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How to Grow Grass Fast

These 5 tips will help speed up the lawn growing process.

Want to grow a lawn without having to wait forever for it to fill in? If you're hoping to grow grass fast, hang with us, and don't be intimidated or confused—we're here to help! While you might not think that you can grow grass fast by using grass seed, you absolutely can if you know what you're doing and use the right products. Just follow these 5 basic steps on how to grow grass fast and you'll be on track to growing a beautiful lawn.

  1. Choose the right seed
  2. Prep the soil
  3. Seed and feed
  4. Water and protect the grass
  5. Mow the right way

1. Choose the Right Seed

Not all grass seed is created equal. We bet you already know this from looking at all the different types of grass seed out there. In most cases, when shopping for grass seed you'll be choosing between cool season or warm season grasses - depending on where you live. Cool season grasses grow best where there are large temperature swings during the year, including in the Northwest, Midwest, and Northeast. Warm season grasses thrive in warm weather where there's less of a temperature difference, including the Southwest, Deep South, and Mid-South. (If you're not sure which type you need, read this article.)

Once you've figured out which grass seed is best for your area, it's time to choose your seed. The Scotts® Turf Builder® line of grass seeds offers premium grass seed for most popular lawn types. Each Scotts seed jumpstarts growth with high performance fertilizer, and helps protect against disease. The result? Grass will grow thicker, greener, and more quickly.

To really speed up the results, apply Scotts® Turf Builder Rapid Grass Sun & Shade Mix®, following label directions. It packs both grass seed and lawn food into one handy formula designed to grow grass twice as fast as seed on its own. You can use it to put down a new lawn or to overseed a thin lawn. Just rake the soil, apply the product with your spreader, and water daily until the grass reaches mowing height.

2. Prep the Soil

We know it's exciting to get out there and sow grass seed, but there are a few important things to do first:

  • Start by removing any existing grass, weeds, and large rocks from the area you're planning to plant.
  • Fill in low spots with soil (such as Scotts® Turf Builder® LawnSoil™), and if your existing soil is really compacted, consider renting a tiller and loosening everything up.
  • Finish by using a hard rake to even everything out—then give yourself a huge pat on the back, because soil prep requires the most elbow grease!

3. Seed and Feed

You might be wondering how to grow grass fast. One of the most effective ways to get your grass to grow quickly is to fertilize right after you plant. For use on all grass types, reach for Scotts® Turf Builder® Starter® Food for New Grass, which helps grass grow up to 70 percent thicker and 35 percent more quickly (vs. unfed). If you live in the North, consider opting for Scotts® Turf Builder® Triple Action Built for Seeding instead, as it will encourage new grass to grow strong and thick while also preventing many common weeds, like dandelion and crabgrass, for up to 6 months.

To apply both seed and feed easily and efficiently, you'll want to use a spreader. If you've got a small lawn, use the Scotts® Whirl™ Hand-Powered Spreader, which covers up to 1,500 square feet smoothly and evenly. Have a larger space? The Scotts® Turf Builder® EdgeGuard® DLX Broadcast Spreader will be your go-to, holding up to 15,000 sq. ft. of product.

As with any product, be sure to read the package directions carefully. This is no time to guess or eyeball. Package directions will tell you how much product to use for proper grass seed coverage, how to spread it, and when to spread it so that you can grow grass fast and get the best results.

4. Water and Protect the Grass

It's critically important to keep your seeded area watered, but you want to do it incrementally as the grass develops. Wondering how often to water new grass seed? Use a "mist – lightly water – deeply water" process like this:

  • After seeding and fertilizing, you'll want to keep the top inch of soil moist until the seeds start to germinate (aka sprout). This means misting the area once a day, maybe twice if it's unusually hot out there—but don't let the area get soggy.
  • After seeds begin to germinate, you'll need to keep the top 2 inches of soil moist with light watering until the grass is about 3 inches tall.
  • At this point, your grass is developing its root structure, so you want to begin watering deeply so that moisture reaches down through the top 6 to 8 inches of soil.

As you're watering and the grass is growing, you'll want to keep foot traffic and pet action to an absolute minimum (avoid rousing games of fetch and tag, for example). Plan to keep people and pets off the grass for at least a month, during which time your other yard spaces or nearby parks will become your best friends.

5. Mow the Right Way

When that new grass is 3 inches tall, you can start mowing, but remember to adjust your mower to a high setting and never remove more than 1/3 of the grass blades. If you mow too low, you'll be inviting weeds in—and we're guessing that's not part of your lush lawn vision.

Seems pretty simple, right? That's because it is! If you follow these five steps, it won't be long before your yard is transformed into a lush oasis of green.