How Much Water Does Your Lawn Need – Watering your lawn seems like a fairly simple task. Turn the sprinkler on, do something else, and come back after a while to turn it off again. But as with most things about caring for your lawn, simplicity can be deceiving. While basic watering doesn’t require much thought or consideration, getting the most out of watering your lawn requires a little extra care. If you want your lawn to look its best all season long, you need to pay attention to watering. It’s not rocket science, but a little planning can make a big difference.
One of the most common lawn care questions we get is how often to water. Some lawn professionals are happy to tell you to water once a week and leave it at that. But we are interested in good lawns, not just good lawns. And to get the most out of your lawn, you need to decide what your lawn needs.
How Much Water Does Your Lawn Need
Not all lawns are the same, and not all lawns are the same. How often the lawn is watered depends on many factors. Of course, the current weather is one of the most important factors. When it rains, you can water your lawn less or skip watering altogether. There is no need to irrigate beyond what Mother Nature provides. The temperature also plays a role. In warm weather, your soil dries out faster and your lawn needs more water. Other factors include soil type, the amount of sun and shade on the lawn, and even the slope of the lawn.
Molloy College: Step 6
The most common answer to how often you should water your lawn is one inch per week. This can happen due to rain or irrigation. But in hot weather you may need to water twice a week. For sandy soil, a weekly soaking is sufficient and for soil with more clay water in two doses. First water for about 30 minutes, then let the water absorb. Then water for another 30 minutes. Soil with a high clay content does not absorb water as quickly as sandy soil. Irrigation at once only leads to a large amount of runoff and reduced water infiltration.
Most lawns need one to one and a half inches per week. But to be more specific, you need to do a soil test. Warm grasses such as zoysia and bermudagrass have root systems that grow up to six inches deep. Less frequent and deeper watering is best for them.
Water once a week until the top six inches of soil is moist. The easiest way to check for moisture is to stick a screwdriver with a long blade into the ground. The screwdriver should easily slide six inches into the soil. If the soil becomes hard to break through less than six inches deep, you need more water. During drought or during very hot, dry periods, you can water twice a week. Water again until the soil is six inches moist.
The most accurate way to determine how long to water is to do a soil test and determine how long it takes for the water to penetrate six inches. Do this several times and calculate the average time. However, there are other tricks.
When Is The Best Time To Water Grass In Ohio?
One of the easiest ways to measure the amount of water in your lawn is to get it with a tuna fish. Place some clean, empty tuna cans around the lawn. Try to reach different areas that may not receive the same amount of water. Determine how long it takes for the cans of tuna to fill with one inch of water.
If you want to be fancy, you can use a flow meter connected to your sprinkler system. Calculate the area of your lawn and multiply the square foot by 0.62 gallons. That’s one inch deep per square foot. Then watch your gauge to determine how long it takes to spray the required volume of water.
The best way to water your lawn depends on several factors. The size and shape of your lawn will greatly affect the best watering method. You should also consider soil conditions, as some lawns absorb water at different rates. If your lawn contains different shaded areas or different slopes, you may need to consider different watering times. Shady places take less time to moisten the soil. Sloping areas of your lawn require more water because more water goes down the drain.
When watering the lawn, it is necessary to take into account the efficiency of watering. Don’t – literally – use water that doesn’t water the roots of your lawn. Evaporation and runoff are the two most common sources of water loss. Over-wetting is another way to use more water than necessary to keep your lawn healthy.
Optimizing Irrigation Schedules: When And How Much To Water Your Lawn For Maximum Water Efficiency
To avoid losing water to evaporation, you must consider both the time of day and the type of irrigation system.
In general, watering during the hottest time of day results in the greatest water loss due to evaporation. The best time to water the lawn is early in the morning, before the heat of the day. Lower temperature means less evaporation. If cool temperatures are best, you may want to consider watering in the evening or even at night. However, we never recommend watering later than late evening. While you don’t want to lose water to evaporation, you also don’t want to leave your lawn wet for too long. Watering in the morning gives the grass time to dry out during the day. Watering in the evening or after dark keeps your lawn moist throughout the night. A wet lawn is susceptible to fungus. If you notice fungus in your lawn, you are watering too much or too late.
The sprinkler you choose to water your lawn can make or break your watering routine. Different soil types and grass conditions require different types of watering. In general, the best type of sprinkler system will cover all areas of your lawn evenly and minimize evaporation.
Pulse or impact sprinklers are ideal for mature lawns. High velocity horizontal flow covers a wide area with minimal evaporation. Impact sprinklers are typically used for ground sprinkler systems. But they are also available as mobile systems that can be attached to the end of a hose.
Why Your Lawn Has An Unquenchable Thirst For Water
For even more coverage, you can use a stand-mounted impact sprinkler. You can buy them online or at many home and garden stores. Their height means slightly more loss of water to evaporation. But for a large lawn, long-range coverage can’t be beat.
While pulsating or impact sprinklers are fine for mature lawns, new lawns or newly seeded areas require a gentler touch. One way to gently water a new lawn is to water it by hand with a sprinkler hose. For a less practical approach, you can use an oscillating sprinkler attached to the end of a hose. The oscillating sprinkler lifts water high into the air, so it loses more water to evaporation than other sprinklers, but the water falls more gently than other sprinklers, making it ideal for new lawns.
When watering your lawn, it is very important to consider the type of lawn. Different types of grass respond best to different watering regimes. TifTuf Bermudagrass needs about an inch of water per week. This can happen due to rain or irrigation. Just don’t overdo it. TifTuf Bermuda grass is also drought tolerant. But when it’s particularly hot and dry, watering twice a week can help keep your lawn healthy. If you’re ready for a great lawn, start with a great lawn. Here you can find a manufacturer for one of our varieties. This year the lawns are already “golden”. With Governor Inslee’s recent declaration of drought in the state, should you water your lawn, and if so, how much?
Before the thought of watering your lawn during a nationwide drought strikes you with dread, it’s important to recognize the root cause of the drought report:
Lawn Watering Tips
Here in the Seattle area, Seattle Public Utilities continues to assure us that water levels are adequate for summer use (i.e. lawn irrigation, filling kiddie pools and car washing), as well as for public recreation, navigation, operation of the Ballard Locks, safe passage for our salmon , adequate fishing performance and salinity control.
Unfortunately, conserving water in our area will not help our neighbors in drought-stricken parts of the state. But we continue to encourage all of our ratepayers to use water wisely and learn as much as possible about conservation through our youth programs, public education booths and free classes. Here are some helpful tips for watering your lawn wisely, courtesy of the Saving Water Partnership:
Neighborhood Sites • Ballinger Neighborhood Association • Brightcrest Neighborhood Association • Echo Lake Neighborhood Association • Highland Terrace Neighborhood Association • North City Neighborhood Association • Richmond Beach Neighborhood Association • Richmond Highlands Neighborhood Association Assoc. • Ridgecrest Area Association Related Sites • City Shoreline Water Utility • Olympic View Water and Sewer District • Lake Forest Park Water District • Lake Forest Park Sewer • Northshore Utility • Water and Sewer District Sewer Alderwood • King
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