Installing Your New Sod

Congratulations! You decided to spruce up your yard by laying new sod this spring. The idea of installing your new sod yourself can be overwhelming, and now the rolls of sod have been delivered and you have no idea what to do with them. Don’t worry! B&B Hoffman Sod is here to walk you through the questions that arise during the installation of a beautiful new lawn. These are the most common questions we get about sod installation:

  • How long should I wait to lay my new sod?

    Sod must always be laid the same day as delivery.

     

  • Where should I begin?

    Begin laying sod at a straight edge such as a sidewalk, driveway, curb, or string between two stakes. If you’re sodding your entire yard, we recommend working from the backyard to the front.

     

  • How should I lay the sod?

    Stagger the rows as if you were laying bricks with the seams butted together tightly but not overlapping.

     

  • Is there anything special I should be doing with the sod as I lay it?

    Keep the sod moist and prevent it from drying out. Once an area of approximately 200 square feet is installed, begin watering immediately. Keep rotating sprinklers onto freshly laid sod while continuing to install the remainder of your yard. Water enough that it has penetrated through the sod and saturated the dirt underneath, bog-like.

     

  • My sod looks lumpy – how can I fix it?

    If you see lumps in your yard and wish to roll them out, you should do so within the first week. Rolling is not necessary, but it is an option if you feel it would improve the appearance. If you do opt to roll it, rollers can be rented from a local rental store. Be sure your lawn is very damp before you begin and when using the roller, we recommend you pull it along rather than push it. 

 

Now that you’ve laid the new sod, proper care is crucial to keep it looking its best. It may seem obvious, but the most important thing to do is WATER, WATER, WATER! 

 

If you still have questions about installing or caring for new sod, we are always happy to help! Contact B&B Hoffman Sod with any questions you may have to keep your new sod looking as lush as the day we cut it.

How Should I Take Care of My Lawn During a Drought?

In general, you should only be watering your lawn when it needs it, but knowing when your lawn needs watering might be difficult!

Grass needs to be watered about 1” to 1½” per week and you shouldn’t water any lawn every day. However, on the days you do, water the sunny spots more frequently than the shaded spots. If the grass is newly planted there will be more watering requirements to assure healthy root development. Make sure you never overwater because it can lead to shallow root systems and can drown new grass shoots, especially during drought season. 

Speaking of drought season, here are some methods and remedies that can help your lawn make it through in one piece!

Watering your lawn deeply and infrequently before 10 a.m. is essential to ensure you’re not wasting money away. If you start to see thin or bare patches of dirt, overseeding helps repair these areas. However, if the patch is too far gone reach out to us, B&B Hoffman Sod Farms, for help with sod applications. 

Before a drought, begin nourishing your grass with the correct fertilizer so your grass can store up what it needs. Whenever mowing never cut off more than ⅓ of your grass and drought conditions can stunt the growth of your grass, so the rule applies more than ever. 

If you have more questions about lawn care during a drought or the products that B&B Hoffman Sod Farms offers, visit us online at bbhoffmansod.com or call 763-434-6572. 

Improve your lawn with new sod, even in late summer heat!

If you’ve spent most of the summer trying to get grass seed to sprout, only to have a mud pit in your yard, consider trying sod. Available in multiple sizes, sod is easy to install and maintain, offering a lush, beautiful lawn before the leaves begin to fall.

Preparation. To create a thriving lawn, it is important to first prepare the soil. Loosen the top six to eight inches of soil by raking or tilling, adding any amendments your particular soil may need (such as clay, sand, or peat moss). Level the surface with a rake and grade toward walkways or driveways as needed. 

Installation. Sod can be installed anytime, but in August homeowners need to be diligent with watering. If you have the opportunity, lay sod on a cool, overcast day to minimize plant stress. Stagger rolls in a brick-like pattern and place seams together without overlapping. 

Water regularly. Moisten the soil to a depth of 4 inches or until you can lift the sod and see that the water has penetrated through and saturated the ground underneath. Remember to water at least once or twice a day for 8 days. After 8 days, the grass will tell you if it needs water by appearing bluish in color. After 8-10 days gently tug at the sod, if you feel a little resistance, then you know the roots are starting to anchor in the soil and it is safe to mow. 

