When to Put Down Grass Seeds? What Time of Year is Best?


What month is best to plant grass seed?

If you're looking to sow some grass seeds in the UK, listen up - the perfect time to get started is in late summer to early/mid Autumn.

Why, you ask? Because grass seeds just can't resist warm and moist soil, making them sprout up like nobody's business.

But don't fret if you miss the Autumn window - you can still plant those seeds in Spring, Summer, or Autumn, but keep in mind that the weather might not be as cooperative across the entire UK.

Temperatures and weather conditions vary across the UK, for example: early Spring planting will work much better in the south west of England vs the North East of Scotland.

The ideal conditions for putting down grass seed is temperatures above 10 degrees, plenty of moisture and sunshine with no risk of snow / frost.

Curious about how to make the most of your grass seeds, no matter the season? Then keep on reading, my green-thumbed friends!

Spring is coming is your lawn ready?

What's the best grass seed to get for Spring?

Best for repairing patches: Patch Repair | Buy Now

Best for renewing my lawn: Spring lawn pack | Buy now

Best for overseeding: Regular or Large | Buy now

Best for moss & weeds: Shake no Rake | Buy now

Should you put grass seed down before it rains?

Thinking about sowing some grass seeds, but wondering whether you should wait for rain? Well, let me tell you, soil moisture is a crucial factor for successful seed planting.

Now, while using a sprinkler or watering can is an option, rain is definitely the easier choice. And let's face it, who doesn't love a little help from Mother Nature? So, if you see a forecast for some rain or showers, go ahead and take advantage of it!

But hold your horses, folks - during those sunny summer months, rainfall might not be enough to keep your lawn looking luscious. In that case, it's best to water your grass seeds with a fine spray or sprinkler to give them the best shot at thriving.

Is heavy rain bad for grass seed?

Got some grass seeds you're itching to plant, but worried about what a heavy rain might do to them? Well, I've got some news for you - it's not great.

If you're thinking of seeding your lawn, it's best to avoid planting just before a major downpour.

Why, you ask?

Because the sheer force of the water can actually move your seeds around, undoing all your hard work and leaving you with patchy, uneven growth. And let's be real, nobody wants that.

So, while a good rain is definitely helpful for getting your grass to grow, it's important to time your planting just right to avoid any unwanted washouts.

Can you plant grass seed in the winter?

Planting grass seed in the winter

Are you thinking about planting some grass seeds in the middle of winter? Well, we hate to rain on your parade, but we've got to be honest - it's not the best idea.

Sure, your seeds might still sprout, but the resulting grass is likely to be weak and stunted, thanks to those chilly soil temperatures. And while seeds can tough it out in the frost and snow, young seedlings are much more delicate, making them susceptible to getting zapped by a hard frost and leaving you with a lawn full of dead or struggling grass.

But hey, we get it - sometimes you just can't wait. In that case, we recommend using a pure Ryegrass mixture, and making sure your soil is free-draining to help your seeds along. Just keep in mind that the best results will still come from planting in Spring or Autumn, so if you can hold off, it's definitely worth the wait!

What happens if it freezes?

Ever wonder what happens to your precious grass seeds when the temperature drops below freezing? Well, we've got the inside scoop.

First off, don't worry - your seeds are hardy little guys. They can survive the freezing temps and just go dormant until Spring rolls around and it's time to start growing. The only catch? Those pesky birds might try to snack on them in the meantime.

Now, here's where things get a bit trickier. If you've got a lot of snow and fluctuating temps, that extra moisture can actually cause your grass seeds to rot before Spring arrives. And if your seeds have already sprouted into seedlings? Well, a frost can be downright deadly. The young roots are still too shallow to withstand the freeze, which means they can't take in water and will die off within just a few days.

So, while your grass seeds can handle the cold, it's important to keep an eye on the weather and take steps to protect them if needed. Happy planting!

Watch out for the birds!

If you're planning on planting some new seeds, there's one pesky predator you'll want to keep an eye out for: birds! These feathered fiends have a real taste for grass seed, and they're not afraid to chow down on your carefully-planted crop.

And here's the thing - they're even more likely to do it during the winter months, when food sources are scarce and they're looking for anything to munch on. Plus, those little seeds are easy pickings, especially if they're not covered up or otherwise protected.

So, what can you do to stop those beaked bandits from stealing your seeds? Well, there are a few tricks you can try. First, consider covering your seeded area with a thin layer of straw or hay - this will make it harder for birds to get at the seeds, while also helping to keep them warm and moist. You can also try using netting or bird repellent sprays to keep them at bay.

