Proper Watering Is Key To A Successful Overseeding Lawn
Fall is the optimal time to reseed a lawn. The cooler temperatures and break from the summer drought create ideal conditions for success. Even with ideal conditions, proper watering is critical to successful overseeding. The following is a recommended watering regimen.
Water heavily immediately after overseeding. This will jump start the seed germination and help bring the seed into better contact with the soil.
For the first 10-14 days , water lightly daily being sure to soak the first inch of soil.
Back off to fewer waterings once the grass seed has germinated but be sure to water deeper into the soil. This will encourage deeper root growth.
Always water in the morning. This will allow the grass blades to dry completely, preventing disease issues.
Patience is key. Proper watering will result in better seed germination and a healthier lawn.
Watering Tips And Guidelines For An Established Lawn:
The following rules will help you determine if you should water your lawn:
- When temperatures exceed 85 degrees, watering is highly recommended and should be increased to avoid dormancy and browning of turf.
- In general, it is more beneficial to water less often and more deeply. This helps promote deep root growth, which, in turn, allows your grass to go longer between watering.
- Shady areas need less water than sunny areas. Likewise, low areas require less water than hills.
- Under watering leads to dormancy. It can take a week of watering to have a dormant lawn green up again.
- Water in the morning, rather than in the evening or mid-day. This allows more water to penetrate the soil and can help prevent fungal disease.
- Sprinkler systems are wonderful. Unattended sprinkler systems frequently waste water and lead to an unhealthy lawn.
- Over watering leads to shallow roots, increased thatch, and an environment that promotes fungal disease and weed growth.
- Know your soil. Clay soils need less water than sandy soils conversely, sandy soils require more frequent watering than clay soils.
Watering Your Lawn Automatically
There are many different ways to efficiently and automatically water your lawn. There are a few factors you should take into account. Ask yourself the following questions: How much water will I need? How large an area do I need to cover? What shape is my lawn? Is there anything nearby that cant get wet?
Here are a few popular types of sprinklers to consider:
- In-ground sprinklers These systems can be expensive, but are highly efficient. The sprinkler heads pop up automatically to water, and pop right back down when the watering is done, delivering a precise amount of water.
- Pulsating sprinklers This type shoots out water horizontally in a powerful stream, covering a large area easily. Grassroots get the level of moisture they need quickly. However, the pulsing might be too intense for newly seeded or sodded lawns.
- Oscillating sprinklers These are a good alternative for newly seeded lawns, since the force of the water is weaker, and you still get good coverage.
- Hose-end sprinklers These traditional sprinklers are the most common and come in many different types.
Make sure your automatic sprinkler is doing its job, when it needs to do its job. If the forecast calls for a lot of rain, adjust the settings accordingly. Also, make sure it isnt pointed at the streetyou dont want to soak any passersby.
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Common Myths About Lawn Watering & How To Do It Right
When it comes to watering lawns in Pennsylvania, we get a lot of questions about whats needed. From whether you should be watering your lawn in the evening to whether you should be watering your lawn in the winter, we know that there are some uncertainties about the best practices. We also recognize there is a lot of misunderstanding.
In order to clear things up, well take a look at 5 common myths about lawn watering to give you some helpful tips on whats best. These are important as proper watering is the one lawn care task that will impact your lawn more than any other.
When To Water Your Lawn
As youve probably heard, watering early is the way to go. Cutler recommends the window between 5 a.m and 10 a.m., and for a couple of reasons. Not only do you want to beat the heat of day, when too much H2O gets lost to evaporation, you also want to get the job done before the wind kicks up and messes with your sprinkler patterns, making it tough to water evenly. Breezy conditions = inefficiency.
Golf courses sometimes water in the dead of night, but thats out of necessity, Cutler says , and he doesnt recommend it. When you water after dark, you open the door to fungus and mildew, which creep in when moisture sits for too long on the grass.
When you water after dark, you open the door to fungus and mildew
The perils of these problems are especially pronounced right after mowing, when turf is in a bruised and vulnerable state . So, when you cut your turf, allow it time to recover before you water . And, of course, if you mowed that afternoon, its an especially bad idea to water that night.
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When And How Often
Watering in the morning is the best time. It allows the moisture to soak into the topsoil. It also gives any excess water more time to evaporate in the sun, thereby avoiding fungal growth.
Try to get water directly to the roots of the grass and other plants in your yard. Avoid leaving an excess of water droplets in stems and leaves.
