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Water Blog

Successful New Lawns

All Greeley water customers must obtain a variance when planting new seed or sod to water the lawn outside of the watering restrictions. If a variance is not granted, residents must follow Greeley’s watering schedule or risk getting violations and fines. With the Water Budget, you may also face exceeding your water budget and paying significantly higher rates.  Variances must be obtained when landscaping a new home/commercial property or planting seed or sod in an established yard.

Greeley requires water customers to prepare the soil with compost rich in organic matter to acquire a lawn watering variance. Our soils in this area tend to be shallow with a layer of hard clay, sometimes just inches below the surface. Good soil preparation requires approximately 5% organic material incorporated into the native soil. Compost is a mixture that is rich in decayed organic matter and is used for conditioning soil. Compost promotes microbiological activity in soils necessary for plant healthy growth. Topsoil or amended topsoil is not an approved amendment for the variance because it doesn’t contain enough organic material and is basically just ground up rock.

Steps to a healthy and successful lawn project:

  1. Using a tape measure or wheel, measure your yard for area.  You will need this measurement to calculate the amount of compost and seed or sod needed. Add 10% to your calculated area for good measure.
  2. Purchase your seed or sod and compost and keep all your receipts.
  3. Call 811 to get utility line locates. Allow at least a week for this to be completed.
  4. Flag any existing sprinkler heads so you don’t hit them with the rototiller.
  5. Arrange for the delivery of sod and compost. If you are doing a lawn larger than 500 square feet, you will want to purchase your compost in bulk from a nursery or bulk landscape supply yard.
  6. Arrange for the purchase, rental, or borrowing of a rototiller if you do not have one. 
  7. Level the surface of the lawn area and remove rocks and large sticks.  Leaves and organics can be left to be incorporated. 
  8. Spread compost at a rate of 4 cubic yards evenly across the surface of the lawn.  It will be 1 to 2 inches deep.
  9. Rototill the lawn area to incorporate the soil and compost.
  10. Rake smooth.
  11. Plant grass. 
    Seed:  Spread seed evenly across the surface and gently rake in to cover the seed.  Some like to divide the seed in half and distribute one direction and then spread the rest while walking perpendicular to the first distribution
    Sod:  Lay sod in a brick pattern across any slopes, making sure to abut the edges of the lawn snuggly against one another without overlapping them. Use a good knife to cut around heads and to fit into your space.
  12. Water the new seed or sod. You will water more frequently for the first couple of weeks but in short cycles. See Watering New Lawns for more details on watering, then weaning your new lawn.  

Contact Us

Greeley Water and Sewer

1001 11th Ave, 2nd Floor
Greeley, CO 80631

Monday - Friday 8am - 5pm

970-350-9811 tel
970-350-9805 fax

Water Conservation

970-336-4168 for Water Budget


Water 7am-3pm 970-350-9320
Sewer 7am-3pm 970-350-9322
after hours970-616-6260

Other Numbers

billing970-350-9811 (dial 2 for billing clerk)
start or stop service970-350-9811 (dial 2 for billing clerk)
water taste or odor970-350-9836
water pressure970-350-9320
water restrictions & violations970-336-4134
utility line locates811
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