The bottom line? While birds may be cute, they're not always our friends when it comes to growing grass. So, be sure to take steps to protect your seeds and keep those hungry critters away.

Can you grow grass seed in the summer?

plant grass seed in summer

Yes! Here in the UK the summer can be an ideal time to put down some fresh grass seed.

That's right - despite what you may have heard, you don't have to wait until spring or Autumn to start growing your lawn.

Here in the UK, our summers can be surprisingly ideal for planting grass seed. In fact, in the northern half of the country, we often see warm, wet weather that's just perfect for getting those seeds to germinate and start growing. And even during spells of hot, dry weather, there are steps you can take to keep your new grass healthy and hydrated.

For starters, make sure you're watering your lawn consistently - use a fine rose on your watering can or a sprinkler/hose to gently hydrate your new grass without drowning it. And if you're worried about extended periods of hot, dry weather, consider opting for a drought-resistant grass seed variety. These are specifically designed to withstand the rigors of summer weather, and can help ensure your lawn stays lush and green all season long.

So, don't let anyone tell you that you can't plant grass seed in the summer! With a little care and attention, you can grow a beautiful lawn any time of year

How long does it take to grow in the summer?

You might be wondering how long it'll take to start seeing some results. Well, the good news is that if you're diligent about keeping your seedbed moist, you should start to see some progress pretty quickly.

Of course, the exact timeline can vary depending on where you're located and what the weather is like. But in general, if you're using a quick growing grass seed variety, you can expect to see some germination within about a week. That means you'll start to see little sprouts popping up out of the soil, which is always an exciting sight for any gardener!

It's worth noting, however, that just because you see some sprouts doesn't mean your lawn is fully established yet. It can take several weeks or even months for the grass to reach maturity and become truly hardy.

So, be patient and keep taking good care of your lawn - with a little luck and a lot of TLC, you'll have a gorgeous, lush lawn in no time.

What's the best grass to plant in the summer?

If you're looking to plant some grass seed this summer and wondering what the best varieties are, we've got you covered. While there are many types of grass that can thrive in the summer months, two of the most popular and effective options are Kentucky Bluegrass and Tall Fescue.

Kentucky Bluegrass is a popular choice because of its beautiful, fine-textured blades and its ability to tolerate shade. It's also fairly low-maintenance, making it a great option for those who want a nice-looking lawn without putting in a ton of work. Plus, it's drought-resistant, which is especially important in the hot summer months.

Tall Fescue, on the other hand, is known for its deep roots, which help it withstand hot, dry conditions. It's a great option for those who live in areas with long, hot summers, as it can handle the heat and still look great. It's also hard-wearing and visually appealing, making it a popular choice for sports fields and other high-traffic areas.

But why choose between the two when you can have both? Many grass seed blends combine Kentucky Bluegrass and Tall Fescue, creating a drought-resistant, visually pleasing lawn that can handle just about anything. So if you're looking for a grass seed variety that can thrive in the summer and beyond, consider giving this winning combination a try.

Water, water, water!

It's important to keep in mind that the summer sun can be quite harsh and dry out your seedbed. So, it's essential to water your lawn regularly to ensure the seeds are moist and receive enough hydration to grow properly.

While the UK summer can be quite wet, it's important to note that all that rainfall may not penetrate deep enough to nourish the roots of your new seedlings. Therefore, it's crucial to prepare your seedbed in advance by aerating it properly. Aerating the soil will ensure that the water and nutrients can penetrate deep into the soil, allowing the grass roots to grow deeper and stronger.

Remember, consistent watering is key to growing a healthy lawn in the summer months. So, keep a close eye on your seedbed and make sure to water it regularly, especially during dry spells. 

Which month in Spring is best for planting?

Sow grass seed in the Spring

Spring is a great time to plant grass seed in the UK, but the ideal month for planting will vary depending on your location. As a general rule, late March to late April is the perfect time to sow your grass seed.

However, it's important to note that the west side of the country tends to be warmer than the east, and the south tends to be warmer than the north.

To get the best possible results, you should wait until the soil temperature has reached around 10 degrees Celsius and there's no longer any risk of snow or ice.

Planting in colder temperatures can lead to weaker grass that is more susceptible to disease and pests. Additionally, be sure to choose a grass seed mix that is appropriate for your region and your specific lawn conditions.

Watch out for cold & frost!

Brrr...watch out for those frosty mornings!