Pay close attention to the weather reports to know when cold snaps are coming or when moisture is expected. Watering a few days before colder weather hits can actually help protect your grass from frost damage. It allows the water adequate time to soak down into the roots.
Water helps strengthen the grass to help it fight the cold. Water also helps the blades retain warmth longer than if they were dehydrated.
Want to learn more about how you can optimize the water absorption in your topsoil? Check out our Moisture Management service page for additional information!
Water only when the temperature is above 45 degrees Fahrenheit. Avoid doing so right before temperatures are expected to drop below freezing points.
Most Texas turf grasses overwinter pretty well, meaning that they go at least partially dormant in the cooler months to preserve their energy. Our friends at Texas A& M have some helpful hits about how to optimize the overwintering process.
Why Fall Watering Is Important
If your type of grass is a cool-season grass, then fall is an important growth period for your lawn. Grass does keep growing for a good part of the fall, even if you don’t see as much growth on top. Instead, much of the growth occurs underground in the root system. This is crucial to build a solid foundation for your lawn and to help it repair any damage that occurred over the summertime.
Don’t deprive it of irrigation during this critical time. An adequate water supply for grass roots is essential for proper nutrient uptake during growth periods. If your lawn isn’t sufficiently absorbing nutrients, it won’t achieve optimal health and might not survive a harsh winter.
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How Long Does Grass Seed Take To Grow
How long it will take for your new grass seed to begin to grow really depends on where you live, your climate and what type of grass you plant. It can take anywhere between 3 and 28 days for new grass seed to begin to grow.
A beautiful, vibrant lawn not only looks great, but it also provides a place for you and your family to play, relax and enjoy. A consistent water schedule for watering new grass seed is key to making sure youre growing a healthy, lush green lawn that will give you years of enjoyment and beauty.
What To Look Out For
Watering a lawn isnt a set routine which can be applied to every garden from Perth to Plymouth it can depend on a number of factors and may vary significantly from garden to garden. The main factors to consider are location, soil type, shade and other things that may be present such as tree roots, however its best to look at a few key things when assessing whether your lawn needs a top up. The first sign of dehydration is when grass begins to lose its springiness and is very flat after being walked on, but the most obvious thing to look out for is when grass begins to yellow. If theres no rain being forecast any time soon then it may be time to water and if done correctly your lawn should bounce back almost immediately.
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How Dry Is Too Dry
Conserving water is a good idea. Golf courses do it. Homeowners should do it, too. But how long can you let your lawn go without?
As with so much else in turf care, it depends. A hardy grass like Bermuda is camel-like in this regard: It can survive long bouts of deprivation. Not so with bentgrass in searing summer heat.
In drought conditions, grass does what it does in colder seasons: It goes dormant as a means of self-protection, redirecting moisture and nutrients to its roots. Its leaves turn color as a result. Dormant grass can be brought back to life just add water.
But dead grass? Well, dead grass is dead.
As with so much else in turf care, the durability of your lawn depends on many factors. But as a general rule, Cutler says, grass starts going dormant after two weeks without water. After a month, its apt to die.
How do you tell if your grass has crossed that line? One faithful indicator is its crown. Thats the thick, light colored part of the plant, just above the soil, right where the roots meet the shoots. Look closely. If theres still green in the crown, theres still life in your grass. If not, you might be out of luck.
Another way to tell is pretty simple, too: tug on the grass, Cutler says. If its roots remain intact, its probably still alive. If it uproots easily, its toast. Youll need to reseed to get it back.
Learn To Read A Lawn And Know When To Water
Turfgrass water-use rates are high during sunny and windy days with low relative humidity. In situations where lawns are not watered and rainfall is limited, grasses first show symptoms of wilt and later turn completely brown.
Signs that a lawn should be thoroughly watered for grasses to remain green and actively growing
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Watering Different Types Of Lawns
During the first year of your lawns growth, whether it’s a newly seeded, sodded, sprigged, or plugged lawn, don’t rely solely on Mother Nature to do the watering. Additional irrigation should always be provided.
When watering a newly seeded lawn, the key is to keep the top inch of soil consistently moist but not soggy. You will likely need to mist the seeded area once or twice a day . Once the seeds start to germinate, continue to keep the top 2 inches of soil moist until the new grass reaches a mowing height of around 3 inches. After that, begin to cut back watering to twice per week and soak the soil deeper, about 6 to 8 inches, to encourage the grass roots to grow down deep into the soil.
