How To Cut Sod In 4 Practical Steps


Sod is a very important part of your home exterior. It is very important when it comes to landscaping and when used properly, it can also make your lawns look green and lively. Sod, also known as Turf, is basically made up of grass, its roots as well as soil or material that is used to keep the grass in place.

Sod is not just important when it comes to the beautifying outdoor spaces, it can actually be used to help prevent soil erosion in different areas. In fact, it can be effectively used in flood prevention and in cooling the ground. Sod is even important when it comes to improving the water and air quality.

Sod is typically sold in rolls. This is why if you want to use it properly, you will have to carefully cut it into the right shape and dimensions. This is particularly true when it comes to putting sod near pathways or in landscapes that have irregular contours and shapes. Here’s how you can do it properly:

Things You Need To Prepare

1. Measuring Tape

a measure tape

This will be used to help you get the proper dimensions and size of the area that you want to cover with sod. If you do not have a measuring tape, you might be able to use a yarn or rope but it will definitely be more difficult since you will only be able to use markings.

2. A Ruler

a ruler

This will be used to measure small areas and it will also serve as a guide that you can use when cutting the sod. If you do not have it, you can always use a wooden plank or board as well as a meter stick.

3. A Landscaping Spray


This will be used to mark the sod where you need to cut it. If you do not have this landscaping spray, you can always opt to use flour. Avoid using chemicals or salt to serve as markers since it might kill or damage the sod.

4. A Spade Shovel

spade shovel

This will be used to cut and dig out the sod. If you do not have this tool, you can use a half moon edger or a spade so you can dig into the ground at least 6 inches deep.

5. A Utility Knife

utility knife

This will be used to cut the sod more precisely and it can also be used to remove the roots if needed. If you do not have one, you can use an ordinary knife, garden scissors or a bypass pruners.

How To Cut Sod In 4 Practical Steps

Step 1: Measure

a measure tape on grass

If you want to cover an entire lawn with sod, you will have to make sure that you get the exact area so you will be able to know how many rolls of sod to order. If you are going to put sod near pathways or in corners, you will have to use the landscaping spray to mark the sod precisely where it needs cutting.

You can also use the ruler so that you can make precise measurements for very small areas. If you are finished measuring the area, I highly recommend that you double check everything so you can avoid making mistakes. When covering bald areas, you can also make a pattern so you can cut accurately.

Step 2: Dig Out The Sod

shovel under foot

If you have the sod in your property, you will have to dig it out yourself. You can use the spade shovel to dig the outline of the sod. Make sure that you are able to dig below the roots so you can pull it out of the ground cleanly by sliding the shovel underneath. Use the knife to remove roots. Roll the sod after.

Step 3: Cutting The Sod

cutting sod

If you have a big area to fill, you can roll out the sod and lay it down starting on one corner. But if you have to fill small areas, you will have to transfer the measurements you made onto the sod so you can cut it properly. Using the utility knife, follow the spray markings carefully.

To cut the sod, you can use the ruler as a guide so you will be able to cut it precisely. Let the utility knife extend so that it can go deep enough. You can pierce the sod with the knife and use a saw motion to cut a piece off cleanly or you can let the sharp tip glide three or more times in order to make the cut.

This will actually allow you to fit the piece of sod that you cut over the area like a jigsaw puzzle. It is alright if the piece does not fit perfectly, keep in mind that the pieces should be placed next to each other with a little space in between. Lay the sod as if you were placing tiles next to each other.

Step 4: Using Small Pieces

grass turfs

If you are still having wide bald areas because you were not able to cut the large piece of sod correctly or because you measured incorrectly, you can patch it up using small pieces or strips. Cut off small strips of sod and then fill the empty areas with it.


Cutting sod can be labor intensive, this is why you will need to have a lot of patience if you ever want to make sure that the pieces of sod will fit perfectly. Always try your best to measure twice and then make a clean cut once. This will allow you to keep the sod in good condition.

If you do make cutting or measuring mistakes, do not worry too much about it. Just try to fill it up with small pieces or strips of sod and let the sod do its work. Over time, the sod will grow and fill up the small imperfections so that you will be able to get a very even growth.

As soon as the sod has been placed, avoid mowing it right away. Try to let it grow and establish its roots properly. Make sure that it stays undisturbed for at least a few month so that the sod can easily thrive. Maintain the sod regularly so you can avoid having weeds in your lawn.

About the Author Emily Taylor

My name is Emily Taylor, gardening is my passion and I’m looking forward to sharing it with everyone. I know that there are millions of people out there want their backyard and garden be attractive just like their front yard, so I am here to help you create your own backyard paradise.

Leave a Comment:

1 comment
kay says Aug. 2017

I hear adding sugar helps keep grass green is that true? Also is sodding the best way to go when clearing land?

Add Your Reply

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This