Mowing and Maintenance. Mowing stimulates root growth; therefore, you want to mow around the 10 day mark. Ensure your mower is on the highest setting to help evenly distribute the moisture it receives and slow the spread of disease. Consider bagging the clippings the first few times to stimulate further root development. Allow your lawn about a month of growth, then feed it with fertilizer to counteract any nutrients that may have been lost due to heavy watering in the beginning of the process.

Turfgrass sod creates a soft, clean, and safe playing surface for children and pets, provides a great environment for  lawn games, and improves family entertaining. Learn more about sod and the products B&B Hoffman Sod Farms offers by visiting us online at bbhoffmansod.com or call 763-434- 6572.

 

Summer Lawn Care Tips for Your Minnesota Lawn

As Summer is approaching quickly, keep these Minnesota lawn care tips in mind. With a little effort your lawn can be healthy and thriving all summer!

Check out a few of these pointers to keep your lawn looking its best.

Soaking sessions. Most lawns need 1 to 1.5 inches of water every week. Since the rainfall has been sparse, we suggest watering occurs through irrigation, ensuring water soaks 5-6 inches deep into the soil. Watering for a longer duration, less often, is preferred over daily watering. This routine prepares your grass for potential or continued drought and creates a hardier grass cover.

Timing is everything. The most efficient time to water your lawn is in the early morning hours, prior to 9 a.m. At this time, there is the least amount of sunlight and wind, and the lower temperatures allow for equal water distribution. Watering at night is not recommended as the lawn then sits with no sunlight, often causing moss, different types of weeds, algae, and possibly diseases to grow and spread. Always check with local watering restrictions in your area.

Adjust your clipping. Mow your grass to its specified type height, usually around 2 ½ to 3 inches. Taller grass is a natural weed repellent and allows deeper root growth. Shorter grass drys easily, often turning brown and spreading disease.

Fine-tune your tools. To ensure an efficient irrigation routine, make sure all sprinklers are aimed at grass, not pavement or hard surfaces. Repair hoses, fittings, and nozzles as needed to eliminate leakage and save on water waste.

To learn more about summer lawn care and the products that B&B Hoffman Sod Farms offers, visit us online at bbhoffmansod.com or call 763-434-6572.

Tips on How to Plan Your Dream Lawn

This Minnesota snow has me daydreaming of days spent outside soaking up the summer sun. But, since there is still snow on the ground it is a great time to start daydreaming and planning your ideal lawn.

Designing a lawn is like designing any part of your landscape. You will need to consider how you plan to use the space and what your needs are. Here are a few tips for designing your perfect lawn.

Using the space: ‘how do you use the lawn?’ If you have kids, they’re going to want a large open, grassy area to kick the ball or play catch. While, if you’re an older couple, you may prefer just enough grass to provide an open, clean look to occasionally entertain on.

Initial installation: In comparison to planter beds or patios, a lawn can be inexpensive to install. That being said, a larger lawn will require more resources which has an impact on price. If you are debating on what to start your lawn with check out this resource on sod vs. seed.

Proximity to your home: Lawn can double as a great pathway or entertaining area, it is nice to have lush green grass just off your patio or back door to expand the usable space in your landscape.

Maintenance: A beautiful lawn requires mowing, edging, fertilizing, aeration, and occasional weed control to keep it looking lush. If you start your lawn out by laying sod, you will have an instant lawn with mature density and a solid root system. While a lawn that is started with seed can take two to three years of dedicated work to mature. 

Drainage: Sod or seed won’t grow in an area that is constantly pooling with water. If you have an area of your property that is known to have bad drainage be sure to create a drainage system first.

Highlight your garden: A carpet of green lawn looks beautiful surrounding a garden. The openness of a grassy area makes a good visual contrast to the varied shapes and colors of trees and shrubs.

The Minnesota winter is a great time to start planning your dream yard. Follow these tips and head to Pinterest for some inspiration. 

When you’re ready to chat about starting your lawn out with sod reach out to B&B Hoffman Sod, we would love to help! Turfgrass sod creates a soft, clean, and safe playing surface for children and pets, provides a great environment for lawn games, and improves family entertaining.

