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Newly laid sod is turning brown

1671 Views 11 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  Canarywood1
I just laid about 200 sqft of sod on Sunday. I watered it once I was done laying it down and have been watering it twice a day for an hour ever since. Big spots are turning brown and it looks like the grass is dying. Do I need to water it more? I just bought a sprinkler timer and set it to 30 minutes every 4 hours now.
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You seem to be watering it plenty (unless you are in Arizona --- that's why you need to show location).

Did you rototill before laying the sod? I just laid some a week ago, and I walked all over it to get the sod well seated into the dirt.

The other thing is -- how fresh was the sod when you laid it? Did you get it from a landscape supply, of from the hardware store?
I'm in the North East.

I did prepare the soil before laying it down. I had top soil down. I raked it even and loosened it up a little.

I got it from Home Depot which may have been my problem. They get their sod from a sod company and people have written good reviews about so I figured I would give it a try.
Hardware store -- you are never too sure how long it has been sitting in their yard. Reviews mean nothing, the only thing that matters is the rolls you pick up--how long have the been sitting since harvested. The place I went is a nursery --- you have to order the sod, and then it comes in every Friday morning. I picked it up at noon, and had it laid by 3:00 last Friday. Looking good, watering about half hour a day. I think I can cut back soon.

Could be old sod, but you say "spots" that get water are turning brown. The only other thing I can think of is that the sod is sitting over the dirt rather than in the dirt.
I research everything but for some reason I just went with Home Depot on this because I saw it there. I should have called a nursery. I figured since I only needed 25 rolls, it would be easier to go through Home Depot.

I did pushed down (walk on) all the seams and the middle to get the dirt in contact with the soil.

It could have just been dying from the store and hopefully I can bring it back to life. I do think Home Depot has a return policy if the things you buy there dying within a few months.
In some areas, like NJ, good top soil is expensive so they trim the sod with as little as 1/2" or less of soil. Over watering can wash that sod off of the roots and kill the grass. Not a pro but have seen it happen. Can't advise on exactly how much is the right amount and sounds like it is too late. See what HD says.

It's already starting to go bad after only 5 days? I don't think the roots have even found the new soil yet. Seems like plenty of water. Maybe too much water and you are suffocating the roots. Maybe not enough sun? Shade-tolerant grasses don't make good sod. Just throwing out wild guesses here. Dig up a brown patch and see if there is anything obvious. Is it all rotting or bug infested or what?
I don't buy sod anymore. I have had such bad luck over the years with exactly what you are experiencing, because one NEVER knows how long the sod has been sitting on that pallet in what conditions.
I think it was already going brown before I laid it down. I didn't do much research and honestly just wanted to get it down. I should have known better to buy it at HD. Dirt on some of the rolls looked dry. That should have been my first clue but not researching I figured it was ok as long as I got it down and watered. Live and learn.

I'm going to water this for a week and see how it does. If it doesn't get better or it gets worse, I'll go back to HD and talk to someone about a refund. I'll find a local nursery that gets fresh sod.

I did also change the watering to twice a day for an hour each time.
ok, I know nothing about sod but seriously, that sounds like way to much water. If you have decent water pressure and volume you are probably putting down 1-2 inches of water per day. normal grass in the heat of summer really shouldnt be more than about 1.5 inches a week. If your just trying to keep it from drying out, try doing 5-10 minute sessions of the morning and early evening. Then again, I know nothing about sod so I could be wrong but at max your putting down 14 inches of water a week. Thats probably double what we get here in a month or more lol.
Probably nothing wrong with your sod that a little rain won't fix, the crap they add to the water supply will just barely keep your new sod alive, i just laid some new sod 2 weeks ago and it was doing what your's is doing, then Saturday a tropical storm started coming on shore and brought the rain with it, 3 days of rain and the once brown sod is all green and almost ready to mow, moral of the story, pray for rain.

Forgot to say, my sod came from HD also although it was fresh.
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