We’ve talked about watering your yard before but on this first day of summer as our lawns begin to wither and turn brown and we hope for rain, it’s probably a good idea to revisit the proper way to save your lawn.
Mowing high is a good habit for a healthy lawn. Conserving water is another reason to keep your grass on the higher side. Scalping your yard stresses your grass and increases it’s need for water. When you water a short and stressed lawn you make it easier for weeds to germinate and grow. Water between 5am and 9am for best results.
Don’t water in the middle of the day or when it’s windy. The last few days in Kansas City have been like living in a wind tunnel. Combine watering on a windy day and watering at high noon or later means you’re probably wasting about half of your water as it evaporates or simply blows away.
Calculating how much water your lawn needs will save water and money. An average KC lawn will need water penetration of about 8 inches. This encourages deep root growth, which conserves water and reduces disease. Turn on your sprinkler for 15 minutes, wait 18-24 hours and dig a small hole in an out of the way spot and see how deep the moisture goes. For example, if those 15 minutes of watering gets you down four inches you’ll know to double your time to 30 minutes.
If you have a an underground sprinkler system you can calibrate it or use a general estimate of three times a week for 10 to 15 minutes each time. Again, watering in the early morning is best. The great thing about this kind of system is that you can program it so water at 3am and really get the benefits.
Even if you don’t give a hoot about your grass, water at least a tenth of an inch when it’s dry and hot. You may not want a lush green carpet but you also don’t want dead, dry and brown.
When it’s been intensely hot and dry the soil under your grass will begin to harden so if you haven’t been watering regularly start off slowly to encourage saturation and not just run off. This can mean watering for fifteen minutes at a time to ensure your grass gets a good soaking. Watering for short periods is also a good idea if you need to water a slope or hill.
Don’t over water as this can cause thatch build-up and when you do need water it won’t penetrate as well. Aerating your lawn once a year can reduce thatch and increase the rate that it absorbs water.
Grass is our business at Olympic Lawn and Landscape and we love to see happy, healthy lawns. If you just can’t seem to convince your grass to grow give us a call. We can fertilize, mow and pamper your lawn until it’s golf course perfect.