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Put Down Grass Seed OR Kill Weeds?

March 29, 2018

This is a big question in early spring: “My lawn needs everything what should I do first, put down seed or kill my weeds? The reason why this question is tricky is because many of the weed controls will harm new grass seedlings.

Grass seed should come in contact with your soil. If it lays on top of dead grass, it is less likely to grow.

Here are your best two options:
Do you have less than 75% good grass with bare spots larger than a few inches in diameter?
Answer: If lots of larger spots, then seed this spring. Be sure to use a special Starter Lawn Food plus Weed Preventer that is compatible with grass seed (the regular crabgrass preventers will keep grass seed from growing). If you do not prevent weeds when you seed, you are likely to be very disappointed as crabgrass and other weeds will germinate and choke out your good grass before it has a chance to take hold. It is best to rough up the soil surface to help make sure the grass seed comes in contact with the soil. A garden rake can work for small areas or for large areas a machine called a slit-seeder or de-thatcher can be rented. You just select the Turf Builder Grass Seed blend that is right for your conditions, such as sun, shade, heat-tolerant, etc. If you only have a few bare spots to take care of, consider Scotts EZ Seed. Spread the Starter Lawn Food plus Weed Preventer after you put down the seed. Feed your lawn again in one month after seeding with Turf Builder Lawn Food. Once your new grass has been mowed 4 times, you can kill existing weeds with Ortho Weed B Gon MAX plus Crabgrass Killer OR Roundup For Lawns.

Do you have more than 75% good grass however your lawn is thin and weedy without widespread bare spots?
Answer: If you have more than 75% grass, you may be surprised how your good grass will fill in with four feedings a year at 6 to 8-week intervals. With this option you skip spring seeding (you can always seed in fall if your lawn does not fill in enough). Once your daytime temps are consistently between 60 and 80 and dandelions are beginning to bloom, feed your lawn with Scotts Turf Builder Triple Action to prevent and control weeds while feeding. Then feed your lawn three more times this year with one of the Turf Builder products at 6 to 8 week intervals after your first feeding.

If you have questions during the year, the Scotts Help Center folks will be happy to help you.

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