Sodding instead of seeding a lawn has advantages, particularly during mid-to late fall. You can have a lawn in two to four weeks, instead of the usual two to four months with seeding.

Sodding is more expensive, especially when you have the professionals do it. Cut costs by doing it yourself.When you purchase sod at a sod farm, be sure to buy Certified or Approved. Cheap sod may be full of weeds.

For protection from diseases, plant a mixture of varieties. Then if a particular disease infects one component, the others may be resistant. Some varieties rated as disease-resistant are Fylking, Pennsar, Baron and Adelphi.

Some people think that sodding a lawn need not be as painstaking as seeding. Actually, the soil-bed should be equally well prepared for either. Neither seeds nor sod will root well in hard ground.

The soil is best cultivated, mixing in organic matter such as compost or peat, lime (if needed) and fertilizer. Thin-cut sods have better rooting ability than thick-cut ones: Try three-fourth-inch depths.

Level the soil. In the top two inches, rake in 10 pounds of 10-6-4 or 20 pounds of 5-10-5 fertilizer per 1,000 square feet. Lay the sod immediately; but if you can't, put it in the shade, grass side up and keep it watered. If the sod dries out, it will be in trouble. Remember, at this point, the roots cannot take up water from the soil.

When you do put the sod down, make sure your soil is moist, but not muddy and soft. After laying the sod, roll it to force it into close contact with the soil. During the first week or 10 days, sprinkle the sod two or three times a day.