How Long Does It Take For Hydroseed To Grow? Let’s Talk About It!
Do you have a landscaping project as well? I have an area in my front lawn that I plan to beautify. My landscapers opted for hydroseed to make the scenery become green very quickly.
However, when I asked them how long does it take for hydroseed to grow, they said, “It depends on how would you like it to be, ma’am.” It may not be complicated, but I want to know how simple the process can be.
Table of Contents
What Is Hydroseeding?
For a quick background, Hydroseeding is the process of mixing wood mulch, grass seed, fertilizer, bonding agent, and water in a container. All of these can blend together with a garden auger. When done, the tinted green mixture is ready for spraying on your new lawn.
Compared to sod, hydroseed is cheaper, needs a short time to grow and allows the roots of the grass to go a lot deeper underneath.
How Long Does It Take For Hydroseed To Grow?
Various factors affect the growth of a hydroseed.
It could take about 5 days to 4 weeks for hydroseed to grow, but this is just an estimate based on some factors like weather, soil fertility, type of grass seed you use, and how well it was mixed in with soil.
Nevertheless, the average length of time before you see fresh new grass sprouting is about nine (9) days. Within a month after, the grass would probably be 3 inches long and is due for cutting.
What Are The Factors To Consider When Planting Hydroseed?
The length of time waiting for the grass to grow are dependent on some factors. My landscapers made sense when they told me it all depends on how I would like it to be. Here are the factors that would explain why the growth span differs.
Whether you choose the traditional or Hydroseeding way of growing grass, its success greatly depends on how you prepare the soil. I understand that the first thing to do is eliminate all existing weeds and break down large lumps of soil by raking it. Remove any bumps that are bigger than your fist if it is hard to smash.
Only then, it is right to put compost by plowing it about 6 inches deep down. I rake the soil to make it level and tap lightly with a water roller before it is ready for hydroseed application. Having a good quality of topsoil makes your grass grow fast. Therefore, working hard to prepare the soil is worth in having a healthy lawn.
Apparently, I am only familiar with sods, so this is my first time using hydroseed. A friend of mine suggested using Scotts Turf Builder Grass Seed since it worked well in her lawn than sods. Yet, you can check what works best for you.
Do you want to see a well-prepared ground for planting? Watch this video:
Watering And The Weather
I need to keep the hydroseed mixture damp for the grass seeds to sprout. Hence, I water it four times daily for about three weeks. The amount of water is not accurate though. Because it depends on the water pressure, when it rains, and if I use the sprinkler or not.
Watch this video to have an idea on how it is to water hydroseed:
After a month, I start to lessen the water and give time for the roots to go deeper under the soil. Gradually ease back on watering until you only need to do so once a week. Remember, your lawn may seem to appear lush and green, but it would still run for a few months more before it would completely fill in the whole area.
I really recommend you have a sprinkler when watering. By doing it by hand took a lot of effort and time on my part. However, when your options are limited, do the planting in spring or fall like what I did to mine. The best time to plant grass seed is when the weather is colder, so it requires less water.
Even so, planting in the summertime has its advantage too. The heat of the sun makes the seeds grow faster than in spring or fall if you are diligent in doing the watering. The ideal temperature for Hydroseeding is around 80 deg. F for the initial six weeks.
Hence, you watch out for extreme cold or heat since you need to give extra effort to take care of the seeds in certain conditions. Take note that hydroseed produces a 75% germination rate because the mixture sticks to the plain soil.
The Type Of Grass You Want
Sure, the soil preparation, watering, and the plowing contributes on how long hydroseed grow. However, it all boils down to what type of grass you want for your lawn. Different types of grasses take different period to germinate.
Some grasses germinate in just a week while others may take a month to grow. Keep this in mind when estimating the time you needed.
Upon learning the different aspects, you need to consider in determining the length of time you need to wait for your hydroseed to grow. Do you already have an idea on yours? From soil preparation, hydroseed application, plowing and watering. It will take five (5) to ten (30) days before you see a glimpse of green grass in your lawn.
Grass seed germination time
Expected time (days)
5 - 10
10 - 30
14 - 30
10 - 14
10 - 14
7 - 14
14 - 30
5 - 10
7 - 14
7 - 10
7 - 12
Credit source: University of California
Recommended cutting height
University of California recommend the grass cutting height is:
- Annual ryegrass: 1.5 to 2 inches
- Hard or red fescue: 1.5 to 2.5 inches
- Colonial bentgrass: 0.5 to 1 inch
- Bermudagrass: 1 to 1.5 inches
- Kentucky bluegrass: 1.5 to 2.5 inches
- Buffalograss: 1 to 2 inches
Ways to Hydroseed, Step by Step guide
Before you decide to plant your new hydroseed lawn, make sure that you choose a flat or has minimal slope because putting it in rocky areas could cause erosion problems, drainage issues, and plant death due to extreme heat exposure.
