The cost of a pallet of sod varies depending on the type or species of grass and the pallet size.
A typical pallet of sod costs from $150 to $450. This works out to be $0.35 to $0.85 per square foot.
A typical pallet of sod that will help you cover around 400 to 500 square feet.
Different types different prices. If the species you want is common in your local area then you will have to pay the usual price, but if it is not a common type you will have additional transport fees and the overall cost will increase. The transportation fees are not the only problem. Always keep in mind to choose a grass type that will work well with your local climate for the best results.
|Type||Low cost||High cost|
|St. Augustine Grass||$160||$340|
|Uniform green color||Intolerant to heat and drought|
|Works well in cool climates||High maintenance requirements|
|Shade tolerant||Responds ineffectively to disease, pests, and weed growth|
|Can withstand heavy foot traffic|
|Great winter hardiness|
The Kentucky bluegrass sod sells at an average price of $170 per pallet or $0.33 per square foot. This is a cool season grass and is distinguished by its lush and green appearance. Even though it prefers full sun, with proper care and regular mowing, feeding, and watering it can grow well in the shade.
|Tolerant to heavy rain||Need more water to avoid turning brown as temperatures rise|
|Stays where planted|
|Thrives despite foot traffic and frequent moving|
|Grows well in shade|
The average cost of Perennial Ryegrass sod is $230 per pallet or $0.50 per square foot. This is a durable type of grass and works well in cool weather and has tolerance to frequent mowing. Ryegrass requires low maintenance in mild climates, but you will need to fertilize it and water frequently in warmer months.
|A “good friend” to wildflowers||Most variants do not tolerate heavy foot traffic|
|Tolerate poor soil conditions||Dormant above 32 Celsius|
|Can grow at high elevations|
Fescue sod is sold at an average price of $230 per pallet or $0.50 per square foot. This is a cool-climate grass and it is the most common grass for lawns in the USA. Fescue’s popularity is due to the fact that it works well in the areas where St. Augustine, Zoysia, and Bermuda grass do not.
|Good in drought-prone areas||Highly invasive|
|Tolerates heavy foot traffic||Deep root system makes it difficult to remove|
|Recovers and repairs itself quickly||Increases allergy symptoms|
|Resists herbicides for easy weed control|
For Bermuda sod expect to pay an average price of $275 per pallet or $0.60 per square foot. Bermuda grass grows pretty quickly in almost any soil and has an ultra-deep root system, making it very drought-resistant. Due to its resistance to heavy foot traffic, it is prevalent in areas such as football fields.
St. Augustine Grass
|Adapts well to heat, drought, and saltwater||Needs extra watering during heat months|
|Good in shaded areas||Do not tolerate low temperatures|
|Overpowers weeds||Sensitive to herbicides|
|Resists pests when healthy||Cannot withstand heavy foot traffic|
This is fast-growing, wide-bladed grass and it is very popular in Central California, Carolina, and Texas. St. Augustine sod is sold at the average price of $250 per pallet or $0.55 per square foot. A very popular variant of St. Augustine is called Floratem and can be bought at the average price of $205 or $0.35 per square foot. Floratem variant works well in full sunlight and a variety of soil types.
|Requires minimal mowing||Turns brown in cold weather|
|Resistant to insects||Excessive thatching|
|Invasive grass so protect other plants|
The Zoysia sod has an average price of $225 per pallet or $0.50 per square foot. This is a soft grass with fine blades and it is perfect for golf courses because it works best in warm, sunny, open areas where it will be green for more than 6 months.
Two popular variants of the Zoysia grass are:
- Zoysia emerald with the price of $240 per pallet, and
- Zoysia zenith with the price of $385 per pallet.
|Tolerant to heat and drought||When taller than 2-inches develops thatch|
|Shade tolerant||Does not withstand heavy foot traffic, especially in winter|
|Weed and pest resistant|
This is a popular warm-season grass that creates a low, dense lawn that grows best in sandy, acidic soil types. When purchased from a hardware store the price of the Centipede grass sod has an average price of $365 per pallet or $0.80 per square foot. However, you can buy cheaper Centipede grass at a local sod farm.
|Drought tolerant||Forms large uneven seedheads|
|Low maintenance requirements||Not as dense or dark green as other types|
|Thrives in all soil types|
|Can withstand pets playing and heavy foot traffic|
|Grows good both in sunny and shade areas|
Bahia Grass sod has an average price of $135 per pallet or $0.3 per square foot. Compared to most grass varieties this is more budget-friendly. If you are new to lawn care this is an ideal option for you because it can tolerate frequent mowing and under-watering.
|Lush color and soft blades||Require frequent mowing|
|Resists disease, weeds, and pests||Needs to be watered frequently for green and lush appearance|
|Very durable compared to other cool-season types|
|Grows and recover quickly|
The average price of Marathon sod is $285 per pallet or $0.63 per square foot. This is the most usual price that most homeowners pay for this type so be careful if you find a significantly cheaper variant be sure that it is a low-quality imitation. The basic Marathon variant of this grass type thrives well in fall and cool weather, but there are available variants for different climates areas.
|Resits pests, disease, and weeds in cool temperatures||Susceptible to pests, disease, and weeds in high temperatures|
|Tolerates heavy foot traffic and low mowing||Requires frequent watering year-around|
|Prefers full sun but can grow in shade|
The average price of Bent grass sod is $270 per pallet and $0.60 per square foot. This cool-season grass has a blue-green hue and soft feel. It’s popular for lawns and sports turf since it stands up well to low mowing and heavy foot traffic. It grows very well in cool, and wet conditions.
Location and climate zone
Your preference for what type of grass to plant in your yard is often dictated by your location and your location’s climate. Limited selection means that local growers typically offer the best prices.
