What is the Best Time to Plant Grass Seed?

Seeding the lawn can be done at any time during the year, but when is the best time to start? And what are the crucial things that need to be taken care of before seeding a lawn? Will starting in Spring work for you, or is it better to start in Autumn?

These are common questions asked by homeowners each spring as they prepare their lawns for the new growing season.

What is grass seed?

Grass seed is simply the seeds of grass. Some grass seeds may have more disease or pest resistance than others, and some might do better in sunny conditions while others prefer shade.

The most common varieties used for residential properties include Kentucky Bluegrass (Poa pratensis), Tall Fescue (Festuca arundinacea), and Ryegrass (Lolium perenne).

It is important to match the right grass seed with your climate, soil type, sun/shade exposure, and other factors.

Why should you seed your lawn?

Lawn seeding is important for a few reasons. One, it helps thicken an existing lawn. If you have thin spots in your lawn, reseeding those areas will help fill them in and make your lawn look fuller.

Two, seeding can help correct damage caused by drought, heat, or pests. When these issues occur, the grass in your yard can be killed off, which leaves open space that weeds will love to invade. By reseeding, you can help fill in those bare spots and get your lawn looking healthy again.

Why does timing matter?

The best time to seed your lawn will depend on the climate you live in and the type of grass you’re planting. The four main types of grass are cool season, warm season, transitional cool/warm, and native.

Cool season grasses do best when planted in the fall or early spring. Warm season grasses thrive when planted in late spring or summer. Transitional cool/warm plants can be seeded at any time during the year, depending on how warm it is where you live. Native grasses should only be seeded if there is an area of your yard that needs reseeding because these types of grass naturally occur in your region.

To determine what type of grass you have, take a look at the blades. If the blades are thin, then you have cool season grass. If they’re wider, then it’s most likely warm-season grass.

Factors that determine the time to plant grass seeds

Your local climate

It’s important to note that your local climate has a big impact on when to plant grass seed. If you live in a warmer climate where winters are milder and shorter, fall is the best time to plant. In cooler climates, spring is the optimal time.

How often does your yard get rain?

If you live in an area with high rainfall, then Autumn may not be the best time to seed because the soil can stay wet for weeks after seeding. In this case, spring would be a better option.

What is the temperature like in your region throughout the year?

Seeding too early or late in the year can lead to poor results, so pay attention to the temperatures when selecting a time frame for planting. When in doubt, ask your local garden center or landscaper what they recommend based on their experience with the area’s weather patterns.

Is your yard sunny or shady?

If it’s both, then you will want to know how much of each before seeding because that will determine which types of grasses work best for your lawn.

When is the last frost in your area?

You don’t want to plant seeds until after the last frost has passed. This will help ensure that your new lawn will be able to survive once it starts growing.

Are there other plants?

Finally, consider if there are any other plants growing near where you intend to plant seeds, such as trees and shrubs (which may block sunlight).

When is the best time to plant grass seed?

The answer to this question may depend on your climate and the type of grass you are trying to grow, but there are some general rules of thumb that can help.

Generally speaking, the best time to plant grass seed is in the early spring or late fall. This will give your new lawn enough time to germinate and establish before the hot summer sun, or cold winter weather arrives.

If you live in a colder climate, it may be better to wait until late fall to plant your grass seed. This will give the seeds time to germinate and grow before the ground freezes over.

If you live in a warmer climate, it may be better to plant your grass seed in the early spring. This will give the seeds time to germinate and grow before the temperatures get too hot.

However, there are always exceptions to these rules, so it is best to check with your local gardening center or agricultural extension office for specific advice about when to plant grass seed in your area.

How do I know if it’s the right time to plant grass seed?

The answer is, any time you can maintain soil temperatures above 50 degrees Fahrenheit and have adequate moisture in the soil. For a cool season grass like Kentucky Bluegrass, this can be spring or fall.

The right time to plant grass seed in most climates is late summer or early fall. The soil is still warm from the summer sun and will help the new grass seeds germinate quickly. If you live in a colder climate, wait until the ground has thawed before planting your grass seed. Springtime can also be a good time to plant grass seed in warmer climates.

Professional tips for planting grass seeds

Unless you’re a professional landscaper, it can be hard to know when the best time to plant grass seed is. When you’re ready to plant, here are some tips to help you:

  1. The first factor to consider is the weather. A good rule of thumb is to plant grass seeds during a season in which the average temperature should be between 60 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. The reason this temperature range is so important is that it allows grass seeds to develop roots and blades without having to endure too much heat or cold.
  2. Plan your planting date around the time your region gets its heaviest rainfall. It’s generally agreed that spring is the best time for most areas of the country, but if you live in an area where summer rains are common, then it’s worth waiting until then. If you’re looking for a good rule of thumb, try planting about six weeks before the season’s first frost.
  3. If you live in an area where the winters are snowy and cold, then spring might be your only option for planting grass seed. However, if you live in an area with mild winters, then fall might be a better option for planting grass seed.
  4. If you have plenty of time and want to maximize your chances of success with new grass seed, try cultivating your soil as early in the spring as possible. When you’re ready to plant, try to get your seeds into the ground around mid-spring (late March or early April). This will give them time to germinate and develop before summer temperatures start rising.
  5. The best way to know when is the best time for you to plant grass seed is by checking with a local lawn care expert or home improvement store for information about your region’s climate and rainfall patterns. If you live in an area where winters are relatively mild, then fall may be a better option than spring since it gives new grass seed more time to establish itself before winter temperatures arrive again.
  6. In order to ensure that your new grass will take root and thrive, make sure to prepare the soil before planting. Remove any existing vegetation and till the soil to a depth of six inches. Rake the area smooth and then evenly distribute the grass seed over the surface. Lightly rake or tamp down the seeds and then water the area.
  7. Once the grass has reached a height of two inches, apply a starter fertilizer to help it grow thicker and healthier.
  8. When your new lawn reaches three to four inches in height, you can begin mowing on a regular basis. Always leave your grass clippings on the ground as they will decompose and add valuable nutrients back into the soil.

If you have any questions about the best time to plant grass seed, don’t hesitate to call your local lawn care or home improvement store. When spring comes around again, they’ll be happy to help with advice on how much fertilizer and water it needs – and even what type of seeds are right for your yard.


The answer to this question depends largely on where you are located. Understanding your specific climate and geographical region is essential to knowing when the best time to plant grass seed is. We recommend that you visit your local nursery or talk with a trusted professional before planting. You will be glad you did.