When you were little, you probably tried growing fruit from their seeds. And you may have wondered why they never took. Now, as an adult, it may surprise you that grass grows from seeds. It’s not clear why this is such a shock – how else would grass grow?
It’s crucial to buy the best grass seed. All the watering and fertilising in the world are pointless if you started with bad seed. You want to get high-quality seeds that will germinate and lower without excess fuss. So let’s look around and discover the best breeds and brands of grass.
The Best Grass Seed In UK 2021
1. Sprogs and Dogs Hardwearing Lawn Seed – 1kg
Does your residents’ association dictate the height of your grass and the frequency of your mowing? Then this may not be your best bet. But if you’re allowed a lawn that’s 4cm or higher. Sprogs and Dogs could work. As the name suggests, this is the best grass seed or ‘active’ yards. If you have children’s boots, furry paws, or football spikes in high rotation, this is a flawless selection.
The seed grows lush and full in the warmer months. This mixture of creeping red fescue and dwarf ryegrass germinates promptly and ills out within weeks. Two months after planting, you’ll have a well-established lawn. Sprogs and Dogs lawns are low-maintenance. They may go dormant beneath the snow and wither in scorching summers, but they quickly bounce back.
A kilo of this seed will cover 30m2 so the average urban yard won’t need more than one bag. But this grass mix draws in the birdies. They’ll peck at the seeds before they’ve had a chance to germinate, so lay nets over your lawn or the first few weeks to keep the birds away. This trick can also keep dogs from peeing the seeds to death before they’ve had a chance to take root.
For the rough-and-tumble yard, Sprogs and Dogs grass seed is ideal. It’s suitable for dog parks, football pitches, and nursery school playgrounds. Plant in autumn or spring for best results.
- It works well with kids and pets.
- The grass grows quickly in warm weather.
- You can mow up to 4cm.
- It attracts a LOT of birds.
2. The Grass People Superstar Seed – 10kg
Most of us can’t identify grass species on sight. So we rely on internet searches and packet instructions. That’s why this grass is so ideal for amateurs. You can plant it almost all year round (February to October) and it’s tailored or UK soil and weather. Ideally, the soil needs to be sunny, damp and range from 8 to 10°C. So don’t plant too close to winter – it won’t germinate.
This grass seed is 80% ryegrass and 20% creeping red fescue. It’s not intended for close mowing – it looks best when it’s 2.5cm to 4cm tall. This 10kg bag will last forever since you only need about 50g for every square metre. It produces a hardy lawn that can survive the rowdiest kids and friskiest pets. This ‘dosage’ is or starting fresh lawns and will provide lush coverage.
But if you’re reseeding a lawn after winter, summer, fire damage, or long-term neglect (for example), you’ll only need 35g per square metre. The seed needs to be about 6cm beneath the soil. So either dig that far down or cover with 2 inches of topsoil. Spreaders are best for even distribution. Avoid plying seed on the pavement or flowerbed – ryegrass can sprout anywhere!
This mix of superstar grass was curated with British lawns in mind. It grows luxurious lawns that can withstand high traffic and tough treatment. Plant when the soil is warm and moist.
- The seed is customised or UK conditions.
- A kilo can populate a 20m2
- This brand approved by STRI, DEFRA, and BSPB.
- You’ll need a net – this grass seed is like candy for wild birds.
3. GroundMaster Hardwearing Grass Seed – 10kg
Having a busy yard can be a blessing. Kid and pets brighten your life and warm up your space. But they can be murder on your grass. So if you’d like to keep enjoying that petrichor, invest in a bag of GroundMaster. This 10kg bag can reseed a garden up to 300m2. The grass seed is a mix of 70% ryegrass and 30% red fescue. The ryegrass is also a mix – 50% twin Lolium and 20% Troya.
You can plant this grass anytime except during winter, so get the seeds in before Halloween. They need warm, damp soil to thrive. And in the right conditions, they will germinate in less than a week. The average rooting time or GroundMaster is between 5 and 10 days. You need about 35g or every square metre of reseeded lawn. This hardy grass will revive after the holidays.
The beauty of this grass seed is its speedy restoration. Even if the kids and dogs destroyed the lawn over the summer, it will repair within two weeks and continue to thrive through the harshest activities. And all that autumn leaf fall will provide much-needed mulch and manure. But be careful if your leaf blower is particularly powerful – you may huff and puff all the seeds away.
GroundMaster is beloved for its comprehensive cover and fast growth. When the weather is ripe for planting, you can restore bare patches in under a week. Wait two weeks for full germination.
