Grass Seed vs Turf

Grass Seed vs Turf: Choosing the Best Option for Your Lawn

Grass Seed vs Turf

When it comes to repairing or replacing a lawn, there are two main options: planting grass seed or laying new turf. Each option has its own set of pros and cons, and the decision ultimately depends on your budget and specific situation.

If you’re considering planting grass seed, it’s important to choose the right type of seed for your lawn. Our article on choosing the right grass seed provides helpful tips and information on finding the best fit for your needs. Additionally, we’ve included a video on using grass seed to make your own lawn, which can be a great DIY project for those looking to save money. On the other hand, if you’re looking for a quick fix and have a larger budget, laying new turf may be the better option for you.

Key Takeaways

  • Repairing or replacing a lawn can be done through planting grass seed or laying new turf.
  • Choosing the right type of grass seed is important for successful growth.
  • Laying new turf is a quick fix for those with a larger budget.



Grass Seed vs Turf Choosing the Best Option for Your Lawn

Planting grass seed can be a cost-effective option for those on a budget. Unlike turf, you won’t have to pay for the labour and time that goes into growing it. With a wider variety of grass seed available, you’re more likely to find the most suitable grass type for your lawn’s specific conditions and preferences. For example, if your lawn gets a lot of shade, you can choose a grass seed that is more tolerant to shade.

Grass seed is ideal for small fixes or areas in your lawn. It’s easy to spread, lightweight, and can be sown in a short period of time. You can also keep extra seed in your shed or garage for future repairs, which isn’t possible with turf.

For keen gardeners, planting grass seed can be a satisfying challenge. The process is clean and can be carried out at your convenience, unlike turf which needs to be laid soon after delivery regardless of weather conditions.


Growing grass from seed takes time and patience. It can take a couple of months to establish and will require focused care and attention for at least the first 3-4 months. During the first month, you will need to take much more care of your grass-seeded lawn compared to turf as its root system is much more established. With grass seed, you will need to wait for at least 6 months before you start using it normally.

Grass seed is vulnerable to heavy rain, which can wash it away on slopes resulting in bare patches and uneven coverage. Birds are also prone to eating grass seed, so extra time will be needed to implement some method of protection. Other animals will also need to be kept off the lawn while it is establishing.

Weeds can invade the lawn during the first month of growth because the soil is open. Not all grass seed is equal, so it’s important to purchase good quality branded grass lawn seed from a reputable manufacturer. This may cost a little more than cheap grass seed, but it will be money well spent in the long term.

Sowing grass seed by hand can result in uneven coverage. Investing in a good lawn grass seed spreader can ensure a consistent and even coverage. Regular watering is also necessary for the grass seed to establish, otherwise it will quickly wither and die.

In summary, grass seed can be a cost-effective and satisfying option for those who are willing to invest time and energy into growing their lawn. However, it requires attention and care during the establishment period, and the quality of the grass seed and sowing method can significantly impact the final result.

Using Grass Seed to Make Your Own Lawn Video

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When it comes to creating a new lawn, laying turf has many advantages. Here are some of the pros:

  • Quick and instant results. Laying turf provides instant results. After the turf has been laid on prepared soil, you are pretty much able to use the lawn as normal within a month or so.
  • More tolerant to rain. If you have periods of heavy rain, then the turf won’t wash off slopes like grass seed would.
  • Doesn’t need as much water. As there is no need for growth, you don’t need to water as much as you would with grass seed. However, the turf will need to remain moist, otherwise, it will shrink and gaps will start appearing between the layers.
  • Effective remedy. If your lawn has sunken over the years, during the preparation stage, laying turf is a good opportunity to level it with topsoil or compost. Any soil imperfections will be immediately covered by your new lush turf.
  • Try before you buy. You can see and feel the type of turf before your purchase. There are many different types of turf, different colours and textures to suit your needs.


However, there are also some downsides to laying turf. Here are some of the cons:

