If your lawn has reached the point of no return and the only answer is to grow a new one altogether, reseeding is the project for you.
As the name suggests, reseeding involves growing grass seeds from scratch, and although arduous, it’s worth putting the time and money into.
How much does it cost to reseed a lawn? Reseeding a lawn yourself is a relatively inexpensive project, with most DIYers spending around $100 for the seed and another $100 for equipment hire, plus more if they buy the gear themselves. The final costs depend on what gear you already own, the seed variety you’re growing, and how much lawn you’re covering, but it’s usually affordable.
Before you can dive into this lawn project, it’s best to create a budget that will outline all of the possible costs. We’ve created a guide to help you do just that, including the preparation stage ,follow-up and maintenance, so you know exactly what you’re getting into.
What is Lawn Reseeding?
Reseeding is a process that involves planting new grass seeds to help bring life back to your lawn. Compared to planting seeds over the top of the existing lawn, reseeding is when you start from scratch completely and are growing from bare soil.
The reseeding project should only be tackled when absolutely necessary, as it can be a long-winded one. Before jumping in, you should see what other projects might be able to revive your lawn and at a cheaper cost.
Once complete, though, and when the grass starts becoming established, the results of reseeding will be well worth your efforts, so it’s a satisfying project to tackle.
The costs of reseeding should be separated into two parts: the preparation and the project.
By breaking them up into these two sections, you’ll see what costs are required if you take on the job yourself and be able to create a budget that’s easy to stick to and will result in a fresh, new lawn.
The Costs of Preparing for Reseeding
The preparation stage of any lawn project is essential to doing it right, and when it comes to reseeding, there’s quite a bit to do.
Here are the steps you’ll need to do before you can even start planting new seeds, to give you an idea of what’s required.
Remove old lawn – $0 – $100: Any existing lawn must be removed before you start reseeding, including dead grass and patches of a healthy lawn. There are a few methods for doing this, but manual removal is the most effective and affordable. If you have to hire equipment for this, like an aerator or power rake, you might spend up to $100, but if you already own it, there’ll be no costs.
Preparing the soil – $50: You’ll have to assess the current conditions of your soil to see what nutrients it might be lacking and to determine what type of soil you have on your land, so a DIY soil test kit is needed. If further soil adjustments are to be done, like balancing pH levels or adding nutrients, materials like sulfur and gypsum might need to be purchased.
Choosing the grass seeds – $100: The choice of grass seeds will determine how easy they are to establish and what care will be required in the future, and they vary in price per 1,000 square feet of coverage. Popular varieties like fescue grass cost $3 per pound of seed or up to $10 per pound for something like Bahia grass seed. Speaking with a landscaping expert to get suggestions on the best grass varieties for your location and needs is ideal.
The Costs and Process of Reseeding
Once you’ve prepared the earth by removing dead lawn and choosing the grass seeds to suit, you can then start the main project.
There are further costs in this part, mainly to do with hiring or purchasing the equipment, so consider what else you might need to pay for.
Spreading the seeds: Seeds can be spread by hand, but the downsides are the manual labor and the fact that they won’t be spread evenly. A broadcaster is needed to do this effectively and depending on how much land you have to cover, these can be basic or expensive. Hand broadcasters cost less than $50 but more extensive pull behind ones can be hundreds of dollars.
Rolling the ground: A lawn roller is used to help push the seeds into the earth and make better soil contact which then improves the chance of germination. A lawn roller can be hired or purchased outright, depending on how often you think you might use it. These machines can cost less than $100 or up to a few hundred dollars for a pull-behind model.
Fertilizing the lawn: Applying fertilizer to the lawn should be done around six to eight weeks after the seeds have germinated. Choose a quality turf fertilizer with a high nitrogen content, as this is best for growth at this stage. The cost of the fertilizer will depend on how much lawn you’re covering and the quality of the product, so aim between $50 and $100 in your budget.
Watering the lawn: There are no costs involved with watering your garden unless you plan on investing in a new irrigation system. However, it can be done by hand usually to cut costs but should done often. You’ll need to wash deeply for half an hour at first, then three times a day for the first week. The following week, water it twice a day, and then in the third week, this can go down to once a day.
The Overall Costs of Reseeding
The costs for reseeding your lawn will depend on a few factors, namely whether you’re going to do it yourself and what equipment you have access to.
If you plan on purchasing everything outright, the entire process can cost around $500, and you’ll get to keep all of the equipment for future projects.
