Congratulations on your new lawn! You’ve finally gotten all the hard installation work done and now all that’s left is taking care of the sod during establishment. For many of us, this is a huge priority after investing so much into a living product.
New sod care is different from established sod care. Applying a weed control product on a new lawn will have different effects than applications on an established lawn. Follow our establishment guidelines for the first 30 days after installation and then transition your lawn to a normal maintenance schedule.
When can I apply weed control products to my new sod?
Newly installed sod is vulnerable to external stressors until it has had time to properly establish. This can include weather, drought, disease outbreaks, insect infestations, fertilizer burns and weeds.
For this reason, applying weed control products to your new sod isn’t recommended. Instead, it’s best to hand remove them until you’ve mowed your lawn at least 3–4 times. With that being said, you shouldn’t mow your new sod at all until at least two weeks from installation have passed. Learn more here.
After you’ve mowed your lawn somewhere between 3–4 times, you may use a high quality weed control product to spot-treat weeds in your new lawn.
Which weed control products can I apply to my new sod?
After the above allotted time has passed, you can use a high quality, selective post-emergent herbicide to spot-treat any currently existing weeds. Selective herbicides, as opposed to non-selectives, only kill the weeds listed on their product labels. Non-selectives will kill any and all vegetation it comes in contact with—so stay away from these. A popular non-selective herbicide is glyphosate.
Additionally, post-emergent herbicides kill currently existing weeds. Pre-emergents, on the other hand, are used to prevent weeds before they appear.
Lastly, spot-treating entails using a liquid herbicide mixed in a spray tank with an attached nozzle or a syringe to apply the herbicide directly onto that weed. This reduces how much formulation comes into contact with your new sod.
Take a look at a few top suggestions below. It should be noted that Tenacity should be used with Hi-Yield Spreader Sticker to help the formulation stick to the weeds’ leaves for quicker elimination.
Can I apply a pre-emergent to my new sod?
If you can’t apply a post-emergent herbicide to your new sod until you’ve mowed at least 3–4 times, maybe you’re wondering if you can apply a pre-emergent to prevent the weeds from showing up in the first place. As previously mentioned, pre-emergents prevent weeds while post-emergents treat current weeds.
Pre-emergents are not good for newly establishing sod. It will damage the sod root growth and maybe even kill your lawn. You can only safely apply a pre-emergent herbicide to your lawn after a full growing season has passed (3–6 months). By this time, you’ll be able to apply a post-emergent to control any weeds that pop up in the meantime.
Besides, there is no reason to use pre-emergent on newly laid sod if you’ve taken all the proper steps prior to putting the sod down. You should’ve already sprayed out all the pre-existing weeds when you apply a non-selective herbicide to kill the old sod before installation.
There could be few weeds that survive. As previously mentioned, those that do survive are easily pulled by hand or controlled with a post-emergent later. See our installation guide for more details.
It should be noted that Tenacity is one of our recommended spot-treating weed control products. It’s also both a pre- and post-emergent herbicide. It can still be used at the same mix rate of 0.5 an inch/gallon, but we suggest combining it with a non-ionic surfactant to help the formulation stick to the leaves of the weed and eliminate them quicker.
Should I apply a pre-emergent before laying new sod?
No. The non-selective herbicide you should’ve applied when you’re removing the old sod should’ve killed off all of the weeds. The few that might survive can be hand-pulled or killed with a post-emergent later.
How do I stop weeds from growing in my new sod?
As mentioned above, if you’ve taken all the proper steps prior to putting new sod down, you should’ve already sprayed out all the pre-existing weeds when you apply a non-selective herbicide to kill the old sod.
Few, if any weeds survive, can be easily pulled by hand or controlled with a post-emergent later.