  • Cost. Buying lawn turf can be very expensive, especially when compared to grass seed.
  • Limited choice. There isn’t as much choice when laying turf compared to grass seed, so you might find it difficult to find something that suits you. Remember, high street garden centres will only stock one type of turf, so you may be better off purchasing from a dedicated turf specialist.
  • Labour. Laying turf is much more difficult and labour-intensive compared to grass seed. Also, the rolls of turf are heavy and difficult to move around, especially when your garden isn’t the easiest to reach.
  • Transport. Turf is heavy and dirty. If you are going to collect it from a local store, you are going to need a van for transportation. If your lawn is tiny, then you may get away with transporting the turf in an estate car, but just remember to take a sheet or blanket as the turf tends to crumble. You may decide to have it delivered to your house, which may add an additional cost.
  • Limited shelf life. Turf has a limited shelf life as it can quickly dry out, especially in warm conditions. You will need to lay the turf shortly after delivery, regardless of the weather conditions. Little know-how will also be needed to ensure the turf is laid correctly. In particular, there should be no gaps left between the rolls of turf, and they should be butted up to each other tightly (no overlapping). You should use boards or planks for walkways.
  • Disposal of excess turf. You will always have to order more turf than you need, but just try to keep it to a minimum by measuring precisely before purchasing. Excess turf can be disposed of on your compost heap, but be careful not to put too much in your garden waste bin, as it may make it too heavy and the council may refuse to take it.
  • Watering. Daily watering will be needed for the turf to get established.

In conclusion, laying turf has its advantages and disadvantages. It provides an instant lawn with a flawless appearance, but it can be costly, labour-intensive, and requires proper maintenance. It is important to consider all factors before deciding to lay turf.

Using Grass Seed to Make Your Own Lawn Video

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the cost comparisons between laying turf and sowing grass seed in the UK?

When it comes to cost, sowing grass seed is generally cheaper than laying turf in the UK. The cost of turf depends on the quality, quantity, and delivery fees, which can add up quickly. On the other hand, grass seed can be purchased in bulk and is relatively inexpensive.

When is the ideal time to either lay turf or sow grass seed?

The ideal time to lay turf or sow grass seed in the UK is during the autumn or spring months. The temperature and rainfall during these seasons are optimal for grass growth, and it allows the grass to establish before the harsh winter or summer months.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of choosing turf over grass seed?

One of the main advantages of choosing turf over grass seed is the instant gratification of having a lush green lawn. Turf is also easier to install, and it provides an even surface. However, turf is more expensive than grass seed, and it requires more maintenance in the long run. Grass seed, on the other hand, takes longer to grow, but it is more cost-effective and requires less maintenance.

Can turf be laid on top of an area that has been previously seeded?

It is not recommended to lay turf on top of an area that has been previously seeded. The existing grass will compete with the new turf for nutrients and water, which can result in patchy and uneven growth. It is best to remove the existing grass and prepare the soil before laying new turf.

Is investing in high-quality turf more beneficial than using grass seed?

Investing in high-quality turf can be more beneficial than using grass seed in the long run. High-quality turf is more resistant to disease, pests, and drought, and it requires less maintenance. However, it is more expensive than regular turf or grass seed.

What distinguishes lawn seed from other types of grass seed?

Lawn seed is a type of grass seed that is specifically designed for creating a lawn. It is a blend of different grass species that are chosen for their ability to grow well together and provide a lush, green lawn. Lawn seed is also formulated to be more resistant to disease, pests, and drought, which makes it ideal for creating a low-maintenance lawn.


Lawnmower Product Expert, Reviewer and Author at | 01284 615144 | | Website | + posts

As a seasoned expert in the field of garden power tools, I have dedicated over a decade to working with and reviewing a wide variety of lawn mowers. My extensive experience has allowed me to gain a deep understanding of the benefits and limitations of different types of mowers and garden tools.

Over the years, I have honed my skills in writing informative articles and creating helpful videos for various blogs and publications. This has given me the ability to not only recognise what makes a good lawn mower, but also to help you choose the perfect garden tool for your specific needs and requirements.

With my wealth of knowledge and expertise, I am confident that I can provide you with valuable insights and recommendations when it comes to selecting the right lawn mower for your lawn. So, whether you're looking for a battery cordless, electric, petrol, or robotic mower, you can trust in my expertise to guide you towards the best option for your garden.

4 thoughts on “Grass Seed vs Turf: Choosing the Best Option for Your Lawn”

  1. Very nice post. Thank you for giving me pros and cons of both. One question I have is if I decide to sow my own seed and starting from scratch, how do I combat the weeds that start growing? Is their a product or advice to keeping the weeds at bay and not harm the new grass? Thanks again

    1. Glad you enjoyed it Nathan. To be honest, and I know this might be a real pain, the best to remove them is by hand. You just want to make sure you don’t harm the new seeds, because they’re so young they’ll be very fragile and applying a weedkiller could easily damage them.

      You don’t want to hinder your chances of getting a great new lawn so just stay on the safe side;-)

  2. I enjoyed this information on lawns and the options available. I like to buy the seed so I can choose the look and fee of my lawn. I especially like bluegrass, though it is difficult to grow in my region.
    Is there a way to successfully grow it in the Northern hemisphere?

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