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Tuesday, June 17, 2014

How to Water Your Lawn During Summer Heat

I know that your municipality may have you on water restrictions in the desert. And that is good. We need to manage our water resources.You need to be aware of how to water turfgrass (your lawn) to minimize water waste and optimize lawn health.

These are key principles:
  • Sprinklers are designed to apply water when there is no wind. 
  • Wet grass encourages disease.
  • Winds increase after sunup.
  • Heat resistant lawns have deep roots.
  • Sprinklers apply water faster than soils can absorb it.
  • Water lawns when half the applied water is gone.
  • Most home lawns are tall fescue or bermudagrass.
  1. Water in the early morning hours before sunrise. Don't leave grass wet during the night time. This fosters diseases. When the sun rises, winds increase. Winds blow water "off course" and water is wasted.
  2. Apply enough water to penetrate 8 to 12 inches. After the irrigation is finished the water should wet the grass roots to a depth of several inches. This waters the entire root zone of the plant.
  3. Grass on slopes should receive an irrigation divided into several smaller applications. Most irrigation sprinklers apply water too fast. This water runs off the surface to low spots or into the street. Water delivered several times in smaller amounts has less chance or running off the surface.
  4. Irrigate bermudagrass less often but with more water than tall fescue. Bermudagrass can use 25 to 40% less water than tall fescue. It has deeper roots. It should be watered differently than tall fescue.

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