- It’s a mix of ryegrass and fescue.
- The seed germinates in 5 to 10 days.
- It can survive busy garden conditions.
- It won’t germinate if you plant past October.
4. GBW Grass Seed – 1kg (Our Top Pick)
We are a small island that once dominated the world. And we still play a huge global role. But the size and location of our homeland means we have miserable weather for much of the year. On the upside, GBW grass seed is cultured specifically or this uninspiring climate. So the grass will do well for most of the year. The bad news? It must beat the clouds to germinate in the first place.
And this can be a problem because GBW needs full sunlight to sprout. And we rarely get that much sun. This mixed bag aims to make the best of the situation though. The grass seed combines 5% bentgrass (brown top), 12% fescue (chewings), 40% (creeping) fescue, and 43% ryegrass (dwarf amenity). So your lawn will seamlessly blend hardy grass and softer downing.
The dwarf amenity ryegrass is a mix of 10% bokser and 33% transate. The seed is packed in 5kg canvas bags to retain its viability. For fresh lawns, use kg or 55 square metres. Repair work will make do with a kilo per 35 square metres. This seed is optimised to survive drought, heat, disease, and weeds. It develops deep roots in short periods so it can withstand the worst.
GBW is bred bespoke for UK weather and British soil quality. Plant it any time of year (except winter) and watch it thrive. It’s intended as long grass so don’t expect to mow below 10cm.
- The seed is tweaked or local weather.
- It’s certified by DEFRA.
- It carries a 00% guarantee.
- The seed needs maximal sunlight to germinate so it may struggle in this gloomy weather.
5. AM Pro-24 Premiership Grass Seed – 5kg
Generally speaking, ryegrass is tough and bunchy while fescue is fine and ornamental. So using 50% of both should give you the best of both, no? It keeps your garden healthy and lush while surviving energetic kids and playful pets. The grass is half esquire dwarf amenity ryegrass and half creeping red fescue. The grass germinates in 7 to 21 days, restoring your lawn in a month.
This 5kg back can seed an area of about 142m2. Fresh lawns need 35g/m2 but for repairs, restoration, or bald patches, you’re okay with 20g/m2. And if you’re worried about tariffs and levies, don’t be – grass feed is zero-rated within the UK. Usually, ryegrass grows in hard, bushy bunches. But the strong creeping fescue in the back keeps your grassy patches fine and feathery.
Or best results, use pre-seed fertiliser to prime the ground. You can dig up the ground a few days or weeks before to open up the soil. If you have the time (and I the resident’s association will let you), plough lightly with a hoe, aerator, tine corer, or scarifier. Let the soil sit for up to a week to maximise the circulation of air, water, organic matter, and fertiliser. Seed the following week.
AM Pro-24 is a grass seed mix from A1-Lawn. The seed will germinate within a week or three, giving you a vibrant mix of fine and hardwearing grass that’s greener than your neighbours’.
- It’s a half-and-half mix of fescue and ryegrass.
- The grass seed is certified by FERA/SASA.
- It resists disease quite effectively.
- It won’t do well or pasture or horse paddocks – this is or domestic lawns.
6. Miracle-Gro Ever Green Multipurpose Lawn Seed – 1.6kg
You can usually spot American product by the bright colours on their packages and the simplistic puns in their names. And because the ‘grass people’ know how snobbish us Brits can sometimes be, they partnered with a local agricultural manufacturer –Ever Green Garden Care. (No, these are not the people with the boat – those were from Taiwan with owners in Japan).
The point being Miracle-Gro is both foreign and local so you know who to call in case of issues. You shouldn’t have any problems though. This quick-growing seed germinates within 5 days. But only in the right planting conditions, ideally after spring break but before Halloween. Which are both distinctly American time markers … so let’s just say late March to early October.
The grass seed is a mix of ryegrass and fescue, though they don’t specify the varieties and proportions. The seed is treated using the company’s WaterSmart formula, allowing the germinating grass to absorb maximal water. This makes germination up to 50% faster than rival brands. Shake the box to fully mix the grass species then pour seed out of the side sprinkler.
Miracle-Gro offers quick germination and hardy cultivation. The box has a ‘sprinkler’ on the side that you can use to spread and sow your grass seeds. It also has detailed seeding instructions.
- It grows best if planted between March and October.
- The grass can germinate in less than a week.
- This seed is suitable for homes with kids and pets.
- Its minimum height is 3cm so if your neighbourhood (or your personal preferences) lean toward buzz cuts, this isn’t the best grass seed for your needs.
