3D Sod Installation & Establishment

Soil Preparation

Soil preparation is extremely important to the establishment of your sod.

  • The ground should be worked up with a tiller or an implement that loosens the top 1 or 2 inches of the soil.
  • The tilled area should then be lightly rolled with a lawn roller to firm up the soil so it won’t settle after watering the sod.
  • Rake the soil so it is 1.0 – 1.5″ below the driveway or sidewalk, 0.5″ lower than the existing grass.
  • Use rakes and or other grading equipment to level out the areas that need to have sod laid, fill in low spots, and remove high areas to ensure even grade for mowing.
  • Check with your local engineers or landscapers if there are certain grade restrictions or water easements that need to be maintained.

Turf Installation

Install your lawn immediately upon delivery. We harvest all of our sod to the order because sod is a living plant that requires ground contact and moisture to survive.

  1. Begin installing sod along a good straight edge such as a sidewalk or lot line of the property that has a string stretched from one end to the other.
  2. Lay two or three rolls of sod along the straight edge. Then go back to the start and lay another roll alongside the first roll you put down.
  3. Cut this roll in half and follow this 1/2 roll with a full one. Continue this brickwork or stair step pattern for the whole job. You may have to uncurl the inside part of the roll to make sure that the seams will butt up.
  4. Push the edges and ends against each other tightly without stretching.

When it comes to trimming, cut the sod on the back side of the roll. Use a sharp, stiff bladed knife, such as a linoleum knife or a box cutter/utility knife.

  • When you finish an area, go over it and look for small holes or seams that are wider than they should be. These can be patched with small pieces of sod from your trimmings.
  • Avoid leaving narrow strips at outer edge as they will not retain moisture.
  • On slopes, place sod across the slope.
  • If a small roller is available to you, roll the entire area to improve sod/soil contact and remove air pockets and break down any lumps or clumps.

Establishment and Maintenance

During the first three weeks, avoid heavy or concentrated use of your new lawn. This will give the roots an opportunity to firmly knit with the soil, and insures that the turf will remain smooth and level.

After 90 days your sod should be accustomed to its new home. Your practice of watering and mowing will be much different from when you first installed the sod.

Mow often, generally removing no more than 1/3 of the grass height per mowing. Keep the mower blade sharp. Fertilizer and chemical applications will depend on climate, soil, insects, weed, and disease conditions. Your new Ultra 3-D sod will require fewer inputs providing a beautiful Denser, Darker, Dwarfer sod. Most importantly, use common sense. Try not to under or over water, fertilize, or spray your lawn.

If you have any questions please contact us.


Illinois SportsTurf Managers Association
Midwest Association of Golf Course Superintendents
TPI Natural Grass Turfgrass Producers International

© Payne Sod Farm 2021 | 8332 N 2550 W Rd Manteno, IL 60950 | 815 468 6400