Whats The Best Time Of Day To Water The Lawn In Hot Weather
Early mornings are the best time to water the lawn for two reasons:
- Watering this early will allow the turf to absorb the majority of the irrigation water and not have it lost due to evaporation caused by the high temperatures in the afternoon.
- Watering early in the morning reduces the amount of time the leaf blade stays wet. If the turf stays wet for long periods of time combined with high temperature and humidity, harmful diseases can develop within the lawn. Diseases may include brown patch and pythium.
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Proper Lawn Watering For A Greener Lawn In The Lehigh Valley Or Buxmont Pa
If you have more questions about watering your lawn, were here to lend an ear and help you answer those questions. At Joshua Tree, we view lawn care as a partnership between us and our clients. Were doing everything we can on our end to ensure your lawn is healthy and green but it also takes some help on your end, including proper watering.
We are always available to help make that process easier and ensure that you know what your lawn needs to thrive. Theres a lot of misinformation out there but were here to help you set the record straight.
If youd like to find out more about our three lawn care program options so that your lawn can receive the best possible care, contact us for a free consultation or give us a call at 610-365-2200 so that we can answer any questions.
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Top Recommendations To Water Your Lawn Like A Pro
Apply 1 inch of water, once per week, early in the morning
Avoid watering in the afternoon because a large percentage of the water is lost to evaporation. You should also avoid evening watering because the lawn will remain wet for 12 to 15 hours, until the following morning sun dries off the lawn. This prolonged wet period can increase fungal disease incidence.
Increase watering frequency during hot periods
To maintain a lush lawn during the hot periods of the summer more frequent applications are required. Generally one application of water every 4 to 5 days is adequate. Sandy soils may require an application of water every 3 to 4 days.
Allow the surface to dry out between watering
It’s important to know that you can overwater your lawn. By allowing the surface to dry out, any disease fungi will die back, and any newly germinated weed seeds will die off. This also encourages the grass plants to grow roots deeper into the soil, making your lawn more drought tolerant. By allowing the surface of the lawn to dry out between waterings, insect eggs like those of the Leather Jacket will die off.
Or, wait for the lawn to tell you it needs water
Prior to dormancy , foot printing and premature wilt can occur. If you notice either of these symptoms, this is a sign that your lawn needs water immediately in order to avoid drought dormancy .
Raise your mower height
Measure the water with a cup
Watering on a slope
Watering near trees
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How To Tell If You’ve Watered Enough
Check the soil: To see how long it will take to soak the soil, check it every 15 minutes during your first watering. Use a shovel or screwdriver to test how deep the water has moved. Mark the time once the soil has been soaked to a depth of at least 6 inches — thats how long youll need to water your lawn in the future.
Measure with cans: Place clean, empty tuna cans in different spots around the lawn and measure how long it takes to collect 1 inch of water in each can. Since sprinkler coverage patterns may vary throughout the lawn, use the average time it takes to fill all of the cans.
Use a flow timer : Choose a timer that measures water flow in hundreds of gallons. Multiply your lawns square footage by 0.62 gallons to determine the total number of gallons needed for the entire lawn.
When watering your lawn, you may begin to notice that your lawn isnt absorbing water as quickly as it should. If you find that puddling occurs whenever you water, try watering in shorter cycles until the required time to apply the needed amount of water is met .
Misconception #: How Much I Water My Lawn Is Based On The Season
While a lot of people believe that the watering needs of the lawn are set by the season, the truth is it has nothing to do with the season and everything to do with how much moisture is present in the soil. You might be wondering, when do I start watering my lawn in the spring? The answer is that it all depends on how much rainfall is present. You could have a dry spring which requires you to ramp up your watering. The hotter and windier it is, the more quickly your lawns soil will dry out.
If youre wondering about watering your lawn in the winter, there is no need. Grass goes dormant in the winter and the cool temperatures help keep soil from drying out. No matter what the season, the answer is giving your lawn what it needs to thrive.
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Best Time To Water New Grass Seed
The best time to water grass seed is in the morning and evening. These are the coolest parts of the day, which allows water to absorb into the ground instead of evaporating. A water timer can simplify the process of when to water grass seeds, so you can easily and efficiently water your newly seeded lawn with no hassle at all.
How to water new grass seed depends on the area youve seeded. Large areas can benefit from the use of a quality rectangular sprinkler. Use a small spot sprinkler for smaller seeded areas.