Early Autumn Lawn Care Tips

As temperatures begin to cool and leaves fall, autumn brings ideal conditions to care for your lawn. Before thinking about dusting off that snowblower, here are a few tips to ensure your lawn will be beautiful next spring.

Lay Sod. If you’ve been waiting to lay sod, now is the time to do so. Cool temperatures and regular rainfall allows sod to retain moisture and root quickly. Since we are experiencing a rather hot fall so far, plan to install sod on an overcast day to avoid stress on the plant. Prepare your soil by removing debris on the surface and filling in any small holes. Use a rake to loosen the soil and add any topsoil you may need. Apply the sod in a brick-like pattern, using a utility knife to fit the sod together tightly. Once the sod is in place water it immediately. Typically, it takes sod 2-3 weeks to root completely; avoid mowing until roots are strong, approximately 14 days after installation.

Let your soil breathe. Aerate your existing lawns in the cooler fall season to reap the benefits year round. Aeration creates small holes into the soil, either by using a spike or a machine to remove a core of grass and soil from the lawn. Benefits of aerating are: stronger grass roots, reduced water runoff, improved air exchange between the soil, and less susceptibility to disease. Increase root growth by allowing your grass to breath and minimizing thatch build up by aerating prior to applying a fall fertilizer.

Apply fall fertilizer. While many homeowners may think fertilizer should be applied in the spring, fall is an ideal time to refresh your lawn before going dormant in the winter. Fall fertilization will assist in storing food and ensuring strong roots throughout the winter, and greener grass after the spring thaw. Apply fertilizer around the first week in October for best results.

Purchase sod and winterizing fertilizer from B&B Hoffman Sod Farms in Elk River. To learn more about us and products we offer, visit us online or call 763-434-6572.

When Should I Aerate My Lawn This Spring?

The best time to aerate your lawn is when it is actively growing. In Minnesota, the cool-season grasses are most actively growing in the spring and fall when temperatures are moderate. Aerating while the roots are still active will help you achieve the healthy, green lawn you want.

How to tell if your lawn needs aerating. There are several signs that a lawn is in need of aeration. In addition to making aeration a regular part of your annual yard prep and/or clean-up, watch for indications that water is not penetrating the soil properly. Other signs to look for include brown or dead spots, thin and dull grass, or grass that just doesn’t seem to grow much (if at all).

How frequently should you aerate your lawn. As long as you are aerating at about the same time each year, an annual aeration should be all you need to support a healthy lawn.

When not to aerate your lawn. Aerating a lawn during times when the grass is dormant is never a good idea because it can open your lawn up to weed growth or other problems. You should also avoid aeration when your lawn is wet. It is best to wait until the grass is actively growing.

If the snow melting in the spring means a destroyed lawn for you, that even aeration won’t revive, reach out to B&B Hoffman for Kentucky Bluegrass sod. Kentucky Bluegrass is known for its dense, lush, and durable qualities making it the perfect choice for Minnesota yards.

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If you have a yard renovation on your mind or sod need for 2022, give us a call for a quote on high-quality Kentucky Bluegrass Sod. Each piece is grown in uniform thickness and bred to be dark green, soft, and durable to withstand harsh climates.

 

Planning a Backyard Wedding but Your Lawn isn’t Ready?

Tis’ the season of holiday engagements and wedding planning! Even though we are just entering Minnesota’s long winter, we know plans for summer celebrations are already underway. If you’re thinking about hosting a wedding in your yard or maybe a graduation party, but your lawn isn’t ready to be shown off, let B&B Hoffman Sod help you out.

Here are a few tips to avoid problems while still enjoying a beautiful backyard wedding:

Lay sod down: Most homeowners would agree that they want a lush green lawn to greet guests. But we know that goal means endless time spent fertilizing, weeding, and watering your grass. However, you could simply order sod and get immediate results that will be sure to wow your guests. Sod will also save you time, reducing pre-wedding stress!

Cover parts of your lawn: If your sod hasn’t had a lot of time to establish roots (usually just need 10-12 days), add a layer of protection over high-traffic areas. For instance, a dance floor provides a solid surface for guests to use and will minimize high heels sinking into your lawn. We suggest you remove any coverings from your lawn as soon as possible so your new sod can continue to receive much-needed sunlight, oxygen, and water. 