7. Speedy Seed Original Grass Seed – 1.4kg
Do you have an event coming up and need to restore your garden in a rush? Try the aptly named Speedy Seed. It will give you a lush leafy lawn in less than a week. And it’s easy to use – just rake, shake, and water. You do need to scarify or manually plough before you plant. You’ll want to turn up the soil at least 10cm deep and remove any weeds or stones before sprinkling seed.
The pack contains a 50-50 mix of Nui ryegrass and estanzuela ryegrass. Before sowing, crumble the soil to a breadcrumb texture. Use the hole on the side of the box as a sprinkler to spread the grass seed. Rake the soil back over the seeds and water them. You can also use fertiliser – either pre-seed or post-seed but avoid using weed-and-feed products. The ‘weed’ part can burn seeds.
Ideally, water the lawn regularly until the seeds germinate. You want to keep the soil damp so if it hasn’t rained that day, a light misting will do. But wait a few weeks before fertilising the lawn. If you’re starting a new lawn, spread the pack over 30m2. For repair work, it can cover an area twice that size. Wait until the grass grows 8cm tall before trimming it or the first time.
Speedy Seed is a great emergency tool. It has a 3-year shelf life so you should always have a kilo in storage or quick lawn repair. Check the dates to be sure your pack is still viable or germination.
- The seed stays fresh in its pack for 2 to 3 years.
- This pack can cover 4 to 84 square metres.
- The grass that grows is highly resistant to weeds.
- It’s exclusive to Amazon so you may have a hard time sourcing it if Amazon doesn’t deliver where you live …
8. The Grass People Super Steadfast Ultrashade – 10kg
They say the grass is always greener on the other side. But maybe their water bill is higher. Or their garden lights are brighter. Still, if the grass in your yard is shaded, this may contribute to its … paleness. Gardens with overhangs, large trees, and less direct sunlight are unlikely to be as vibrant. Plus with our generally cloudy skies, our grass gets less solar radiation overall.
Enter Steadfast Ultrashade. It’s designed for UK soil and climate, with emphasis on low-lit areas. This grass will germinate even without exposure to strong sunlight. But of course, it grows much more slowly because grass needs sunlight to photosynthesise and feed itself. The seed blends 50% chewings fescue, 40% meadow grass (smooth stalked), and 10% shade-loving poa supina.
This grass seed is great for forested areas where the natural canopy blocks out the sun. It can also be helpful for the tiny yards and balconies in high-rise flats. The tall buildings and urban architecture keep these spaces dim and sometimes depressing. So some shadow-loving grass can introduce a touch of greenery and zen back to your modern office or living space.
Steadfast Ultrashade grass seed is curated to grow without direct exposure to the sun. The best time to plant is February to October. But remember, less sun means slower growth so be patient.
- The seeds thrive even in shaded areas and cloudy days.
- The mix is formulated specifically for UK weather.
- It’s approved and certified by DEFRA and STRI.
- It’s a slow-growing variety … though at least you’ll mow less often.
9. AM Pro-9 Shady Grass Seed
The trick to shady grass is the seed blend. It needs a sufficient proportion of low-sunlight varieties. A1-Lawn does this well with its six-seed blend. The ratio is 2% meadow grass (wood), 3% bentgrass (browntop), 10% more meadow grass (this time it’s the smooth stalked kind), 5% fescue (hard/sheep), 50% creeping red fescue (15% slender and 35% strong), and 20% ryegrass.
The ryegrass is the dwarf variety, with its fine leaves and hardy health. This grass takes 7 to 21 days to germinate though growth is likely to slow down after that. It’s designed to do well in the shade but it can also grow in sunny areas. You’ll notice you’re mowing the sunny grass more often than the shady section. You should also consider soil type – AM Pro-9 needs good drainage to thrive.
Keep in mind this is a slow-growing kind of grass. A1-Lawn has tonnes of seed options so check the codes carefully to be sure of what you’re buying. You might select quicker-growing trees or your main sunny areas. But or your edges, sections under trees and hedges, or even the grass under the carport, AM Pro-9 works well. You can only trim it to 2.5cm though. No buzz cuts.
Ryegrass is one o the toughest varieties available. It’s great for kids and pets. So if you want a rye-rich shaded grass seed, try AM Pro-9. But practice patience – it germinates fast but grows slow.
- The seed germinates and grows without sunshine.
- Like all A1-Lawn products, this one is certified by FERA/SASA.
- It has a complex blend of 7 grass varieties.
- It can thrive in both shaded and sunny areas but will struggle in swampy clay soils with poor drainage.
