HandyHomeMasterBloghttps://handyhomemaster.com/how-to-grow-grass-in-clay-soil/How To Grow Grass In Clay Soil

How to Transform Your Clay Soils into A Green Grass Lawn

Last Updated: 26 April 2021

Handy Home Master created for informational purposes only. Thus, we neither endorse you in any way to buy specific products in our reviews, nor making you act like it’s written in our guides. We are reserving the rights for you to make your personal decision.



Editor-in-Chief of the Handy Home Master

A green grass lawn always stands as welcoming and has a high hand in relieving your whole-day-long stress by its eye-pleasing effect. Also, it can hike up the overall appearance of your home aesthetics.

But the question is, how can one get a perfectly green lawn with clay soil in the garden? So here is a quick guide that will get you acquainted with all the basics of how to grow grass in clay soil.

Will grass grow in clay

What grass grows best in clay soil

Clay soil may be hard to work with and can give you a tough time in the plantation. But despite the challenges one may face while doing the same, it is quite possible to plant grass on clay soil.

It may demand some extra efforts from the homeowners’ side, but it can promise you a great and visually pleasing lawn.

What grass grows best in clay soil

Not all grasses can grow well in clay soil. Consider planting buffalo grass and Bermuda grass to see the best results. Buffalo grasses are drought tolerant and have a deep root system. This system allows it to be dormant during the winters and starts greening up during summers.

Bermuda grass is the carpet grass that you usually get to see on golf courses and parks and have the ability to tolerate clay owing to its root system that ejects deep rhizomes.

Growing grass in clay soil: equipment you need

Here are a few gardening tools and other essentials for growing grass that you will need to kick start the grass plantation:

  • Shovel
  • Tiler
  • Straw mulch
  • Lawn roller
  • Tape measure
  • Sprinkler
  • Small can
  • Organic Compost

Growing grass in clay soil: The process

Barren lawns can be filled with an oomph factor by adding green to it. All you need to do is use the stubborn clay soil to plant grass and see how your barren lands gain the vibrancy to bestow a jaw-dropping green palette.

So if you are looking out for ways on how to how to grow grass in clay soil, here is how you can get started:

Test soil density

Test soil density

You may have a look at the soil and easily determine if it is clay or not. But apart from this traditional method, determination of the soil density is also mandatory.

You can either consider going for a professional soil density test or can perform it on your own by adding a few water drops to half a cup scooped out the soil. Ensure that you do not add too much water.

Now transform the wet clay into a small ball and further press it into a ribbon’s shape. Now while transforming it into a ribbon if the soil breaks when it is somewhere between the length of 1 and 2 inches, you have clay loam in your hands.

But if you are capable of molding the soil into a ribbon that can lengthen beyond two inches, you have heavier clay.

Scotts Turf Builder Thick'R Lawn Sun & Shade - 3 in 1 Lawn Fertilizer, Seed, & Soil Improver for a Thicker, Greener Lawn, Seeds up to 4,000 Sq Ft, 40 Lb
  • 3-in-1 solution for thin lawns, including seed, fertilizer and soil improver
  • Seed to fill gaps in your current lawn
  • Fertilizer for thicker, greener turf
  • Soil improver for enhanced root development
  • Get up to a 50% thicker lawn with just one easy application with a spreader (subject to proper care; results may vary based on the current condition of the lawn)

Treat clay soil

Treat clay soil

Once the soil density is calculated, the next step is to treat the clay so that it becomes ideal for grass plantation. Spreading organic compost on the soil can help achieve this task.

The compost should be ideally tilled to 6 inches if not much of clay is present and can be increased to 8 inches for heavy clay. A yard rototiller can be used to further break down the compact clay soil. Once this is done, leave the earth to rest for eight weeks.

Retest soil

Treating the soil is not all; you are also required to perform the ball test after two months. If the treated soil is now able to enhance the soil quality, it won’t be able to transform itself into a long ribbon.

And if you find that still, the earth forms a long ribbon, then you have to do some more hard work by again repeating the process of amending the soil by adding organic compounds to it. Further, you may need to repeat the ball test to be assured of the soil quality

Measure the area

Determining the area where you will be planting the grass is necessary because it will help you gain a brief idea about the seeds you will need for the plantation. This will further cut down the wastage of seeds.

Plant grass

Firstly, you need to segregate the desired quantity of seeds into two portions. Further, you can take one portion of the seeds and spread it in a vertical path. Next, the left out seeds should be laid in a direction perpendicular to the previously spread seeds to ensure even spreading.

Once you complete this, the planted area should be rolled using a lawnmower for the finishing touch.

Moisten the area

Once you have planted the grass, you can use a sprinkler for the best results and effectiveness. It is advisable to use moisture meter for better control.

Consider applying water at least two times in a day but also ensure that you do not over-saturate the planted area with water.

Tips for growing grass in clay soil

Now since you know how to grow grass in clay soil, here are a few more tips that you can consider keeping in mind for the best results:

Tips for growing grass in clay soil
  • If you plan to plant cool-season grass, consider planting it during the spring or fall season. One can choose to plant various grass variants ranging from colonial bentgrass, perennial ryegrass, hard and red fescue, etc.
  • If you wish to plant plugs or any other warm-season grasses, late springs and early summer is the best time to do the same. Buffalo grass, Bermuda grass, Saint Augustine grass, Zoysia, etc. can be great options to plant warm-season grasses.
  • Always consider keeping the grass length between 6 and 8 cm, since regular cutting will help promote grass growth. Also, it will prevent the grass from weeds and pest attacks.
  • Use compost for your grass lawns to provide them with nutrients.
Scotts Turf Builder Grass Seed Bermudagrass, 10 lb. - Full Sun - Built to Stand up to Scorching Heat and Drought - Aggressively Spreads to Grow a Thick, Durable Lawn - Seeds up to 10,000 sq. ft.
  • Designed for full sun, high traffic areas, and draught resistance
  • Exclusive 4 in 1 WaterSmart PLUS Coating absorbs more water, feeds with essential nutrients and protects seedlings from disease
  • Includes Scotts best seed, protects against disease, keeps seed moist 2x longer & feeds to jumpstart growth for thicker, greener grass,
  • Aggressively spreads to fill in bare spots and crowd out weeds
  • Great for lawns challenged by long periods of scorching southern heat, drought, and bare spots

You can also consider getting the best weed and feed for southern lawns for more effective results.

Wrapping up

Growing grass may appear tedious at the first spot, but it is worth all the efforts and hard work to get a green and florid lawn. Following the above mentioned easy steps can help you grow grass in clay without facing any hassles.

We hope that this article has stirred out all the odds and gives you a clear idea of how to go about with the grass plantation. So what are you waiting for? Go ahead and get your dream lawns to transform into a reality.

Lawn care Tips
Share your thoghts
Please fill required fields
Please fill required fields
Please fill required fields