If you’ve invested in a new lawn from turf or seed you’ll be wanting to start using it ASAP. One of the questions we’re often asked is “How soon can I use my new lawn?”. Here are our top tips.

relaxing on newly laid turf
It’s tempting to use your newly laid turf straight away but spare a thought for the plants and what they need to do to get established.
  • Don’t rush, wait until your new turf is really well established or your seed is growing strongly
  • Establishment depends on the season, the weather and how well the ground is prepared
  • Keep traffic very light for the first 3-4 months. It’s OK to walk on the grass occasionally but it won’t be ready for football just yet
  • Speed up establishment by adding a pre-turfing feed to the soil before laying turf or sowing seed.

How long does it take turf to settle?

On average, it’s OK to walk on a new turf around 3 weeks after installation. But everything depends upon weather, time of year and how well the ground was prepared.

Only when the roots have penetrated the soil below and established is the ‘new’ lawn ready for action. Even then, I don’t recommend letting the local rugby team loose on it – not just yet. Leave it to stabilize. After one or two gentle mows, and then it should be ready to go.

The first few weeks are critical – the more carefully you look after it, the better it will repay you in the months and years ahead. Of course, once established it still needs a good basic care programme. If all you’re used to doing is mowing, you’ll need to learn a few new tricks, but it’s not difficult – and the payback is a strong and healthy lawn all year round.

How long before I can use my newly seeded lawn?

For a spring sowing, I recommend waiting 8-12 weeks before walking on the grass.

A seeded lawn takes much longer to mature than turf. Until your grass has a strong root system, I would advise not walking on it any more than necessary. You may have green shoots but that doesn’t mean your grass is “done”.

Useful Links

How to care for a new lawn

Seeding v turfing. Which is the best way to create a new lawn?

Mowing your new lawn for the first time