Water is essential to all life...too little water and we die, too much water and we drown. The same is true for the grass in our lawns. Water makes up 70-80% of the weight of our lawn grasses and the clippings alone are nearly 90% water.
The first watering of newly installed turfgrass sod is the most important. Begin watering immediately after installation of the new turfgrass. The first watering establishes how well the grass will perform for years to come.
The amount of water your lawn requires and receives will determine its overall health, beauty and ability to withstand use and drought. One inch of water a week is a watering “rule of thumb” suggested for most lawns in this area. This can vary a little depending on soil types and time of year, but generally from April through August, in this area, grass needs 1 inch of water a week either as rain or added through sprinklers.
Sprinklers vary greatly. We recommend a rotary impact type with a 50% overlap. You will need to put a raingauge or other type of container to catch the water under the sprinkler to determine the time it takes to add one inch of water to your lawn. It will probably take longer than you think. The time may vary from 3-6 hours depending on nozzle size and your water pressure at the sprinkler.
Look at your lawn to determine its water needs. Grass in need of water will have a blue-gray cast, rather than a blue-green or green color. Also, footprints will still appear after a half-hour or more on a lawn in need of water, while on a well watered lawn, footprints will completely disappear within a few minutes. Inspecting your lawn frequently will help you detect water requirements and avoid over– or under-watering.
Water timers can help provide consistency and even be programmed or set to turn on and off when no one is awake or at home. Some timers measure just the amount of time that water is flowing through the device, while other measure the gallons of water flowing through them. Be sure to read the instructions with your timer and determine how yours operates.
Most people would rather be doing other things than mowing the lawn, but frequent mowing at the proper height will greatly enhance the appearance of the grass as well as its ability to ward off pests. If a lawn is allowed to get real long and then cut back real short, the results will be a weakened turf that will over time thin out and be subject to weed infestation.
How often you mow is going to be determined by several things– weather conditions, time of year, fertilizer program, etc. A good rule of thumb is to never cut off more than 1/3 of the grass blade. If you mow at 2 inch height, mow before the grass gets to 3 inches tall. After that and you will shock the plant and set it back.
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