There are three different categories of sod for different climate zones in the State:
- Cool-season grasses – Kentucky Bluegrass, Perennial Ryegrass, and Fescue are the most famous representatives of this category;
- Transition-zone grasses – Grasses that work well in the top portion of the lower half of the country;
- Warm-season grasses – St. Augustine, Bermuda, and Zoysia grass are the most famous representatives of this category.
For the delivery of your order to your home, expect to pay between $90 and $350 depending on the amount of the order, and the distance. If you choose to pick up the order on your own you will have to rent a flatbed truck which usually costs about $20 per hour or around $130 per day, unless you don’t have your own vehicle suitable for transport.
How to measure for sod
There are two ways to calculate how much sod you’ll need. You can use a sod calculator online or do the calculations by hand. For the latter, follow these three quick steps:
- Divide the part of your lawn that’s to be sodded into triangles, squares, or circles to help you calculate the total size.
- Add up the areas of each shape, then convert the total area into the square footage.
- Lastly, divide the total area of your lawn by 2.75 (which is the size of one sod in square feet). So, for a 1,000-square-foot lawn, you’ll need around 365 pieces of sod.
If you want to measure the number of sod pallets, you’ll need, simply divide the total area of your lawn by the size of a pallet.
For instance, your 1000 sq. ft lawn will need two sod pallets, each covering around 500 sq. ft. This pallet usually has about 181 pieces of sod.
Tip: When calculating how much sod you’ll need, always add about 5 -10% more since some sod may be destroyed during cutting and shaping for the landscape.
How much does it cost to sod a lawn on average?
The national average for sod installation on a 1000 square-foot lawn is between $1,000 – $2,000 or between $1 -$2 per square foot.
This cost is inclusive of the materials and labor costs. However, it doesn’t cover other factors such as permit costs, the cost to remove old sod, prep works, and delivery costs (if any).
Most contractors will charge you around $50 per hour for the job, but their prices may shoot up depending on the complexity of the job and the topography of your lawn.
If you’re on a tight budget, you can choose to purchase the materials first, then only incur labor costs from the contractors. The materials may cost you between $0.24 – $0.64 per square foot.
For DIY projects, sodding your lawn will cost you around $1 per square foot.
Cost to resod the lawn
Most lawn owners in the United States spend between $500 – $4,500 or $0.50 – $2.50 per square foot to resod their lawn. These costs are significantly high because resodding involves a lot of work which increases a contractor’s labor hours.
Tasks such as removing the existing sod may cost you an extra $1 to $2 per square foot, while leveling and grading the lawn may go as high as $3 per square foot.
You’ll also have to spend up to $400 for fertilizer treatments for your lawn.
Tips for buying and installing the sod
- Research the different types of sods to find out which sod is right for your lawn. Look for sods that can handle traffic, work in shady areas, or even manage pets.
- Make sure your lawn is installed on the same day it’s delivered for the best results. This means having the lawn prepared beforehand. As a rule, don’t let it sit out for more than two days. If you can’t install it that day, ensure that the sod stays in a warm moist place at all times.
- You can save up more money with the sod installation by picking it up yourself instead of paying for delivery.
- DIY the sod installation if you have the time, energy, and knowledge to complete the job. This will save you hundreds of dollars in labor costs.
- Ask for a guarantee that the sod is healthy, uniform in size and height, and cut in the field. All these should be documented.
Need professional help?
The secret to a successful sod installing project is hiring the right pros for the job. Before starting out any process, consult an expert to assess your lawn and help you determine the best sod types for the yard.
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Yes! Home depot allows free sod delivery for orders above $45 when you shop with them. They promise a 2-day delivery in most states except Alaska and Hawaii. You also have the option to pick up your sod at their stores or a curbside pickup station.
Generally, you can plant your sod any time of the year, but some seasons offer more benefits than others.
Early to mid-fall is usually the most preferred time of the year to grow your sod. During this time, there’s enough precipitation and cool temperatures to allow the sod to grow.
Spring is the next best time, especially for the warm-season grasses like Zoysia and Bermuda grass.
Recommended time frame is at least 14 days. This is usually the estimated time for most grass sods to take root. Once your two weeks are over, the first test is whether your sod has taken root by trying to lift a part of the sod to see if there’s some resistance.
If you find some hardship lifting that sod, your roots have developed.
For some grass, however, root development may take up to a month, so don’t rush to walk on the sod.
Once you’re confident your sod has taken root, you should then mow at least three times before you begin regular walking on your sod.
Before laying sod on your lawn, you’ll first have to prepare the soil by:
- First clearing the lawn of any debris and objects larger than three inches. This could be stones, pebbles, etc.
- Kill all the weeds and other vegetation growing on the lawn parts you want to sod.
Next is grading the land to ensure you don’t have drainage problems later on.
- Then tilt the soil to at least 2 inches, and add more topsoil to at least 4 inches.
Test the soil’s PH, to identify which nutrients are lacking in your yard. The ideal PH should be around 6.5 or 7.
- Now add a starter fertilizer and other soil amendment products to introduce adequate nutrients to the soil for the sod to grow quickly and healthily.
A piece of sod weighs between 15 to 30 pounds, while a pallet of sod weighs around 1500 to 3000 pounds. This weight usually varies and can be about 50% more, depending on the moisture content of the soil.
Yes, but it’s not critical. Adding topsoil can help improve the soil’s water and nutrient retention capacity, ensuring that you don’t waste a lot of time watering the lawn. Topsoil also reduces the need for using fertilizers on the soil.
If you decide to go with the topsoil, a good habit is ensuring it’s mixed well with your existing soil. Otherwise, spreading it as a layer on your yard surface will prevent deep rooting for the sod.