Lawn watering is a tricky task, especially if you are new to the home ownership game. There are many factors that contribute to how often and how much water your lawn requires. For example, where do you live? Is the soil sandy or clay-based? What type of grass do you have? But for now, let's start with some general tips that apply in most regions!
When should you water your lawn?
Water your lawn in the early morning hours or evening hours when it's cool outside. If it's hot and humid outside, water your lawn during those times too. Lawns need about an inch of water per week to stay healthy and green so make sure to measure how much rainfall there has been before watering your lawn again. Avoid over watering because if a lot of water is applied at once, it can cause fungus growth on plants which will affect the health of your entire yard. Be careful not to overdo it!
How Often Should You Water Your Lawn
You now know when to water, but the question still remains, how often should you water your lawn? Answer is easy! Your lawn needs about 1” - 1 ½” of water per week! It’s suggested to water deeply only 2-3 times a week during the summer months. Cutting back on watering when it’s very hot outside, as this will increase evaporation rates and can lead to brown patches in your lawn. Yes, that includes watering year round. It sounds crazy, I know. Why would I water my lawn in the winter? Well, if you live in the north and get tons of snow, that doesn’t necessarily mean a lot of water. A foot of snow only equals one inch of rain! Even if the grass and plants are dormant, the roots are still growing slightly. Watering in the winter will strengthen its ability to fight damage and survive the long winter months. While in the summer months, where you water every 2-3 days, in the winter, you would only need to water your lawn and plants every 2-3 weeks for only 15-20 minutes if the air temperature is above freezing and the soil isn’t frozen.
Believe it or not, you can actually be overwatering your lawn. If your grass is squishy under your feet a few hours after you have watered, it is a sign that you have over-watered your lawn. If your grass gets too much water, it actually doesn’t get enough oxygen and can actually suffocate and that’s where you can also get brown patches in your lawn and make your grass more susceptible to diseases.
Types of Watering Systems
With all the different types of watering systems it’s easy to get overwhelmed by all the different choices. The main irrigation systems are surface, sprinkler and drip/micro. Surface irrigation entails water flowing by gravity over soil. Water is usually supplied by gravity from the water source through canals, pipes or ditches to the field. Sprinkler irrigation applies water to soil by spraying or sprinkling water through the air onto the soil surface. Water is pressurized and delivered to the irrigation system by a mainline pipe, which is often buried so it does not interfere with farming operations (this is mostly used for field crops). Micro Irrigation applies water at low rates and pressures to discrete areas so irrigation water reaches the root zone with minimal losses. Water drips from emitters in plastic pipe or tape, or bubbles or sprays from small emitters that only wet a portion of the soil surface. Choosing an irrigation system is a difficult task. Irrigation systems are as varied as the people who use them. The right selection for a user depends on soil, water and climatic conditions as well as crop types, user knowledge and preference, capital and operating costs, and infrastructure availability.
With all of these tips, you should be able to water your plants effectively without worrying too much about over-watering them. Just remember that it’s better to err on the side of caution and avoid overwatering as this can lead to root rot and fungus growth among other things. If any of our readers have questions or would like more information on how to care for their plants, feel free to contact us at any time! We are always happy to help out with gardening advice!