What’s the Difference between Sod and Seed for New Lawns?

There is something tricky about gardening. There are plenty of questions running through your mind yet the answers tend to be very vague. Most of the time, there is also no wrong or right answer and it is only a matter of knowing what suits you best. One question that always fills the mind of gardeners is the difference between sod and seed for their new lawns. 

Below are some important things you might want to know to help you decide if you should buy sod or seed.


  • Sod offers instant gratification. If you have plans to hold an event in your garden, sod can be laid down on the week of your party. 
  • Many garden stores offer just one type of sod. It is likely the type recommended for your place so you won’t have many options for varieties. 
  • Sod can be laid down at any given time during gardening season. 
  • Sod is free from weeds.
  • Sod is a form of crop that grows in the sun. If you purchase sod to place in shady spot, it needs to adapt to the environment.
  • Sod comes with a higher price than seed. 


  • It can be very satisfying to grow anything from seed but it can take time. You need to  live with the bare dirt for some time and you also have to limit walking on your lawn as the grass is established. 
  • There is a wide selection of grass blends and types for you to choose from. You can search online for suggestions from the local extension experts and have this list of recommendations with you when you go shopping. A crucial consideration is if your grass will grow in part shade or full sun. 
  • Timing is important. Sow seed for the cool season lawns, or the lawns that remain green during winter months, during early fall or late summer. Warm season lawns that are dormant during colder months must be seeded during summer or spring. 
  • You should watch out for weeds until grass has taken hold.
  • Sowing seed is the cheapest way to start your own lawn.

Watering is critical after you lay sod or sow seed. Seeds must be watered on a regular basis and in a light manner every two days. Deep soaking must be avoided. On the other hand, sod must be watered properly as soon as you lay it down. It should be kept moist for several weeks without being soggy until roots have been knitted to the soil. You can peel up one corner of sod you can monitor the roots.  

If you are the kind of gardener who loves taking on challenges or you are on a tight budget, you will be better off with planting seeds. You will have fun during the process and you can even see the progress you make every day once the seeds start sprouting and growing. 

On the other hand, if you are not confident with planting seeds or you are in a hurry, go for sod. In both cases, careful watering is the key to the success of your gardening venture. With the use of the right tools, you will surely cultivate a lawn you can proudly show off to everyone!