One of the biggest challenges of planting grass seed in the Spring here in the UK is the dreaded late frost. And the further north you go, the higher the chances of experiencing a late Spring freeze or even snowfall. So if you're planning to plant in the north, it's best to wait a little longer until the risk of frost has passed.

Late April to early May is a safer bet for planting in the north, while in the south you can start as early as late March. But no matter where you are, make sure the soil temperature is around 10 degrees Celsius for the best results.

Weeds can be a problem

Spring is a time when weeds can become a significant problem for those planting grass seed. These unwanted plants have been lying dormant throughout the winter, waiting for the perfect conditions to emerge. As soon as the warmer temperatures and increased rainfall of spring arrive, they will start to grow and compete with your newly sown grass seed for nutrients and space.

Some of the most common weeds that you may encounter in the spring include dandelions, clover, chickweed, and crabgrass. These can quickly take over and suffocate your newly planted grass, reducing the overall quality and appearance of your lawn.

To combat this problem, it's essential to be vigilant and keep a close eye on your lawn during the early stages of growth. Consider using a pre-emergent herbicide to prevent weed seeds from germinating, or be prepared to manually remove any weeds as soon as they appear.

Why is Autumn best for putting down grass seed?

Why Autumn is good for planting grass seeds

Autumn is the best time to plant grass seeds because of the favourable weather conditions. The soil is still warm enough to promote seed growth but with less chance of frost, which can damage or kill young seedlings. Additionally, autumn brings more rainfall and less evaporation than summer, which ensures adequate moisture for the seeds to germinate and grow.

Another benefit of planting in the autumn is that many weed species have already gone to seed or are dying off, reducing competition for the newly planted grass.

Plus, you have the entire growing season to tend to your lawn and get rid of any weeds that may emerge before the next spring planting season.

Finally, you can enjoy your lawn during the summer without worrying about damaging the seedlings by stepping on them, as they will have already had several months to establish and grow strong roots.

When is the best time?

When it comes to sowing grass seed in autumn, the timing is crucial for the success of your lawn. Mid to late September is typically considered the best time to sow grass seed in autumn. During this time, the soil is still warm enough to allow for seed germination, but the air temperature has cooled down, reducing the risk of seedlings being damaged by the heat.

By sowing in mid to late September, you'll also give your grass seed plenty of time to establish before the cold winter weather sets in. This allows for a stronger root system to develop, making your lawn more resilient to harsh winter conditions. It's important to keep the soil moist during the germination period, but there's usually enough rainfall in autumn to help with this.

If you sow your grass seed too late in autumn, the seedlings may not have enough time to establish before winter arrives. On the other hand, if you sow too early in autumn, the soil may still be too warm, leading to poor seed germination. By aiming for mid to late September, you'll be giving your grass seed the best chance for success.

Remember to fertilise

Grass seed requires proper nutrition to thrive, and fertilisation is a key aspect of lawn maintenance. By fertilising your lawn, you can ensure that your grass is receiving the necessary nutrients to grow thick and healthy.

In addition to preventing problems such as moss, weeds, and dying grass, fertilization can also help your lawn resist disease, tolerate environmental stress, and withstand heavy foot traffic.

As for the best time to fertilize your lawn, it largely depends on the type of grass you have and the climate in your area. However, as a general rule, fertilising in early Autumn & late Spring can be very effective as it provides the grass with the nutrients it needs to recover from summer stress, prepare for winter dormancy and develop strong roots for the Summer.

If you have any questions about your lawn or any other aspect of planting grass seed, feel free to leave a comment below - we're always here to help.

Spring is coming is your lawn ready?

What's the best grass seed to get for Spring?

Best for repairing patches: Patch Repair | Buy Now

Best for renewing my lawn: Spring lawn pack | Buy now

Best for overseeding: Regular or Large | Buy now

Best for moss & weeds: Shake no Rake | Buy now

About the author 


Hey there, I am founder and editor in chief here at Good Grow. I guess I've always known I was going to be a gardener. I'm on a mission to share my UK based weed control & lawn care tips with you all. If you have any queries please post in the comments below.

  • Hi,
    I plan to lay 2 tonnes of top soil to level my existing lawn. My existing lawn has grass but it is poor quality and patchy.
    Should I mix my seed into the topsoil or sprinkle on top after I have levelled it?
    Should I compress the top soil with a heavy roller (or similar)?
    Should I add fertiliser at the same time as sowing the seed?
    Any advise you can offer would be appreciated

    • Yes it is fine to sprinkle it on top and use a roller so that the seed has good contact with the soil. Use the fertiliser before putting down the seed and let it dissolve first.

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