When is the best time of year to lay turf? This is a commonly asked question and one worth some consideration. Although turf can be laid at any time of year, in any season, the conditions of Autumn and early Winter can certainly make the job much easier.
As with many home improvements – preparation is key. This holds true for those outside jobs as well! Good soil preparation is essential in order for the turf to become well rooted and established into the ground. This involves skimming off any existing grass, removing stones, digging over, raking and ensuring the surface is suitably flattened and ready to receive the new turf. All these processes are made difficult by the hard dry ground of summer. In the Winter however, many of the weeds have naturally begun to die back, and cooler temperatures can make it much easier to break up the soil. In fact, there are usually only a few weeks in Winter when then ground may be covered in snow or a particularly hard frost, that this becomes a more difficult.
Once the turf has been laid, it can take several weeks to take hold and firmly root itself into the ground. At this stage the grass is most vulnerable. It should be regularly watered, and high temperatures and drought need to be avoided. The cooler temperatures of Winter allow time for the grass to root without the risk of drying out from the summer sun, and the rain will lesson the need to water. Mowing should be delayed for as long as possible, as should walking on the new turf – not ideal if you want to use your garden to enjoy the summer evenings! Come Winter it is much easier to leave the newly laid turf untouched and allow it to become firmly rooted and established.