Can You Lay Sod Over Existing Grass?

Published Categorized as Sod & Seed

Having an appealing and healthy lawn is one thing that gives homeowners ecstasy. This pristine grass encourages more outdoor time for every family. It’s a great disappointment for everyone when that grass starts to thin out or die. When this happens, families think of how to save time and evade this back-breaking task of laying new sod. That’s when some people start laying new sod over existing grass. But is this a good idea? Read on.

Can You Lay Sod Over Existing Grass?

It’s not a good idea to lay sod over existing grass. This may result in germination and drainage issues, the death of your new sod, a choppy appearance, and the re-emergence of weeds.

Although laying new sod over the existing one may seem like a great shortcut, the grass might die after a week. Keep reading to see why.

1. Germination Problem

When you lay sod over existing grass, your sod might not germinate or take root. This is due to a lack of contact between the soil beneath and the grass.

2. It Increases the Chances of Sod to Die

New sod requires nutrients and water to develop roots and grow. These requirements are all in the soil. It’s hard for the sod to reach the ground when it’s on top of the existing turf. For this reason, it will be hard for the new sod to survive.

3. Old Weeds Will Reappear

Laying sod over existing grass will definitely kill that previous grass. However, the weeds will resurface due to their resilient nature. The weeds will pop up through your expensive new sod hence damaging it.

4. The New Sod Will Appear Choppy

If you lay sod over existing grass, some parts, especially the damaged ones, might survive. However, some sections will be taller than others, hence a choppy appearance.

5. Drainage Problem

New sod and established ones have different drainage requirements. That’s why you need to prepare the soil first before laying new sod. This practice will help prevent the competition for water between the new and existing sod. The competition might lead to drainage problems, hence killing your brand-new grass.

What You Should Do Instead

Can You Lay Sod Over Existing Grass

Laying sod over existing grass might ruin so many things. Therefore, the best thing is to remove the existing lawn first for the soil to be in contact with the sod.

Also, it would be best if you eliminate all drainage obstacles like roots and rocks. After that, loosen the soil and level the ground. Finally, lay your new sod and water it twice a day. You’ll have a healthier, more attractive, and resilient lawn.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q: Can you lay sod next to the grass?

A: The answer is yes. You don’t have to lay a whole new lawn if your grass has a few damaged areas. However, be careful when doing so. First, make sure you buy the same grass variety. Next, remove the oddly shaped and dead turf. Loosen the soil in the area, lay the new grass, and water it well for at least two weeks.

Q: Do I need to remove grass and weeds before adding sod?

A: Getting rid of the current turf and weeds is crucial before laying new sod. This action helps ensure that the existing weeds and grass won’t resurface and infiltrate your new sod.

Q: How long does it take for the sod to root?

A:  New sods take about six weeks to develop healthy roots. However, you need to water the lawn regularly for proper rooting. You should water your newly laid sod twice daily, morning and evening. After a few weeks – when the sod establishes shallow roots – decrease the number of watering per day to only morning hours. This procedure encourages the roots to keep growing deeper as they search for water.


Laying sod over existing grass is a bad idea. Your brand-new sod might die or grow with a choppy appearance. Also, the practice may lead to germination and drainage problems, and the resurfacing of weeds. Therefore, remove the existing grass before laying new sod.

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By Wycliffe Magara

Hi, my name’s Wycliffe Magara, a professional landscaper, journalist, published author, photographer, and lawn attendant. Apart from this site, I also own LawnAffection, Grasstology, and TheScholarshipTipster. I specialize in creating informational content to help you grow a Lifelong Lush Lawn and find the ideal scholarship opportunities no one ever talks about.