10. Moowy Quick Repair Grass Seed
We get rain almost every day so we may not know this. But in parts of the world where rain is seasonal (rather than habitual), watching grass grow isn’t as boring as you’d think. You fall asleep to the rhythm of the rain and the soothing scent of petrichor. And you wake up to cute green sprouts dotted with glimmering raindrops. It’s like rainfall makes grass grow overnight.
But in a land like ours with regular rain, you soon realise it takes more than wet weather. You need solid seed. Otherwise, that quick-growing grass will wither in a week. Quick Repair addresses this scenario. When you want grass in a rush, they’re the guys to call. Their seeds are 100% ryegrass and they share suppliers with 2018 World Cup football pitches. #BraggingRights.
The recommended dosage or Quick Repair is 17g/m2 for repair work and twice as much to start a new lawn. If you plant the seeds right (soil at 10°C or higher with the thatch removed earlier), your seeds will sprout in less than a week. Be sure to rake soil over the seeds. And if it hasn’t been raining, mist the soil 3 or 4 times a day to keep it moist. Wait up to 10 days or completion.
These ryegrass repair seeds come in resealable pouches so they stay fresher or longer. The first few seeds will germinate within 5 days. You should achieve fully germinated cover by Day 10.
- You’re getting World Cup grass!
- It’s especially effective against fire damage or destruction by dog urine.
- It’s easy to use with clear instructions on the pack.
- Ryegrass is hardwearing so it does well in high traffic areas. But it’s not as pretty as a lawn dotted with fescue.
To the untrained eye, grass is grass. It’s green, smells great in the rain, and can cut you worse than paper when it’s wet. And grass pretty much grows on its own. Especially in rainy lands like ours. But if you want award-winning laws (or have a finicky residents’ association), you need to be more discerning in your grass seed selection. Let’s check out some factors to consider.
Type of Grass
If you think about it, you’ve always known there are different grass varieties. You may not have given it conscious thought, but I pressed, you can describe various grasses. Some have skinny stalks with feathery tops. Some have fine, delicate blades that almost call you to graze. Almost. Some have broad, rounded leaves while some seem permanently yellow. Stroll around the lawn.
The garden will have pockets of mixed species. If you like a particular type, confirm its name and buy more of that. (Google image searches might help.) Most grass seed bags contain a mix of fescue, ryegrass, and bentgrass. Fescue is fine and soft but it won’t germinate in winter. It needs warm soil. Bentgrass is velvety but high maintenance. Ryegrass is hardy, rough, and rugged.
As we’ve mentioned, fescue is best planted in warmer months while ryegrass grows anywhere, anytime. But ryegrass is harder to tame. But your lawn conditions aren’t strictly driven by the season. Soil type matters, so get a soil sample to see your nutrient ratio and soil type. Most UK soil is clay with some sandy patches closer to the coast. Fescue does well in clay-heavy lawns.
Also, is your lawn sunny or shaded? Ryegrass and fescue can survive in sunny areas and shady ones too. Bentgrass is likely to wither if it can’t bask to its blades’ content. Think about the cutting height as well. In fussy neighbourhoods, the rules go down to the centimetre. Ryegrass is rough and works best at taller settings around 4cm. Fescue and bentgrass can go as low as 1cm.
For those of us with kids or pets, we can’t be too particular. Dogs, cats, bunnies, and even tortoises will poo all over the yard. So you may want bunchy ryegrass to hide the mess and enjoy the free manure. And while kids will constantly trample the grass with their games, you may want a softer downer to reduce their scrapes and grass burns. Ryegrass will survive better though.
Not all gardens are that rough and tumble though. If your sensibilities are more ‘keep off the grass or else!’ … you should probably opt for ornamental bentgrass. Their lush, delicate blades are a better fit for stripes and decorative patterns. But remember, this bougie grass can’t hold its own against weeds so it’s a hands-on kind of grass. You’ll be doing a lot more lawn work.
Grow That Greener Grass
To be the envy of your neighbourhood – pun intended – buy GBW. Here’s why:
- It mixes two ryegrasses, two fescues, and one bentgrass.
- This diversity helps it withstand mixed garden conditions.
- The grass can resist extreme temperatures, weeds, and disease.
- It also survives trampling by kids and dogs (but train the dog to pee elsewhere!).
- The grass enjoys our excessive rainfall levels but it can live through drought as well.
- It germinates in 2 to 4 weeks and has a 100% refund guarantee.
Which grass seed did you last plant? Show us your lawn (or your seed pack) in the comments!