How to Water Your Lawn Correctly: Frequency and Duration
If you want your lawn to look healthy and lush, proper watering is crucial. Watering too much or too little can lead to a patchy lawn and can also increase your water bill. So how much and how often should you water your lawn? In this article, we’ll discuss the best practices for watering your lawn to help it thrive.
Before deciding on the frequency and duration of watering, it’s important to understand how much water your lawn needs. Generally, lawn grass needs about 1 inch of water per week. However, this may vary depending on your soil type. Proper drainage is also important for maintaining a healthy lawn. A loamy soil is the ideal balance for achieving proper drainage.
Length of Watering
When it comes to watering your lawn, the important question is not how long to water it, but rather how much water to give it. On average, it takes one hour of watering to put out the required 1 inch of water per week. But instead of providing the entire amount at once, you can water for 30 minutes twice a week. Overwatering can cause roots to sit too close to the surface, making them susceptible to heat stress and pest damage. Less frequent watering encourages roots to reach deeper in search of water, making them less susceptible to damage.
When to Water
The best time to water your lawn is early in the morning when the sun is low in the sky, and there is less evaporation. This gives the water time to seep down into the root zone before the heat of the day causes evaporation. The grass blades will have all day to dry out before nightfall, minimizing the chance of fungal diseases.
Cool- vs. Warm-Season Grasses
Different grasses require different amounts of water. Cool-season grasses in the Northeast need to be watered most in late spring, summer, and early fall, up to three times a week in warmer weather. Continue to water throughout fall, but reduce the frequency, as the grass will largely be deprived of water during the winter. Most warm-season grasses, such as Bermudagrass, are drought-tolerant and can be watered less frequently.
"If you notice that your plant’s stems are soft and squishy, it’s likely that you’re overwatering. This happens because the plant is taking in too much moisture. It then starts to puff up and lose firmness. If the soil is also wet to the touch, you’ll want to cut back on watering."– Jeremy Yamaguchi, CEO of Lawn Love
Signs of Over- or Under-Watering
It’s important to look out for signs of over or under-watering, as both can damage your lawn. Overwatering can cause the grass to have a spongy feel, and can cause the roots to rot. Under-watering, on the other hand, can cause the grass to turn yellow and eventually brown.
"Signs of underwatering the plants include yellow or brown spots on foliage, wilting leaves, dry and crumbly soil, and shriveled and dry roots. Also, when you go to water the plant, notice the speed at which it is taking in the water – faster may indicate that it is dehydrated. On the other hand, overwatering can result in root rot and slowed growth, as well as signs such as droopy leaves, root-bound soil, an excessively damp surface soil layer, fungus growth on the plant’s leaves and stem, and more discolored foliage." – Cynthia Drachenberg, Founder at CynthiaDrachenberg.com
In conclusion, watering your lawn properly can make a big difference in the health and overall appearance of your lawn. By understanding how much water your lawn needs, and the best times and methods for watering, you can help your lawn thrive. If this seems too much work consider installing a Smart Sprinkler System that autonomously does everything for you...