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WHAT IS HYDROSEEDING?          Hydroseeding is much more than just slopping some seed and mulch on the ground and hoping it will grow! It is a scientific planting process, which originates back to the 1940s. Sometimes called (Hydraulic Mulch Seeding, Hydro-Mulching, Hydraseeding).

  • Hydroseeding is a practical and cost effective solution which uses a water based slurry of seed, mulch, and additives from a tank, mounted either on a truck or trailer as an alternative technique to the traditional process of broadcasting or dry seeding for establishing lawns, ground covers and/or vegetation. In addition, it can be highly effective for erosion control on hillsides and sloped areas.

  • Almost any place where the ground has been disturbed you will find hydroseeding being used for restoring residential lawns to large-scale construction projects, and virtually anything in between.

HOW MUCH DOES HYDROSEEDING COST?          Regrettably, there is “NO” set square foot or square meter price for hydroseeding with the exception or road work because, of each job’s variables. Every job’s cost will be decided by the job’s variables, Location, Size, Application Conditions, Mulch, Seed Mixture, etc. Hydroseeding will typically cost less than sod or terraseeding but more than slit or broadcast seeding.

HYDROSEEDING FUNDAMENTIALS          The fundamentals of hydroseeding are the same as all other types of seeding. Regardless the type of seeding you choose the critical fundamentals for successful hydroseeding are:

SOIL TESTING:         Soil type, and quality have the greatest influence on any seed’s germination, establishment, and sustainability potential. A soil test will give you the Physical, Chemical, and Biological (Organic Matter) information about your soil.

  • Most importantly it gives recommendations as to any adjustments that should be made to assure a more favorable growing environment, "ESPECIALLY IF YOU HAVE SANDY SOILS".

GROUND PREPARATION:           Not “PROPERLY PREPARING” the ground (seedbed) correctly prior to hydroseeding is one of the most common and major mistakes, which affects the overall result. Most seeds require a fine textured, loose soil surface for the small roots of the seed embryo to penetrate and take hold and for the mulch to hold the soil in place. The extent of the ground(seedbed) preparation needed depends upon your soil test results and the type of application. You can have the finest seed and best fertilizer, but poor soil preparation can lead to inadequate results.



  • FOR OVERSEEDING APPLICATIONS:      Cut down all existing vegetation as short as possible, removal of all rocks, debris and loosening of the compacted soil. For the seed’s embryo to germinate, have the small roots take hold and grow deep the seed must be in direct contact with the loosened soil.

  • FOR NEW APPLICATIONS:         Requires 2-4 inches of a bare loose quality soil surface, removal of all rocks and debris. For the seed’s embryo to germinate, have the small roots take hold and grow deep the seed must be in direct contact with the loosened soil. Not having 2-4 inches of a bare loose quality soil surface can lead to wash out and poor germination.


SEED SELECTION:   Virtually any plant that can be grown from seed can be hydroseeded. Therefore, select a seed and/or seed mixture that is suited to your soil’s conditions, has the texture and color you want, can withstand the intended usage, and grows well in your area to create the lawn, ground cover or vegetation you want to establish.


  • We said mixture because they consist of both perennial and annual seeds. Annual seeds (Cover Crop) germinate quickly to protect the slower germinating perennial seeds. Mixtures are available for sun, shade, endurance, sandy or clay soils, dry and/or wet conditions. SO, CHOOSE WHAT IS RIGHT FOR YOU THE SOIL AND INTENDED USAGE.

  • The Canadian Government regulations require a minimum of 70% germination rate. To ensure germination standards, seeds available in Canada have been developed through breeding processes for sustainability, hardiness, and habits.

  • All seed application rates should be those of the manufacture’s specifications. To much or too little seed will influence the germination, which can lead to inadequate results.

  • It is common to have areas that are slow to germinate. This is due to the differences in PH levels and compaction in soil. Many of these areas will fill in once mowing begins. Lack of water or over watering may also attribute to slower germination. Generally, with proper post application maintenance germination results are experienced within one to two weeks, with mowing beginning around 3-4 weeks from the date of application.


SEED PROTECTION and MOISTURE RETENTION (MULCH):     Hydroseeding mulch the “GREEN STUFF” is the most critical element because, once cured it stabilizes the soil, keeps the seed in place, holds moisture, and maintains temperature during the critical germination period. It’s essential that the soil surface remains stable and keeps the seed in “DIRECT CONTACT” with the soil. Therefore, protecting the seed from the elements (Wind, Heavy Rains, Excessive Heat) is critical for germination and for the small roots of the seed embryo to take hold. The main types of mulch are:

  • Cellulose – Made from recycled newspaper is the least expensive and is vulnerable to erosion unless mixed with tackifier and other erosion control additives.

