How to Lay Sod

Difficulty: Easy  |  Estimated time: Varies hours  |  Help needed: Varies volunteers

Beautify your playspace with fresh, green grass where children can run and play!

Download Instructions

Materials and tools

Quantity: Materials:
Adjust as needed Sod
2 200' tape measures
Tools needed:
Marking flags
Marking paint
String line
Knee pads
Utility knife
Sod roller

Preparation instructions

  1. Sort all materials into piles by like items to ensure you have materials needed to complete project.

  2. Before starting work, make sure the area is adequately prepared.

    • All existing grass must be removed
    • Area should have a crown or slope of 1%
    • If required, use fertilizer to raise of lower the PH of the soil
    • Create plan for maintaining and irrigating the area


  3. Measure and mark the area to be sodded. Use flags at the corners, and lay a string line down the center along both axes.

  4. Determine the total square footage of the sire. Calculate how many square feet of sod will come on each pallet. Create a plan for the placement of sod pallets on the field so that each sod pallet can cover the area around where it is placed.

  5. Based on that plan, measure and mark the area where each pallet will go. Keep the center clear, as this is where the first row of sod will go. Place extra pallets of sod around the perimeter of the field.

  6. Ensure that during sod delivery, drivers respect your layout.


Build instructions

  1. Before building, inventory and sort all of your materials.

    Quantity: Inventory:
    Adjust as needed Sod
  2. Lay down the first row of sod. Follow the string line down the center of the field to make sure it's straight.

  3. Rake out the area before laying each piece of sod to loosen the top layer of soil and optimize rooting.

  4. Work outwards from the center line towards the edges. Place each piece as closely together as possible but without overlapping, and with edges staggered like bricks.

  5. If the edges begin to line up, use the utility knife to cut a piece in half and re-stagger the edges before continuing.

  6. The utility knife can also be used to cut around sprinkler heads and other objects in the field.

  7. Once the majority of the sod has been laid, go over it with a sod roller. This removes air pockets and allows the roots of the sod to make firm contact with the soil underneath.

  8. Begin watering immediately. Aim to spread about an inch of water over the turf.