hanging tree branches, they may not work the way you hope.

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Stationary Sprinklers

These resemble a cone sprinkler. If you have a small area to water, they are wonderful and use low water pressure. You can pair these with other sprinklers to make sure all areas are fully covered.

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Pulsating Sprinklers

You may find these also called Impact Sprinklers. They are one of the best choices to make sure the areas are adequately watered. Pulsating Sprinklers rarely clog and create rain-like irrigation to your grass seed. You can set them to water in a full circle or a semi-circle. They allow you to change the spray distance and the size of the water droplets. You can water an area 100 feet in diameter. Metal ones are durable and better than the plastic choices, even though they do cost more money.

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​Conclusion

Even though the process seems complicated, watering grass seed is simple enough for anyone to do. Before you plant grass seed, you need to water and add compost to the ground. Once you sow the seeds, it is your job to keep the soil moist, but not sopping wet, to ensure the seeds properly germinate.

Once they sprout, you should continue your watering process until the area is thickly patched with grass. Gradually, you can decrease the amount of water that you provide. Watering grass seed takes time each day, but it is worth the results.

About the Author Ann Katelyn

I'm Ann, I have dedicated most of my life in gardening. This is a subject I enjoy the most. Since then, I committed to developing my website to be the best guidance when it comes to taking care of flowers and plants. I am trying my best to be well-versed with plants found in desert areas, tropics or Mediterranean. I still need to be knowledgeable about so many kinds of botanical life.

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