More in Outdoors
Begin by installing or checking your sprinkler system and inspecting the soil for any pests. Remove any old turf or plant material. We used a mattock for this task. Then rough grade it with a rake.
Apply soil amendments and granular fertilizer before you rototill the soil. Now grade the area, using a bow rake to remove the large debris. Use a water-filled roller to compact the soil and prevent settling. You will need to grade the soil a final time.
Note: Water-rollers and rototillers can be rented from garden centers and other businesses.
Now it's time to lay your "instant lawn," or sod, which is available in rolls or folded in half. Most rolls are approximately 5 square feet. Always lay sod along the longest direction. And remember: don't walk over it.
While laying the sod, remember to stagger the ends as you would if you where installing a brick wall. Also, since sod dries from the edges, you'll want to tuck the edges in slightly and then firm them by patting with your hands. You should use a sod knife or a sharp knife from your home (Image 1). Cut around any sprinkler heads at this time (Image 2).
Note: Sod will last on the pallet about a day and a half.
Finally, roll the instant lawn with the water-filled roller like a checkerboard, both up and down and side to side. Water sod thoroughly when you finish.