With the settled weather and increased temperatures, it is worth reminding yourselves of the best practices when applying water to a lawn.
The grass plant does not need the amount of water some people think, as it is naturally designed to use moisture through rain efficiently.
But if Mother Nature does not provide enough rain to give us the lawn we desire, wait until the grass dulls in colour or begins to sit flat and wilt after mowing as the signs that irrigation is needed.
When to Water the Lawn
While moisture is an essential part of maintaining a healthy lawn, it’s important to make sure that water is applied at the correct time of day, as using a sprinkler at the wrong time will result in mass evaporation of the water and a greater chance of disease.
Watering in the morning (preferably before 10 a.m.) is the best time for the grass plant, allowing water to be absorbed through the roots before the temperatures rise to a level where the water applied will be lost to the aforementioned evaporation.
Alternatively, you can get watering in the early evening, ideally between 5 pm and 8 pm, as with the longer daylight hours, this will allow for the grass leaf to dry before nightfall, significantly reducing the chances of disease.
Never water an established lawn between the hours of 12 noon and 3 pm, as not only will evaporation become an issue, but there is the added potential for leaf scorch during extreme temperatures.
How Much Water to Use
When watering an established lawn, you need to do so for long enough to maintain moisture in the soil profile to a depth of approximately 150mm (6 inches).
Be sure not to overwater the lawn, as excessive moisture in the upper surface will lead to shallow rooting, which in turn will give the perfect conditions for your grass to flourish.
Watering every day is not necessary, a maximum of 3 times a week, for 20 minutes per day is enough to maintain enough moisture in achieving strong growth and encouraging deep roots.
Watering after the lawn has been over sown
When watering a newly seeded lawn, the key is to keep the top 25mm(1 inch) of soil consistently moist but not saturated.
You will likely need to water the seeded area once or twice a day (again the early morning and evening periods are the preferred times).
Once the seeds start to germinate, maintain the watering and soil moisture in the upper lawn surface until the grass leaf reaches 25mm, at which point the watering process needs to be cut back to twice per week, which encourages the roots to grow deeper.
To find your local TruGreen lawn care service click here.