Why Is My Hydroseed Not Growing?

Hydroseed should start to germinate in a relatively short amount of time. It should take no more than one or two weeks before you start to notice the seeds sprouting. Unfortunately, sometimes things don’t work out as they should, and your grass may not be growing.

If your hydroseed is not growing, it may be due to not enough water, improper soil, too little sunlight, or damage from foot or machine traffic.

It’s a lot to take into account, and even if you think you are doing everything right you may have missed an important step in the care of your hydroseed. 

If you want to know more about how to take care of your hydroseed properly, and what you need to do to make it look as good as it can, continue reading below. 

Why Isn’t My Hydroseed Growing?

There are a few reasons why your hydroseed might not be growing. If you have recently had someone come and hydroseed your garden, and you aren’t seeing any results after approximately ten days, there are some things to look for to determine the root of the problem. 

Common issues with hydroseeded gardens are:

  • Not enough water
  • Unbalanced soil
  • Not enough fertilizer
  • Premature mowing
  • Uneven germination 
  • Not enough sunlight
  • Too much damage

Can You Overwater Hydroseed?

water sprinkler
It is possible to overwater your hydroseed, though it is pretty hard at the beginning. You want to keep all areas slightly moist during the first two weeks, but not wet. This usually means breaking the yard up into sections and watering each section at a time. 

If you live in a dry area, you may need to water twice a day, in the morning and at night, to make sure it doesn’t get too dry. In some particularly dry regions, it’s even recommended to water three to five times a day while you are waiting on your lawn to grow in the first two weeks. 

After the first two weeks, you want to allow the soil to fully dry before watering again. If you ever have puddles, that is a bad sign as it can harm your grass. 

What Should the Soil Look Like?

You want to make sure you have some topsoil, usually about 4 inches (10 cm). Preferably, you want loamy topsoil as it provides a lot of nutrients and a healthy pH level for your soil. 

You also don’t want the soil to be too thick or compact. If there’s been a lot of foot traffic over the soil, you will want to loosen it up so that way the roots can penetrate and grow. 

When Should I Fertilize Hydroseed?

After your lawn has been hydroseeded, you want to wait about 30 days before applying any fertilizer. After that, you can wait about a month to a month and a half before fertilizing again a second time. After the second time, you can fertilize it in the spring, summer, and fall, but don’t fertilize it during the winter. 

When fertilizing, you always want to do it on a dry lawn and water it afterwards thoroughly. Liquid fertilizer is best with a 16-16-16 NPK (nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium) ratio. You also want to make sure it is a slow release fertilizer. 

When Should I Begin Mowing?

Mowing too much at any time is bad, especially early on when the seeds are attempting to germinate. For the first mowing, you usually want to wait about three or four weeks. Generally, the grass blades should be at least 3 or 4 inches in height before you mow the first time. 

Mowing also helps with bald areas. By essentially stunting growth in terms of height, you are encouraging your grass to spread out instead of growing up, so don’t be alarmed if there are thinner patches the first few times you mow. 

How Do I Know If the Application Was Even?

Having a controlled flow and making sure you have a nice and consistent coverage of the hydroseed is important to make sure the application is even. This is especially true if your ground isn’t level or you are overseeding. If you approach the seeding from one angle only, you tend to miss the backs of taller patches of rocks or grass, and it leads to uneven germination. 

Take the time to cover the area fully, and avoid a lot of foot and machine traffic over areas you already sprayed thoroughly. 

What Amount of Sunlight Does Hydroseed Need?

sunlight on leaves
Hydroseed, and most grass, needs about three to four hours of sunlight a day, even if that is partial sunlight. Shade-tolerant plants, despite their name, also do better with having a few hours of sunlight or partial sunlight a day. 

Even if your plant manages to grow in shady areas, and doesn’t develop moss, it will slowly thin out over time if not exposed to enough sun. 

How Long Does It Take Hydroseed to Sprout?

Hydroseed should start sprouting relatively quickly. Most often it can take a week, but in some climates, it can take closer to two. The seeding mixture, watering levels, and your climate can all factor into how long it takes the hydroseed to start sprouting, so if you don’t see it sprouting as early as you expected, don’t worry. 

How Long After Hydroseeding Can You Walk on It?

Foot traffic and other objects on your newly hydroseeded lawn can severely hamper growth. For the best results, you want to wait up to six weeks without walking along the grass to prevent any damage. 

However, when you are watering, you may not be able to avoid walking on the hydroseed. That is fine, as long as you are careful and just make sure you don’t disturb the mulch mat. 

What Should Hydroseed Look Like After Two Weeks?

Hydroseeded lawns after two weeks may not look as beautiful as you expected. It is common to see spotty,patchy, and bare areas around the two-week mark. You may even begin to notice some weeds. 

It doesn’t matter how well you followed the guidelines, this is standard across all lawns and no cause for concern. The thickness tends to come in when you start mowing, and mowing maintenance should help you to remove patchy areas as well. 

Therefore, until you mow a few times, it isn’t worth being too worried about your grass. 

How Can I Make Hydroseed Grow Faster?

If you want your hydroseed to grow faster, starting the seeding in the summer when it is warm and bright is best. However, due to the heat, you will also have to water much more often than any other season. So if you are going to be too busy to water your lawn as much as you should, it might be worth sacrificing a few weeks of growing time to reduce on watering time. 

Making sure you are watering enough also helps to speed up your hydroseed growth. If your grass isn’t getting enough water, it may not kill it, but it will slow down growth. Make sure you are watering as much as you should, based on the advice of the company that hydroseeded your lawn or manufactured your hydroseed mixture. 

Hydroseeding Dos and Don’ts

dos and donts

  • Water your hydroseed often, even up to five times a day during the germination period
  • Make sure your soil is properly mixed and has a slightly loose texture
  • Try and keep pests away
  • Fertilize every few months as needed
  • Mow frequently once new growth has reached 3 to 4 inches 


  • Mow too early (before approximately three weeks)
  • Walk across the grass for the first month (or until blades are approximately 4 inches tall) unless watering
  • Add pesticides until after three months
  • Overwater once the grass starts to grow
  • Stop your care practices just because your lawn looks established
  • Let your lawn stay dry for more than 24 hours during the first several months

Can You Overseed Hydroseed?

Hydroseed is an excellent option for overseeding. Overseeding is when you plant another seed into preexisting turf or grass, without harming it or tearing up the soil. It is most often used to fill in any patches of grass that are thin or need to be a little denser. 


Hydroseeding is a cheap and effective way to seed a lawn so that you have consistent grass coverage across your yard. However, just because it is relatively easy and cheap doesn’t mean there aren’t things you should pay close attention to. 

If you don’t properly follow the rules for hydroseeding and take care of your lawn as it grows, you may find that your hydroseed isn’t growing or isn’t as lush as you expected. In order to ensure your hydroseed grows well, you must water it at least twice per day, use loose, loamy soil, make sure direct sunlight is available, don’t mow or fertilize for the first month, and avoid any damage from foot or machine traffic.

If you follow these hydroseed care instructions, you will have a lush, beautiful lawn in no time!