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Do you have to rake in grass seed?

Updated November 21, 2016

Planting grass seed is an essential part to growing a new lawn. Grass seed can be very temperamental, so it is important to follow certain steps to ensure the growth of grass. One of the main tools needed to properly grow grass is the rake. Understanding how and when to use this tool when planting seeds will increase the chance of growing a healthy bed of grass.

Prepare the Soil

Before planting grass seed, you need to prepare the soil. Purchase a pH test kit at your local landscaping store and test the chemical make-up of your soil. In order for grass to properly grow, the pH level of your soil should test between 6.0 and 7.0. If it is below this level, you need to add nutrients to your soil before planting grass seed. You need to till the soil and remove any debris like stones, weeds or other vegetation. Use a rake to even out the soil before spreading the seeds. Failure to properly prepare your soil before planting grass seeds could stunt the growth of the grass and leave bare patches.

Use a Rake to Spread the Seed

Plant the grass seeds with a mechanical spreader. Be careful not to over-seed, as an overcrowding of seeds could inhibit plant growth. Spread half of the seeds in one direction, and the second half at a 90 degree angle to the first, according to the Lawn and Mower website. This will help track your progress and make sure you do not leave any areas unseeded. Use a rake to help incorporate the seeds into the top layer of the soil. You can do this by turning the rake upside down and then gently work the seeds into the soil. Avoid long, harsh motions with the rake, as it could redistribute the seeds and cause grass to grow unevenly, according to Joseph Truini in an article for "This Old House" magazine.

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