Knowing how much sod will fill your yard is crucial to quickly getting a beautiful lawn. Despite sod’s higher cost, the immediate and beautiful results are a popular reason for choosing sod instead of growing your lawn from seed. But how big is a piece of sod, how heavy is it, and how much should you order?
I’ll explain everything you need to know in this article. Let’s get straight to the answer.
So, How Big is a Piece of Sod?
The standard size of a piece of sod is 16-inches wide by 24-inches long, though that is by no means true across the board. Unfortunately, there is no industry standard for the size of a piece of sod. Each farm will cut its product differently. Some companies cut their sod in sections that are 5-feet wide and 9-feet long. Other companies are 80-inches long and 18-inches wide.
The best way to learn the dimensions of the sod slabs or rolls that will come on your pallet is by checking with the local sod farm or distributor you’re interested in buying from.
You can also check with your local nursery or box store to order pallets of sod cut in the size you prefer. Each local company will likely have different sizes available based on which farm they purchase from.
This is also prone to change through the season as new suppliers have sod ready.
How Thick is a Piece of Sod?
Different sod comes in different thicknesses. This is also not a universal standard, though thickness usually ranges from 1-inch to 3-inches thick. The type of grass (and its root depth) plays a role in determining how thick your piece of sod will be.
If you determine how thick you need your sod, you can purchase it accordingly.
The simplest way to measure is to see how your yard’s soil compares to the height of your sidewalk or another relevant metric. If the soil in your yard is 3-inches below the sidewalk, you want sod that is as close to 3-inches thick as possible.
How Heavy Is a Piece of Sod?
The standard weight for a piece of sod is about 15 to 30 pounds, though it can be heavier depending on its moisture content. The wetter the soil, as well as the larger the piece, make each piece of sod heavier.
Sod is also heavier when it’s fresher, as it will have more moisture in it. As it dries, it loses weight. Its thickness is also a key determinant of its weight. Sod is heavier if it’s thicker.
A full pallet of sod usually contains up to 100 rolled pieces, but the square footage of sod pallets will vary a bit, so be sure to ask when you place your order.
How Recently Was the Sod Cut?
Sod should be purchased immediately before its planned installation. When you buy sod, it should have been cut within a day of its delivery.
If you order directly from the farm growing sod, it will be fresher, which is better for you. However, when buying sod from a nursery, it should still have arrived there within a day of you seeing it.
Never buy a pallet of sod that has been baking in the sun for an unknown number of days.
Once the sod is harvested, it can last up to 5 days rolled up on a pallet. That largely will depend on the weather and season in that area. If you live in a warm area or it’s a hot season, you could have as few as 12-hours to install your sod and get the best results.
Do I Need a Full Pallet?
If you’re trying to fill a large yard, you’re going to need a large amount of sod to accomplish that task. Buying sod by the pallet will likely be your best solution.
The number of pieces of sod per pallet changes by the farm harvesting it. Farms that use smaller pieces of sod will have more rolls or slabs per pallet, but often the square footage is similar from one pallet to the next.
- A farm of sod that’s 16-inches by 24-inches will have about 170 pieces of sod per pallet.
- Meanwhile, a farm that packages 5-foot by 2-foot sod pieces will only have about 60 pieces of sod per pallet.
By volume, there is little distinction in the amount of area it covers, but you should still inquire when placing your order.
I recommend that you order 10% more sod for your yard than the square footage you plan to cover. These online tools to measure lawn size can help you determine how much to order for your project.
There’s always some cutting and some waste, so the extra 10% you order will usually be needed and used.
Having that extra 10% available will also prevent you from running out of product when laying sod in your yard.