Depending on the species of grass, the type of site, and the immediacy of the need for a usable turf, one of four methods is used to install a turfgrass planting:

1. Seeding

2. Sodding

3. Plugging

4. Sprigging and stolonizing


Seeding is the most common and least expensive method of establish­ing a lawn. The seed may be applied either by hand or with a spreader on small sites. If the site is extensive, the seed may be applied with a cul – tipacker seeder (a large seeder pulled by a tractor) or by a hydroseeder

figure 13-4. Use of the Hydroseeder gives rapid stabilization to this steep embankment. (Courtesy United States Department of Agriculture)

(a spraying device that applies seed, water, fertilizer, and mulch simul­taneously). The hydroseeder is especially helpful for seeding sloped, uneven areas (Figure 13-4).


When a lawn is needed immediately, sodding may be selected as the method of installation. Sod is established turf which is moved from one location to another. A sod cutter is used to cut the sod into strips. These are then lifted, rolled up, and placed onto pallets for transport to the site of the new lawn (Figures 13-5 and 13-6). At the new site, it is unrolled onto the conditioned soil bed. The effect is that of an instant lawn. Sodding is much more costly than seeding, but the immediacy is important to some clients and necessary on certain sites such as steep slopes and terraces, where seed might wash away.

figure 13-5. This sod has been cut and has been folded and stacked for transport to the planting site. (Delmar/Cengage Learning)
figure 13-6. After careful preparation of the soil, the sod is unrolled at the site of the new lawn. (Delmar/ Cengage Learning)

Updated: October 4, 2015 — 10:14 am