Creating a new lawn? You’re faced with two choices. Turf or grass seed. In this article we look at the pros and cons of each.
Turf – what’s good about it?
Turf is easy to lay and greens your garden instantly – a turfed lawn is normally ready to use in 3-6 weeks
When you buy turf, you’re buying 6-12 months worth of time. You’re also saving a lot of hassle for yourself.
- No need to worry about seed varieties or quality – it’s been done for you
- The seed has been sown evenly (which isn’t easy to do!) – no clumps or bald patches in your new lawn
- The birds won’t pinch your new turf but they will scoff grass seed like it’s going out of fashion
- You won’t have trouble with cats digging up your turf to “fertilize” the soil
- Turf is green from day 1.
- It takes as little as 3 weeks until your turf can be walked on.
What’s not to like about turf?
- It’s perishable. If you don’t lay it on the same day as it’s delivered the quality will go downhill fast.
- It needs a bit of muscle power and energy to lay it (it also burns calories!)
- It’s dirty – best to have it delivered unless you like having soil in your car
Grass seed – the good bits
Grass seed gives you lots of choice but it does take longer to establish a lawn from seed than from turf
Grass seed cost less than turf and it does have some advantages over it too
- With a bit of research, you’ll be able to choose the exact seed mix for your requirements
- Seed can be stored until the weather is nice and the ground has been prepared
- It weighs very little – you don’t need to be strong, energetic or agile to sow grass seed
- It’s not at all messy
- Excess seed can be put in the shed and used for lawn repairs in the future
Grass seed – the disadvantages
In many ways, grass seed is the opposite of turf. Where turfing is instant but more expensive, grass seed is cheaper but takes time.
- There’s a confusing and an overwhelming number of grass seed mixes out there. Choosing the right one can be difficult.
- Germination is often uneven, and in colder weather it can be slow.
- You need to protect grass seed against marauders. Birds will eat the seed, cats will use the soft soil as a lavatory.
- You’ll probably find that all sorts of weeds germinate alongside your grass – be prepared to remove them.
- It takes 6-12 months to create a mature lawn from seed
There you have it – the facts. I can’t tell you whether turf is better than grass seed or vice-versa, it’s all a matter of personal preference.
Even the professionals have different views. The best golf courses are normally grown from seed. The best sports pitches are turfed.
Over to you……….