The soiled thoughts of an aspiring superintendent

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To seed, or to sod? October 27, 2009

Filed under: DTM 1500 (Turf Communications) Semester One — Graham J. Wieja @ 6:26 pm

When you need to re-establish turfgrass to a specific area on your course, one has to consider either seeding or sodding. Different troubled areas on your course (an area of a green that doesn’t grow well, or a steep bunker face that grass will not grown on) will require a vision to develop a solution. Factors to consider are: cost, timeframe of establishment, whereabouts on your course do you have the problem, and what kind of grass cultivar will you be using?

Seeding is less expensive but sodding takes less time. Seeding utilizes parent material as the root zone which makes the grass cultivar more likely to adapt to its surroundings. Sod is generally a flawless turf that is weed free and can be play ready in less than a week from installation. So which is the best option? Seeding offers flexibility on a golf course. Sod installation can be very problematic on undulating playing surfaces. Erosion will still occur underneath the sod because the sod comes from a different parent material.

I believe that when you seed an area it will develop stronger roots which equate to healthier turf. Upon germination the roots only have to survive in one type of soil. Sod will often die out a year or two following installation which leaves you right back to where you started. Dead grass is unacceptable by most owners and members. It should not occur under most circumstances on a professional course. An important factor in seeding is considering ideal climate and season the cultivar ideally grows in. Spring and fall is generally the most successful time of year.

Bert McCarty: Turfgrass Science , Clemson University Video

Sod Farmer talking about re-establishing soil after harvest

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One Response to “To seed, or to sod?”

  1. muddsy Says:

    Another informative and well written article. I look forward to reading your articles. Keep up the great work.


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