When and how often do I water?
The best time to water is in the early morning, between 4 and 6 AM. This allows your lawn to get a nice drink before temperatures heat up, evaporating the moisture off the plant. Watering early in the morning reduces the susceptibility for fungal and disease growth. Under normal conditions, your lawn needs approximately 1-2 inches of rain or water each week. As the temperatures heat up, the need for water rises to as much as 3-4 inches per week. However, these figures are rough guidelines and some experimentation is required to determine your lawn watering needs. Deep, infrequent watering is recommended to encourage your turf to reach down into the soil to seek out its water. If water is provided to the root surface every day, the roots will remain on the surface making your turf susceptible to drought and high heat.
How do I determine how much water my lawn is getting each week?
A simple rain gauge bought at home depot or an empty cat dish is your best bet to determine the amount of water that is provided to you lawn. There is not a definitive formula to determine your lawn’s individual watering needs. However, the measurements above are a good benchmark to begin with. The ideal watering conditions for your turf are when the water provided is able to evaporate throughout the day. If you walk on your lawn and it squishes below your feet, your lawn is too wet. If you walk across your lawn and you can see your footprints from where you walked, your lawn is too dry.
I am watering every day, but I just can’t seem to keep the lawn from drying out! What should I do?
If this is the case, soil improvements are likely necessary. Adding compost topsoil blend to your soil in conjunction with aeration will work valuable organic material to the soil that retains water better than hard packed clay. Adding compost over several years to break down the top layer of soil and encourage the roots to grow deeply into the soil will reduce your irrigation needs for the summers to come.
I have large dead spots, is there anything I can do?
Dead spots this time of year may come from several causes. Fungus has showed its ugly head more than ever this year due to a damp spring. There is not much that can be done to repair this damage in the heat of the summer. However, fungal activity can be stopped with the application of a fungicide to prevent further damage. The existing damage can be repaired this fall with overseeding. To prevent fungal damage in the future, inquire about adding fungicide treatments to your lawn treatment package!