reno overseed large lawns


LawnSite Member
Northern IL
I wanted to get your thoughts and see if anyone has successfully overseeded larger lawns. I am talking 15,000 sq ft + These are side sections in my yard and running hose and water to them for a fall-overseed is just not an option.

I understand keeping the seeds moist is the best practice for a successful overseeded lawn project, but is there a better seed option that I can use to just overseed and let it be?

I can prep the area the correct way as I have access to larger pieces of equipment. Would I be better to do this as a spring project and let the rains help me out?

Any thoughts or suggestions would be great.


LawnSite Fanatic
@RigglePLC has mentioned pre germinating seed before to jumpstart it. Not sure if that is an option for you or not.

Not watering in fall may have similar results as heat of summer damaging fragile grass. Not sure which option is best.


LawnSite Fanatic
Grand Rapids MI
Thanks for the comment about pre-germination, Y and F.
I think that, if you just want to "seed and let it be."
You have about a 50 percent better chance in the fall. Cut short to knock back the crabgrass and weeds.
Rake or drag with equipment to expose about 50 percent of the dirt. Remove the residue--or--leave the dead grass residue and let it serve as a straw-like mulch. Add seed and drag or rake one more time to mix the seed into the soil (and mulch).
Wait--let me clarify--seed about 8 weeks before frost--maybe August 20th--(when day temps fall below 85).
You want the soil temperature to be at its highest for quick germination.
And you want the cool weather of fall to approach about the date the new sprouts appear above ground. Apply starter fertilizer about when this happens. And fertilize again about 3 and 6 weeks later.
Apply the seed double strength as to what he package states--because in an overseed situation only about half of the seed takes hold.
Avoid cheap seed. Siteone has Metro Mix.
If you want premium, get some Premium Athletic mix.

Last edited:


LawnSite Fanatic
Grand Rapids MI
I do not have an overseeder. It is the purpose for which they are built. In theory, you do not need much soil preparation when using a good overseeder. Most brands drop the seed from a hopper in front, and then the blades saw notches in the turf. In theory the seed will fall into the fresh exposed soil. A short cut is usually recommended.
My idea is to let the grass and crabgrass get extra tall for two weeks. And--THEN--cut it short. Shocks the tall crabgrass. Slow going to cut super tall weeds and crabgrass, of course. Use the residue as mulch, substituting for straw, if possible.
Crabgrass, will stop growing when night temps fall to about 45 degrees. Frost will kill any crabgrass that remains in a few weeks.

Top Forums