What Temperature Can Sod Be Laid?

If you’re looking to turn a patch of bare dirt into a lush green lawn, you can throw down some grass seed and wait for it to take hold.  Unfortunately it can take a couple of months before you have a fully developed lawn. If you don’t have that kind of timeline to work with, you might want to consider laying sod instead.  Sod will offer you a much quicker road to a full lawn, but you’ll need to take some precautions during installation. One of the most important questions that we’re often asked is “What temperature can sod be laid?”

Ideal Sod Laying Temperature

If it’s too hot or too cold you can have a hard time getting sod to take root.  The ideal temperature range for laying sod is between 12 and 18 degrees Celsius.  You don’t want it much colder or hotter than that. At the colder end of the scale you might still get an overnight frost which could kill off the root system.  If the ground freezes the roots won’t be able to completely establish themselves. At the higher end of the temperature spectrum the roots can dry out and die. If you can install sod in the spring or fall you’ll have a much greater chance of success.

Preparing The Soil

Just throwing some sod on a patch of dirt doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll end up with a lush lawn.  Preparing the soil for the sod is a necessary part of the process. Make sure to weed the area and get rid of as many rocks as possible.  Add a good layer of compost to help the sod root system get a good start. Add any soil amendments that are needed, mix it in and level the ground afterwards.  

Moisture Levels

Sod root systems quickly dry out and need to be protected from this scenario.  If you can lay the sod on a cool, rainy day you’ll be much better off than with a hot sunny one.  Give the soil a good soaking before installation and water again once the sod is laid down. Keep an eye on moisture levels for the next couple of weeks, especially if it’s hot and sunny.