How do you overseed a lawn?

How do you overseed a lawn?
How do you overseed a lawn?
Is your lawn or garden looking patchy, tired or thin? Maybe over the winter months, it has been tough to keep on top of or perhaps your kids or pets have caused a little damage. Overseeding your garden, also known as reseeding, will repair damaged areas giving you luscious green grass and ultimately bringing your lawn back to life.

A common question we often hear is "how do you overseed a lawn?" 

The answer is that the procedure required to overseed a lawn is a simple step-by-step process of lawn preparation, moistening the soil and then evenly sprinkling your grass seed over the top.

This article goes into more detail on the steps required to ensure the successful overseeding of your garden lawn.

When should I overseed my lawn?

To get the best results from overseeding we are looking for the weather when the temperature is mild yet still tends to bring along plenty of rainy days, such as during months of spring or autumn. For seeds to grow they need the right conditions for germination. Grass seed germination relies on warm soil temperature, around 8-100C, and plenty of moisture.

Overseeding preparation

  • Weed the lawn either by hand or using weed killer
  • Remove any boulders, stones etc.
  • Scarify the soil to remove moss and loosen the soil
  • Fertilise the soil with a quick-release fertiliser.

Overseeding preparation allows you to repair any damage to your lawn and will give you a fresh canvas to work from. We suggest beginning preparations 1-2 weeks before reseeding. However, we realise life is busy so if you’re planning on reseeding in one day it can still be done with great results. Be aware you will need to weed the grass by hand as using weed killer and sowing new seed on the same day is a bad idea as the new grass could be damaged.

Using a quick-release fertiliser will give your lawn the quick boost it needs in preparation for reseeding. Basically, it will help your lawn grow and fill out more quickly. To avoid grass blade burning apply fertiliser evenly on an overcast day or in the evening when it’s not too hot. Ensure you water off the fertiliser from the grass blades after application or to save a little time apply fertiliser just before rainfall.


  • Mow your grass to approximately 25mm in length
  • Moisten the soil
  • Sprinkle the seed onto the grass evenly - apply more in patchy or thinner areas.

The seeds should be applied at a rate of 35g per square metre as standard. However, if patchy areas are present then apply the seed at a rate of 50g per square metre. Consider the depth of soil your seed will sit in. If you bury it too deep then the plant will run out of energy or if left on the surface it may dry out or birds may come along and eat it up – try to find a happy medium.

Finishing Touches

  • Water your lawn after reseeding.
  • Roll the lawn (optional)
  • Continue to mow the grass regularly with care and attention.

When watering the grass, little and often is best. We recommend you water your lawn every day after reseeding until your new grass is established, mainly if there has been only light rainfall or no rain at all. However, be aware not to drown the seed with overwatering. Also, give your lawn a chance to sprout and grow by protecting it from traffic for 2-3 weeks. For future mowing cut at a height of approximately 50mm. Pay extra attention to the first cut after overseeding, your lawn is still getting established and needs a little extra care.