Can You Overwater Grass Seed?

Can You Overwater Grass Seed

Can You Overwater Grass Seed? That’s one of the questions I often get asked by my friends. So, I figured out that some of you might actually have the same concerns too.

Imagine spending all that time carefully setting up your broadcast spreader to get an even distribution of seed on your lawn, only to finally have all your seeds die because you ended up overwatering them.

That’s a situation we all want to avoid.

Yes, you can overwater grass seeds. However, that isn’t all the answer you need to know.

Once you know that you can overwater it, you need to know how much water is too much, and how to avoid doing it. So, that’s what we’ll be showing you in today’s article here at Turf Mechanic.

Are you ready? Then what are we waiting for?

How Much Water Does Grass Seed Need?

Grass seed is just like any other kind of seed. It needs to stay moist almost constantly to germinate. If the seed dries out it will “die” and if it is waterlogged it will not germinate reliably and/or it will wash away.

When I put down seed I always follow a strict regimen to ensure the seed puts down roots. I setup a dedicated misting hose to the seed patch area that is on a timer set to go off a bunch of times throughout the day. If it’s hot out it will go off more frequently (every hour or so) and if it’s cool and cloudy out it will go off less frequently (every few hours or so).

The secret for me is the misting hose which will let all the seed get moist without disturbing the seed or the soil around it in any way.

This misting hose can be directed directly towards the seeds to ensure they get wet.

If you hook a timer like this one up to the hose that can go off six times a day then you will probably get great germination fairly quickly.

The fact of the matter is that grass seeds need water, and they need water frequently. Simply watering them just once or twice a day isn’t enough and it sure can’t be considered overwatering… unless you are watering for too long each cycle.

How Soft Should the Ground Be

Since they need the earth to be soft enough, watering it again and again is necessary. Multiple short cycles per day help newly formed roots penetrate the ground forming the foundation for healthy turf grass.

However, what is considered overwatering is actually making a puddle instead of only making the soil wet.

Quoting SFGATE,

If puddles form when you water your grass or the soil becomes soggy and waterlogged, you’re over-watering and your new grass may pay the price. While new grass needs water to grow and establish deep roots, too much water can cause problems that end up hurting your grass.

So, yes, you can overwater grass seeds. However, there are several things that can happen because of overwatering, such as:

  • The seeds might actually have adverse effects because of being lodged in water- not all plants can stand that much water. This is one of the things you must consider, because, some seeds will actually die if you keep them water lodged for too long. So, be sure not to actually keep them waterlogged for too long.
  • The seeds can also be displaced because of too much water. Should the seeds be displaced, the growth pattern won’t be the same as when you sowed them.
  • Excess watering can even move the soil! This would also end up moving your seeds or displacing them in a way that they might not be ultimately able to germinate properly. For example, the seeds or newly germinated plants might be buried under the soil, cut off from sunlight, which would ultimately kill them. So, the best way to avoid this is to be careful when watering them.
  • Again, there are several bacteria and fungi that grow much faster when the place is water-lodged. This is again something that you want to avoid, because these would then act upon your seeds. And that is not a good thing, because they might actually end up damaging, or even killing the seeds.

Can you Underwater Grass Seeds?

Naturally, overwatering isn’t the only thing that might happen. Should you be cautious and end up watering it too little, you might actually underwater it! That would mean, that the seeds will slowly start to show lesser signs of vitality, and finally dry up.

Should the seed dry up, it might actually die. So, underwatering is equally harmful because it might also make your seeds die! So, keeping an eye out on the amount of water you’re using is absolutely indispensable if you want to keep them healthy. A healthy lawn needs a lot more care than is apparent from the looks of it, to be honest. So, you can’t really shy away from work if you plan to get a beautiful lawn!

See my full grass growing guide here for more helpful tips – no opt-in needed.

How to strike the right balance when it comes to watering?

