A Short Guide to Summer Watering
Watering your lawn appropriately is important any time of year when grass is not dormant, but it’s crucial during our region’s summers. Here’s a quick review of best watering practices that will help you keep your lawn strong and healthy all summer long.
The average yard in our service area needs about one inch of water per week year-round. Our summers can be dry, and hot days mean that even rainfall can evaporate before it can sink into soil and help sustain plants. You can track rainfall with a rain gauge or even just an empty tuna or cat food can. If rain doesn’t add up to one inch per week, it’s up to homeowners to make up the difference. As temperatures rise, it’s always tempting to overwater; actual measurements are the best way to make sure that you’re hitting your target.
WHY IS THIS SO IMPORTANT?
If enough moisture accumulates in soil, grass roots will not be able to absorb enough oxygen from the soil to keep the plant alive. The most obvious sign that your soil is too moist is if it’s slick and wet to the touch. Other indicators that you have a problem include stems that are soft instead of firm, leaves that are turning yellow or developing brown spots or edges, and a growing number of insects hanging around to dine. Pests that are attracted to moisture often enjoy wood as much as grass and may threaten your ornamental trees and shrubs as well.
Indicators of dehydration are even more obvious. Dry, brittle blades break more easily and turn from bright to dull green and ultimately grey.
A very reliable way to control the amount of water distributed across various sectors of your lawn is a sprinkler system. These are definitely an expense, but many people feel that the reliability and precision are worth the cost.
If you water in the afternoon, any water that doesn’t quickly evaporate will intensify sunlight, producing brown spots, especially at the tips of blades. Watering at night produces the opposite problem, water that sits too long at or near the surface of the soil, encouraging fungal diseases.
Your best bet is the earlier part of the morning, before 9:00 to 10:00am. The water will have time to settle into the soil before the day gets too hot. The absorption rate is also the reason why it’s better to water deeply a few times per week rather than making a short session part of a daily routine.
If you have questions about watering your lawn or any other topic related to lawn care, the experienced professionals at Southern Lawns can help. Give us a call at 334.203.4419 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule an assessment.