  • Wood/Paper Blend – Provides good moisture retention, and soil bonding for erosion control.

  • BFM/FRM – High performance erosion control products for better moisture retention, and soil bonding.

  • HGM – Are specifically designed to aid in building an effective plant growth medium over poor topsoil and/or subsoils but are vulnerable to erosion without additional erosion control measures.

  • The type and amount of mulch used for your hydroseeding depends entirely upon the type of hydroseeding job being done and the slope or grade of the area being seeded

NUTRIENTS (FERTILIZER):           Newly seeded areas must have a prompt source of nutrients immediately following germination. Based on your soil test results the fertilizer and additives within the hydroseeding slurry is the most effective way for seed to have a prompt source of nutrients needed to ensure strong and healthy growth. The three main components of any fertilizer are Nitrogen, Potassium, and Potash. These elements are listed on the bag, which specifies the percentages.

  1. First number is “Up,” which is for nitrogen which makes the grass green and healthy looking.

  2. Second number is “Down,” Potassium is for a healthy root system

  3. Third number is “All Around” for the overall plant health such as disease resistance.



TIMING (WHEN TO HYDROSEED):        When to hydroseed depends on your climate. The ideal time for hydroseeding is when it is cool but not cold, and you are expecting a reasonable amount of rainfall. The rain will help defray the costs of supplemental watering. Spring and Fall seasons are widely accepted as the best time to hydroseed. However, hydroseeding can be done at anytime, provided that the ground is not frozen, snow covered or to soft for equipment.

The conventional planting season in Southern Ontario for most grasses is during those seasonal periods when daytime air temperatures range between 15 - 24 degrees Celsius (59 - 75 degrees Fahrenheit), and ground temperatures are at least 15 degrees Celsius (59 degrees Fahrenheit) and regular rainfall is expected, e.g., May, June, and September. Most grasses, ground covers, and vegetation seeds have built in self defence mechanisms, which inhibits germination when temperatures are outside this range and will remain dormant until temperatures are within this range. Seed germination varies between grass species and a newly hydroseeded lawn may require up to six weeks or more before they are able to withstand normal lawn traffic, lite play, and minimal pet usage. Weather also influences germination speeds.


  • SPRING SEEDING:     Takes advantage of spring rains and cooler temperatures making for particularly good growing conditions. The disadvantage is that if spring is followed by a dry hot summer, it may take more watering for the first year to keep it alive and thriving in the summer.

  • EARLY FALL SEEDING:     Takes advantage of the warm daytime and cool night temperatures for good growing conditions. This gives the seed time to set up before winter sets in. The seed will go dormant in the winter and then have the rain and cooler temperatures of spring to give it a good start before a hot summer.

  • SUMMER SEEDING:     Unless you have an abundant and cheap source of water its best not to hydroseed in the summer. There is not much point in fighting off hot temperatures if it is possible to avoid it.


POST SEEDING CARE AND MAINTENANCE:     A post-seeding maintenance program is essential, and you must stick to it. The program (12 Month) should consist of proper watering, mowing, fertilizer and weed control. Weeds are in the soil and germinate faster than most grasses; however, over time with proper maintenance most weeds will be eventually choked out and controllable as competition from the maturing plants increases. To ensure satisfaction and pleasing results. Do not apply any type of weed control product for at least 8 (Eight) to 12 (Twelve) weeks after seeding. The product will have adverse affects on the new seedlings.  "IF NOT FOLLOWED, EVERYTHING DONE WAS A WASTE OF TIME AND MONEY"


COMMON SENSE:     Very rarely does anyone buy a product that does not materialize for several weeks. Most everyone understands that MOTHER NATURE has her own timetable for seeding conditions and growing. It only becomes a reality when everything is in tune with nature. Therefore, by using common sense and practicing MOTHER NATURE’S principles hydroseeding can meet the growing demands of today’s multi-seasonal seeding requirements.

HOW TO GET WHAT YOU EXPECT:       Very rarely does anyone buy a product that does not materialize for several weeks.

Seek out a professional who has knowledge and experience

  • Invest in beneficial soil testing

  • Partake is soil preparation

  • Embark in sound post maintenance and cultural practices

  • Have a signed agreement, and



SUMMARY:     A lot of information has been presented with this overview of hydroseeding and there is much more content available than we can include. We encourage everyone to look at the sources listed below if you want more information:

  1. Hydroseeding - Wikipedia

  2. Eastern Canada (

  3. Profile Corporate | Solutions for your Environment (

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