How To Prepare the Soil

A)  Make certain your site is completely prepared BEFORE ordering your sod.

B)  SOIL: A minimum of 3” – 4” of good quality topsoil is required.

Note: the deeper the soil the deeper the roots.

  • Adding lime and or fertilizer may be necessary, don’t guess.

  • Take the time to have your soil tested. A professional test is not expensive and will tell you just how much lime or fertilizer to add. See Soil testing.  

  • If you can’t wait for the soil test results, (about 7-14 days), add 40 lbs of pelletized lime per 1000’ sq. and follow directions for coverage on the bag of starter fertilizer.

  • When you receive the soil test results you can add any additional amount of materials on top of your new lawn.

C)  RAKE & SMOOTH: Remove debris, large stones rocks and any old existing grass. If you are going to sod on existing soil, it's a good idea to loosen the soil by rototilling. If you are spreading new soil, then rototilling is not required. Next step is to rake the area smooth.  Use a steel rake (about 18” wide) and then a landscape rake (about 36”-42” wide). This is a good time to apply any lime or fertilizer because it will be mixed into the soil as you rake.



D)  To compact the soil, water a few days before your sod will be delivered. The ground must be firm enough to support a forklift if using big rolls. Do not water the day before delivery. (Be sure to shut off sprinkler system.) 

E)  ROLL: Using a hand roller, (can be rented, click here for picture of roller), roll the soil before you install the sod. By rolling you can easily see any “high or low” spots that need correcting. You want the soil to be firm enough so that when you install the sod you don’t make knee or foot depressions. After you roll, try walking on the soil with just your heels. If you sink 1” or less, you’re ready to go!

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