Factors to Consider When Selecting Sod for Your Lawn

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Choosing a sod variety for your lawn is exciting, but you need to do your homework. When selecting the right type of sod for your needs and your property’s features, you must consider many factors. In this post, we will discuss some of those factors and offer suggestions for sod varieties that are most appropriate.

Purpose

Are you laying sod in an area of your yard where there is a lot of foot traffic or children often play? Some sod varieties do great with moderate or heavy foot traffic, such as Empire Zoysia or any type of Bermuda grass.

Or are you laying sod with a “Keep Off The Grass!” sign? If so, any of the sod varieties should work fine for your lawn. We would recommend Scotts® ProVista™ St. Augustine grass for its dense, gorgeous color and low maintenance.

Space

There’s a huge difference between installing new sod on a half-acre lot is a lot different than installing it on a huge 100-acre ranch. If you need to lay sod over a large area, take irrigation into account. For areas without reliable access to water, you may want to opt for a hardy, drought-resistant variety, such as Bahiagrass or Perennial Peanut.

Sunlight vs. Shade

You should also think about how much sunlight your lawn gets on an average day. Lawns exposed to direct sunlight all day do well with Tifway 419 Bermuda, Bimini Bermuda, and Floratam St. Augustine.

Shaded lawns or lawns with a combination of sunny and shady areas present a problem in terms of consistent growth. Two of the best sod varieties to overcome this obstacle are Scotts® ProVista™ St Augustine and Empire Zoysia. They both tend to grow slowly and do well in sunny or shady spots.

Sand and Salt Spray

If you’re lucky enough to live on a beach or waterfront property here in Tampa Bay, you’re probably aware that it’s tough to find a grass variety that can thrive in sandy soil and withstand the constant salt spray from the Gulf. We recommend National Seashore Paspalum or Bahia grass for lawns with these conditions. These sod varieties are known to deter erosion, resist drought, and flourish were no other grass varieties can.

Watering Requirements

We mentioned watering requirements when talking about the size of the area where you plan to lay new sod, but you also need a solid irrigation strategy for smaller areas. Most sod varieties require at least three-quarters of an inch of uniform water coverage every 10 to 14 days during the cooler months, and they need to be watered once a week or more often during spring and summer. We always recommend installing an automatic sprinkler system to ease the burden of watering. Make sure the sprinkler system reaches all parts of your lawn and is programmed to only water during the early morning hours.

Drought Conditions

We also mentioned opting for a drought-resistant variety if you are laying sod in a large area without reliable access to water, but other areas may be prone to drought conditions as well. We recommend Empire Zoysia or Celebration Bermuda for drought-prone areas.

Cost

It would be great if money were no object for all our home projects. Unfortunately for most of us, the cost is typically a crucial factor when deciding which sod to use. Luckily, we carry many affordable sod options that are perfect for the soil and climate in central Florida, such as Bahia and Bermuda grass.

For more information on Tampa Bay sod varieties and pricing, call Council Growers Sod at 813-633-8665 or contact us online.