Hiring the most important gear can save a lot of money, meaning you’ll pay just $100 to $200 for the seeds and the rental costs.
If you don’t usually spend a lot of time in the garden with equipment like broadcasters and rollers, this might be a more cost-efficient way to do it.
Overseeding vs Reseeding: Which is Best?
One of the biggest misconceptions when it comes to lawn care is that overseeding means something different from reseeding.
The truth is, reseeding and overseeding are the same thing, they just have different names and slightly different starting points.
Overseeding is a term used for when there’s an existing lawn, and someone is simply planting seeds on top of it. reseeding is reserved for when the old lawn can’t be saved, and the gardener is starting from scratch and reseeding the entire surface.
To determine which approach is best, you’ll need to assess your current lawn.
If it appears that the damage is beyond repair, you want to plant a new variety of grass altogether, or if it’s been at least three years since it was reseeded, then now is the time to tackle this project.
Otherwise, attempting new growth on top of the existing lawn should be sufficient.
The Cost of Hiring a Professional
If the thought of doing all that work yourself has put you off, you might consider hiring a professional to reseed for you.
According to recent estimates, you’ll pay between $100 and $200 for every 1,000 square feet of lawn you need to be reseeded if you hire a professional, and that doesn’t include any prep work.
Other factors that can influence the cost of a professional landscaping service are what’s required before they can reseed, how much lawn you have to cover, and whether there are any issues with the layout of your lawn.
Generally speaking, you can save hundreds of dollars doing the job yourself, as long as you’re committed to spending a full day doing it.
Tips for Saving Money
Any time you tackle a new gardening project, it’s easy for the costs to get out of hand.
With a little planning and some tips on how to save money, you can make sure that the final price of your reseeding project stays as low as possible.
Consider other methods: Reseeding might not be the best approach for your lawn, and sometimes it’s a cost that’s not even required. Think about other ways you can revive the grass with methods like aeration and fertilization. Otherwise, you might just need to target problem areas without ripping up the entire lawn and starting from scratch.
Think long term: When choosing grass seed, think beyond the costs involved with the reseeding process. Sometimes, you can save money with a lower maintenance grass variety or one that’s less prone to disease and weeds. Research the possible grass seeds that will mitigate some of the lawn maintenance you have to spend money on in the future.
Choose cheaper seeds: Although it’s tempting to go with the highest quality seed to get the best-looking lawn, you don’t have to spend a fortune on seeds. Something affordable like fescue can still look amazing with regular maintenance, and it’s far better than choosing an expensive seed and not taking the right care of it.
Join a gardening group: There are lots of local gardening groups available in many areas, and it’s a good way to get access to discounts. These gardening groups often have deals on seeds as they let you buy in bulk with others, and they can connect you with others who have discounts to offer also.
Buy in bulk: Grass seed can last for up to 18 months, so if you plan on using more of it, buy in bulk and save. Most garden supply stores offer discounts for bulk purchases, so if you can use it yourself or share it with another gardener, this is a great way to cut costs.
The Wonders of a New Lawn
There’s nothing like breathing new life back into your lawn by reseeding it entirely, but you need to be aware of the costs first.
Although beneficial, it can get expensive if not done properly, so make sure you create a budget and stick to it if you plan on tackling this project.
Growing a new lawn from scratch can be tricky business, but there are quite a few ways to do it. If you’re about to embark on the journey of a new lawn, these commonly asked questions might be able to help you get started.
What is Instant Turf?
Instant turf is a product name for turf that has already been grown and then removed from the ground. The turf is cut into smaller pieces and then rolled onto the lawn of its new home, saving the hassle of growing the grass from seed yourself.
Does Fake Grass Need Maintenance?
Although you won’t need to water or mow fake grass, there will be some maintenance required to keep it in good condition.
From the seeding process to the sprouting stage, a new lawn can take up to eight weeks to establish.
There are varying factors that determine the length of time it takes though, including the grass varieties, what the climate is like, how much water it receives, and how effectively the process has been done.
Rebecca Vargas is an experienced gardener and landscaper and has been rendering professional services for many years. Her services cover both private homes and commercial properties. Leveraging that rich experience, Rebecca Vargas now dedicates a chunk of time to show just about anyone how to maintain their garden and yard, whether at home or workplace. GreenIQ is his way of reaching and teaching millions of homeowners across the globe about proper gardening and lawn care practices.