Put up natural barriers: Maybe you want your guests to avoid your newly sodded yard all together! We suggest installing a well-defined pathway that guests will naturally gravitate toward. You can also use large pots of flowers or grasses to block off parts of the yard.

When Minnesota’s winter lifts and the snow melts, the first step to preparing your yard for the big day is to green up your lawn. At B&B Hoffman Sod, we provide durable low-maintenance kentucky bluegrass that creates a soft, clean, and safe surface in an instant.

Prevent Winter Damage from Moles & Voles

Moles and voles don’t hibernate over the winter, they simply dig deeper tunnels to escape the cold. The Minnesota snow cover combined with our tendency to go outside less often in the winter makes their tunnels much harder to see; giving the illusion of hibernation. You can avoid the nasty surprise of tunneled lawns in the spring and prevent winter damage from burrowing pests by taking a few precautionary steps this fall.

Signs of Mole or Vole Damage

Determining which pesty pest is tearing up your lawn will dictate which preventative measures you should take.

  • Mole Damage Signs: 
    • Mole hills: mounds of dirt that mark where a mole excavated dirt.
    • Feeding tunnels: long tracks of slightly raised earth.
  • Vole Damage Signs: 
    • Tracks of dead grass: voles will eat some grass roots, and roots from flowers and veggies.
    • Small holes in the ground: small holes about an inch across, in your yard, or at the base of shrubs indicate a surfacing vole.

Three Ways to Prevent Mole and Vole Damage During the Winter

  • Don’t mulch too early: mulch is a great tool when you’re trying to protect plants from cold weather. Mulch is also, unfortunately, popular with voles. Instead of putting mulch down in early fall, wait until the first frost to apply your mulch. Waiting a little bit may convince an interested vole to set up home somewhere else for the winter.
  • Install barriers: common barriers include lining the bottom and sides of your beds with hardware cloth to prevent moles and voles from getting in from the ground.
  • Apply repellents: Applying an effective mole and vole repellent is a safe and reliable way to prevent winter damage. You can find repellents at your local lawn and garden center. Cedar oil is also another option to drive harmful bugs away from your lawn in addition to controlling the moles and vole’s food source.

We hope these tips will help protect your lawn this winter but if spring appears and you find your grass damaged from moles or voles, reach out to B&B Hoffman sod for low-maintenance kentucky bluegrass that is resistant to disease! Whether you need to replace a small section of grass or your whole lawn, we can help!

Maintaining Your Lawn in a Minnesota Drought

Maintaining a lush lawn can be a chore during these long heatwaves- even more so if there are watering restrictions. Your once beautiful green lawn may now be crunchy and brown. Here are a few tips and tricks for keeping your lawn healthy during this Minnesota drought.

Mowing during a drought: We suggest avoiding mowing during a drought. Your lawn is likely under stress and will have a hard time recovering from mowing. If you must mow be sure to set your deck higher, to around 3 inches. Taller grass will be able to shade its fragile root systems and keep the soil moist.  Avoid mowing areas that have a “dead” look to them. 

Be sure your mower blades are sharp. When a lawn is cut with sharp blades, healing takes place quicker. Dull blades tear the plant rather than cutting it, which leads to more damage and stress to the grass.

Watering your lawn in a heatwave: A lot of Minnesota is under a watering ban so be sure to check your local regulations before getting your sprinkler out. If you’re allowed to water be sure to get started before 8 AM; optional water times are 5:00 AM and 5:00 PM. The cooler temperatures help slow evaporation and minimize extra stress on your grass. Water enough to wet the roots and don’t water again until the grass has dried.

If you are under a watering ban prepare for the next rain by setting up a rainwater collection system. For every inch of rain, you can collect more than 500 gallons of water per 1,000 square feet of the catchment area. There are commercial systems and DIY options- do some research to find which would be the best option for you.

B&B Hoffman Sod Farms grows natural Kentucky Bluegrass sod which is well-known for its ability to maintain its beauty and adapt to changing temperatures and watering practices. Starting out with a strong, low-maintenance lawn like Kentucky Bluegrass will make a big difference when drought or poor conditions strike. To learn more about summer lawn care and the products that B&B Hoffman Sod Farms offers, visit them online at bbhoffmansodev.wpengine.com or call 763-434- 6572.