As the summer is winding down, if your lawn is looking less than gorgeous, you have a great opportunity to make a change. Fall is the perfect time to overseed your lawn, and join the ranks of neighbors competing for the best lawn in the neighborhood.

Overseeding your lawn is the process by which you apply grass seed over your already established lawn. This process helps to fill thin areas of the lawn, correct bare patches, and thicken your lawn to eliminate space that weeds could fill during the growing season.

Why is fall the best season to overseed? Read on to find out!

Fall lawn edge
Fall is the best time to overseed your lawn.
Prostock-Studio / iStock / Getty Images Plus

4 Reasons to Overseed Your Lawn

  1. Soil temperatures are still warm
    Coming off of the summer seasons, soil temperatures are still much warmer than what they are in winter. It is important to overseed your lawn before there is any fear of frost. The soil temperatures of fall create an ideal space for grass seed to grow, thrive, and encourage seed germination.

  2. Many weeds won’t germinate in the fall
    Lawn weeds are in their peak growth during spring and summer. As temperatures cool, many plants start to go dormant, including lawn weeds. This means it’s a great time to plant grass, as it has the opportunity to spread and fill in areas with grass, instead of leaving areas open that weeds would otherwise overtake in the spring. Grass seed also has much less competition in the fall for sunshine, nutrients, and water than it does in spring and summer when weeds are thriving.

  3. Cooler air temperatures reduce pest and fungus growth
    As temperatures continue to cool after the summer months, it decreases how many bugs are out, and minimizes the ideal conditions for fungus to grow. This creates a great slate for new grass seed to thrive.

  4. More rainfall & dew in the fall
    Along with cooler temperatures, less bugs, and less chance for fungus growth comes more rainfall and natural dew in the lawn. This minimizes how much time you have to spend watering your lawn

5 Tips for Overseeding

Now that you know why fall is the best time to overseed your lawn, use these 5 tips to ensure the best success of your new grass seed:

  1. Mow
    Before overseeding, mow your lawn low and bag the clippings. Cut to about one-half to one inch, to help the seed easily reach the soil surface.

  2. Prepare the lawn for overseeding
    Clear the area of any rocks, sticks, or debris. Then take a rake (if you have a small yard) or a dethatcher or aerator (if you have a large yard) and loosen up the soil surface. Grass won’t grow if it only comes in contact with compacted soil.

  3. Choose the best grass seed & apply
    There are many different types of grass seed to choose from. The best option in cooler climates to choose when overseeding is one that spreads, and will fill in open spaces so weeds don’t have the opportunity to. GreenView Fairway Formula Kentucky Bluegrass Blend does just that. It grows and spreads new shoots that fill in a low density lawn, while providing a dark green color and fine bladed texture for improved lawn appearance.

    Perennial ryegrass is another great option for overseeding warm season grasses as it helps maintain the lawn's green color while the warm season grasses go dormant.

    If you have small areas that you plan to overseed, you can spread seed by hand, but if you are overseeding large areas, it is best to use a broadcast spreader so it is evenly applied. Distribute moderately - approximately 16 seeds per square inch. Once applied, rake and tamp the area to ensure the best seed-to-soil contact.

  4. Pair with the best seeding accelerator
    If you want to guarantee seed growth in your lawn, pair any grass seed with GreenView Fairway Formula Seeding Success. It is a combination seeding mulch and fertilizer that is applied over grass seed to ensure seed gets off to a great start, without leaving a mess behind as it fully biodegrades into the soil for no cleanup.

  5. Water
    Give your new grass a thorough watering once planted. If you don’t use a seeding accelerator, plan on initially watering your lawn daily until new grass reaches 2 inches in height. If you use a seeding accelerator such as Seeding Success, pay attention to the color of the product. If it is dark and damp looking, you don’t need to water. If you notice that it is light and dry looking, make sure to water it.