It is best to put hydroseed in flat and well-shaded places, this way, and it will not be susceptible to extreme weather.
DO conduct a soil test before hydroseeding!
It is very important that you determine the pH level of your soil because this could affect the kind of grass seedlings that would grow. Also, if it is too acidic or not enough, you need to add some lime and fertilizer as needed.
Step 1: Site preparation
The first thing you have to do is clear the areas you want to plant and remove any plants or weeds. Make sure that the soil is soft enough for water and mulch to sink in easily.
Remove any debris, rocks, etc., that may affect the growth of your grass seedlings.
Till the area to loosen up the soil to be soft enough for the hydroseed mixture to settle in.
Adding Sand, Topsoil, and/or Wood Chips.
Adding sand is very important because it will loosen up the existing soil so the new seedlings would not be stuck to infertile soils that are not rich in nutrients.
The topsoil will help regulate drainage, while adding fertilizer helps improve soil fertility so grass seeds can grow better.
Also, wood chips add nutrition for grasses and prevent erosion of the area where you will sow your new hydroseed lawn.
You can draw lines in 3 ft. x 3ft. squares or 5 ft. x 5ft squares within the land area. The areas that are drawn on the ground are where you will be sowing each seedling.
Step 2: Mixing
The next step is mixing fertilizer, mulch, and grass seeds.
It is good to add lime or fertilizer into the mixture and stir it all to achieve a good combination.
Mulch can be anything, like wood chips or sawdust, whereas grass seedlings can be any grass you want, whether it's native grasses or not.
You have to make sure that the seedlings are mixed well enough with water before sprinkling them on top of mulch or soil.
It is easier and safer to water your lawns when you first spread the mulch and grass seeds on top instead of using a tiller.
Scotts Turf Builder Rapid Grass is a good product you can use to make a fast-growing lawn.
Step 3: Spraying
The next step is putting the hydroseed mixture into each green square that was drawn on your land.
It could take hours, depending on how much hydroseed mixture you put at one time.
Step 4: Watering
Now that everything has been established put each grass seedling only onto one square at a time. Make sure that you cover it later with a layer of mulch so it can not be seen and so the seeds will have easy access to water.
If you want, you could place a temporary fence for them to grow correctly.
The thing that grass seedlings need now is water. So keep monitoring the hydroseed materials by sprinkling more water on them if it gets dry even after 2-3 days since you last watered them.
It doesn't mean though that watering has to be done on a daily basis since water would only be wasted.
Step 5: Monitoring
Once the grass seedlings have grown at least two inches tall you will notice that your hydroseed materials are starting to look lush and green. This indicates that you should stop watering it once in a while to promote deep-rooted root growth.
Deeper roots do not mean better, but they ensure that the lawn is more resistant to extreme weather conditions such as droughts or floods because of its long root system.
The secret for success is being patient, stay there, and do not expect that everything will be done in a day or two, it could take up to almost three weeks for your hydroseed lawn area to become established. Once you are able to see real grass growing everywhere with at least three inches tall, you can claim victory!
After this step now is the time when your patience will pay off since it takes about 2-3 months until new grass becomes strong enough and can cope with wear and tear.
Keep on monitoring the health of your hydroseed lawn area by seeing if it needs any watering or fertilization because it might need more food than other plants due to being small and young. Taking care of them is the most important thing after establishing them successfully.
When is the best time to hydroseed?
An ideal time would be during spring when the temperatures are mild and there is not heavy rain expected during the days following your hydroseed job, otherwise, if you want to ensure success avoid doing it in rainy seasons and cold weather.
The best season for a hydroseed job would be spring and fall, but it all depends on your grass preference and location.
Hydroseeding Pros & Cons
Hydroseeding vs. Sod vs. Grass Seeding Cost comparison
According to HomeAdvisor:
Grass seeding average between 0.09 to 0.18 per square foot.
Hydroseeding averages between $0.06 to $0.20 per square foot.
Sod average between $1 and $2 per square foot for labor and materials.
If your passion for plants is like mine, you will enjoy growing hydroseed. How long does it take for hydroseed to grow? Now I know that it depends on how dedicated I am on sticking to the right process of taking care of the seeds.
For mine, it took eight (8) days before I saw the green grass sprouting. I used Scotts Turf Builder Grass Seed for the first time, and it worked for me. I recommend this if you have not chosen any yet.
Besides, I invested in plenty of time and effort to make it happen. Try growing yours now, and know how the excitement feels while waiting for the seed to sprout. Are you interested in planting hydroseed? Drop a comment if you have more questions and let us talk about it!