Sunday
Aug222010

Best Practices For Watering Your Lawn

The most common question I get from new clients is “how much and how often should I water my lawn”...


Each plant requires a certain amount of water to remain healthy. Turf requires more water than trees and shrubs because larger plants have more and deeper feeder roots to scope out the available moisture. You will also take into account the amount of rainfall you are getting each week, sunny vs shady areas, areas with drainage issues.


In the Spring, Fescue needs 1 inch of water about every 5 days. During Springtime, it is better to stretch out the watering schedule and give one soaking water each 5 days. This practice will train your grass roots to grow vertically, deep into the soil profile.


As you move into Summer, watering frequency will need to be increased to every 3-4 days. In July and August, fescue will begin to go dormant without watering at least every 3 days.  You will want at least 1.5”-2” of water each week.


TIP: Each watering system will put out a different amount of water, based on your water pressure. To find out how long you need to run your system, place an empty tuna can or similar container on the lawn. Water the area and time how long it takes to accumulate .25” in the container. If it took 15 minutes, multiply by 4 to find out how long you need to water to get 1” of water on the lawn.


During the Fall it will be time to reseed the lawn. Once the lawn is seeded, ideally you will want to water lightly twice a day until the seed has germinated (about 7-10 days). Then water every other day until the first mowing. Once the turf is cut, resume the Spring watering schedule.


Although Bermuda grass does not require as much water in the Spring or Fall, increased watering in the Summer (when actively growing) is needed for a thriving Bermuda lawn.


Moisture manager.  This is a fantastic product that has resulted from technology advancements in the industry. EcoSential Moisture Manager is a completely organic product that is sprayed onto the lawn and lasts for 3 months. Unused water molecules are attracted to the grass plants and converted into microscopic water droplets. This can be used in the fall to accelerate and improve seed germination rates. Drought stress will also be minimized and watering requirements will be reduced when used in the summer. This product is very affordable and should be a common treatment as we become more conscious of water conservation. Ask your lawn service provider for more information or feel free to contact me directly.


I highly recommend an annual irrigation system tune up. This includes inspecting all the heads to make sure they are covering the correct turf areas, repairing broken heads, checking and repairing leaks, programming your timer, and inspecting your backflow preventer (this is required annually by the state). This service will save you a lot of money on your water bill over the course of the year as well as help conserve water through the drought.


If you have misting or pop-up spray heads in your shrub and flower beds, you should consider having them converted to a drip line. Drip watering is allowed during the water restrictions and will provide adequate water to ornamental trees, shrubs, and flower beds. Typically, your trees and shrubs represent the biggest investment on the outside of your property and need to be protected. Drip-line conversion is very inexpensive and will protect your investment.


Please contact your preferred Irrigation Professional or Whitehouse Lawns for irrigation tune-ups, audits, repairs, or drip conversion. 

Charlotte Lawn Service