Rolling New Sod
Rolling the sod is a very important step toward ending up with that “picture perfect” lawn. Rolling the sod ensures the best soil to sod contact so that drying out of the sod roots from air pockets that may exist under the sod are eliminated. If these air pockets are not removed, small to moderate areas of the sod may die from having the roots exposed.
Rolling the sod also levels any small divots, foot prints, or other imperfections that can cause the mowing process to scalp areas of the turf. Scalping areas, when mowing, will also ruin the uniformity appearance of the lawn and may also cause death of that area allowing weeds to get established or at the very least cause unnecessary stress to be placed upon that area of turf.
Most lawn rollers are meant to be filled with water. Start by filling the roller approximately half full. Roll an area of the turf, fold back the sod pad and visually inspect to see if all the deformities in the soil are removed. If all the deformities are not removed, add more water and repeat the above procedure until all are removed.
Once the roller is the correct weight, roll the turf in one direction using caution not to move the sod when turning or changing directions. Once all the turf is rolled in one direction, turn and roll the sod in a perpendicular direction or at least a diagonal direction to the first rolling.
Once this is complete, you may begin watering the new sod.
Rolling may be necessary again in the spring if your soils are prone to freezing and heaving from frost in the soil. This rolling should be done when enough moisture exists to smooth the soil but not so much moisture as to leave ridges from the edges of the roller.