How To Horticulture - Lawn Seeding

  1. Prepare your site - (see SITE PREP guide).
  2. Rotavate the blank canvas and thoroughly tread the soil with your heels.
  3. If you want to improve your soil by adding a fresh layer of top soil you should do this now.
  4. Rake either your fresh soil or trodden ground to a smooth level and remove any large stones / debris which are at the surface, tread the soil thoroughly with your heels.
  5. Repeat the last step until you have a lovely smooth surface, at this point you should stop walking on the soil and leave it raked with a fine textured crumbled surface.
  6. Either using a mechanical applicator or by the handful, spread grass seed out over the area, taking care not to seed any areas (e.g. flower beds) that you don't want to grow grass.
  7. Once you have applied the seed lightly rake over the ground to mix the seed into the top crumb of the lawn area, work backwards towards your access point to avoid trampling the raked areas.
  8. The seed will need to be watered in and kept moist. Seed will typically germinate (in good conditions) in a couple of weeks and should provide a reasonable lawn in around 6 weeks, however this is subject to the weather, type and quantity of seed as well as factors such as shade, animal activity etc within your garden.



Adding fresh (good quality) top soil will not only give your new turf a nice growing medium, it will also make it easier to get a good level on the lawn.

Once the soil levels are nearly right you may find it easier to work with the back of the rake which will move small quantities of soil and allow you to 'smooth' the lumps out of the surface.

By rotavating the soil you will be turning the tired top soil with slightly fresher lower soil and mixing the nutrient content, you are also allowing valuable air into the structure.

Specialist fertilisers and mycorrhizal fungus are available to speed up and aid establishment.

If your lawn will be significantly higher than the existing levels i.e. 5cm you probably don't need to rotavate the existing soil and can simply add the new soil directly on top.

When choosing a seed, check that it is suitable for your gardens conditions, you don't have to use a single product, if you have a shady area and a sunny area of lawn, then choose 2 suitable products, at the boundary where the sunny and shady areas meet scatter a mixture of half and half to mix the varieties and blend the colours of the lawn seed.

A healthy lawn is made up of many different types of grass, some fast growing, some slow, some drought tolerant, some flood tolerant. A mixture gives better protection, not only against the elements but also against pests and diseases.

If birds or cats pose a problem in your garden you may want to cover the area while the seed establishes.



  • Edging shears
  • Wheel barrow
  • Boards (scaffolding boards are ideal)
  • Rake (the larger the rake the quicker you'll be finished)
  • Rotavator
  • Spade



  • Fresh top soil
  • Grass Seed
  • Fertiliser