Striking the right balance is essential if you want healthy plants and a healthy lawn. So, you need to consider several factors in order to determine the right amount of water. The main points that you might want to consider are:

  • Slope of Land: First you must understand that the slope of the land is actually a really serious thing. It is really important in determining the amount of water you should use. The higher the slope, the more water you generally need. You might learn more about growing grass on a steep hill from our article here.
  • Climate: Another major factor that you simply cannot ignore is the overall climate. The amount of rainfall is of special importance because it determines the amount of water you should use. Naturally, the more the rainfall, the lesser the amount of water you should use, and vice versa. Again, you might also want to keep in mind the overall temperature level and sunlight level. It is essential to consider the rates of transpiration before watering the plants in order to strike the right balance.
  • The exact species you’re using: Even when it comes to grass,  there are several varieties. Now, each variety has a different definition for an equilibrium level of water. You might want to do your research on this. You need to find out the exact amount of water the seeds you selected need. And only by using water in accordance with this can you actually use the right amount of water.
  • Keep record of your watering: One mistake a lot of us do, at least during the initial stage, is ending up watering at least once extra a day. This is a major mistake, and your seeds might have to pay the price for it. So, that’s something you want to avoid. To avoid this mistake, keeping track of the number of times you water your lawn is the best method. Try to write down whenever you water your lawn, to always know how many times you’ve done it already.
  • Not watering too much at once: Again, some people don’t divide the watering properly. You need to give the soil enough time to soak the water. If you water the ground too much at once, it doesn’t really get the time to do that, and puddles form. This is a serious mistake, and you might want to avoid it all costs if you want to keep your seeds healthy.
  • Keep and eye out for the health of seeds/shoots: Another way to know how it’s all going is to keep an eye out on the health of your seeds/shoots. If they don’t start to grow even when it’s time for them to grow, or show stunted growth, you might want to do your research as to why that’s happening. Generally, underwatering is the leading reason for low growth, and not overwatering.


All in all, if you keep these points in mind, it would not be too hard for you to water the plants properly. You might also want to check our article on “How Long to Water Grass Seeds With Sprinkler Heads” if you’re interested in doing a little more research. It is really recommended that you do your research to ensure that your seeds can remain healthy and you can have a beautiful lawn.

There are a handful of things that you can do to have the beautiful lawn you’re trying to get.The main things that you might want to do, are as follows:

  • Be vigilant: The first thing is to actually be vigilant. You need to be on the lookout for the slightest symptoms of problems. You also need to be on the lookout for anything else that might harm your seeds.
  • Be patient: Seeds don’t sprout in a day, it takes time. If you rush and water them too much, you are bound to end up overwatering them. Being patient is the only thing that is going to pay off, so that’s the wisest choice here.
  • Know your plant: Knowing your plant is essential in order to actually take care of it. You need to know about how much water it needs, how much temperature it can stand, how long it takes to grow etc. So, knowing about it is absolutely indispensable.
  • Do your research: Next, you need to actually do your research. It is also important to know anything related to what you’re trying to do in order to do it properly. Hence, it’s advised that you try to find out about the other conditions as well as symbols that would help you understand the situation more. You might also want to do your research on better methods of taking care of your plants.
  • Keep checking out Turf Mechanic: We here at Turf Mechanic always try to provide you with the best information to help you out. So, you might want to keep checking back frequently for the right information to help you out. Here’s a related article you might want to check out: How to Keep Birds From Eating Grass Seeds?

Turf Mechanic is here for you!

So, now you know the things that you need to keep in mind. If you always try to think from this perspective, and if everything goes well, there shouldn’t be a problem. At the end of the day, you should have your lawn prepared and you can have fun in there with your loved ones!

We thank you from the core of our heart for taking your time to read this article till the very end. Hopefully, you liked this article and would check out the other articles on our site, because those are also designed to be informative enough to help you out in situations such as this one.

We understand that you might still have a few questions for us. Always on the lookout to help you out, we encourage you to reach out to us if you have any queries for us! We promise to try our best to help you out with the best information we have! Once again, we thank you for taking your time to read this article, and we really hope to see you again on our next article! Till then, Turf Mechanic takes your leave!