Plugging is a common method of installing lawns in the southern sections of the United States. Certain grasses, such as St. Augustinegrass and the zoysias, are not usually reproduced from seed. Instead, they are placed into a new or existing lawn as small sections of sod (plugs). Because the growing season in the South is longer than elsewhere, the plugs have time to develop into a full lawn. Plugging is a time-consuming means of installing a lawn, and that is its major limitation. However, plugging is necessary for many warm-season grasses that are poor seed producers. On large sites, some mechanization of the process is possible.
Sprigging and Stolonizing
Like plugging, sprigging and stolonizing are vegetative methods of establishing a lawn. Also like plugging, the methods are more common to southern grasses than northern species. A sprig is a piece of grass shoot. It may be a piece of stolon or rhizome or even one of the lateral shoots. Sprigs do not have soil attached and so are not like plugs or sod. They are planted at intervals into prepared, conditioned soil. Several bushels of sprigs are required to plant 1,000 square feet. If done by hand, the process is slow and tedious; for large sites, mechanization can lessen the time required.
Stolonizing is a form of sprigging. The sprigs are broadcast over the site, covered slightly with soil, then rolled or disked. Since each sprig is not individually inserted into the soil, this method is faster.