Manage Your Turf's Thirst

Submitted on June 7, 2016

As Canada enters summer-like conditions, lawns begin to dry out. This is the time that you should start contemplating on supplementing your lawn’s water supply to manage your turf’s thirst. This is particularly important when you are paying for a professional lawn care program that delivers services dependent on weather conditions. Before you begin watering your lawn, you must make certain that it really needs water supplementation. The following is a list of tips and tricks that you can use to determine if your lawn’s thirsty.

LOCAL WATERING RESTRICTIONS OR BANS. 

Many municipalities enforce lawn watering restrictions throughout the summer months. Contact your municipal government, or contact your local Weed Man to determine if you have water restrictions or bans in your area. Water restrictions are important, and are usually posted in your local newspaper or your municipal website.  They are put into effect to protect your municipality’s water supply. Please do the proper research to ensure that you comply with your municipality’s regulations.

FOOTPRINT TEST.

Walk across your lawn and observe your footprints. If your footprints don’t bounce back but stay visible on your lawn, this is a sign that your lawn is getting too dry and water may be needed.

COLOUR TEST.

Is your lawn vibrant and green in colour, or does it have a blue-green, or even brownish tint. If your lawn has taken on a blue-green or brownish colour, this is a good indication that you should start watering.

GROWTH RATE.

Assuming you are mowing your lawn properly, you may have had to mow your lawn quite often this spring. Are you mowing less? If you are able to wait longer than a week before having to mow, your lawn may be in need of water.

SCREWDRIVER TEST.

Insert a screwdriver into your lawn (soil). If the screwdriver is hard to insert and/or the screwdriver is not moist when pulled out, these are signs that your lawn soil is dry and needs some water.

The ideal time to water your lawn is in the early morning. Afternoon watering results in wasted resources, considering a lot of the water evaporates in hot, dry weather conditions. Alternatively, evening watering can result in too much standing water, leading to various forms of turf disease. The most common error with irrigation systems is that they generally apply light water daily, which can lead to shallow roots and turf disease. If you water lightly for short periods of time, focusing solely on the grass blades, the roots can actually grow closer to the soil surface. Light, frequent watering can make your grass plants weaker, because shallow roots make them more susceptible to drought, lawn disease and insect issues. Deep and infrequent watering is the best watering practice and is much better than more frequent light watering. Watering an established lawn heavily and infrequently promotes healthy strong root growth because it allows water to reach a deeper soil depth. Typically, your lawn requires 3-4 cm of water per week, depending on soil type, weather and rainfall conditions. To properly water your lawn, wet the soil to a 7.5 to 10 cm depth. This means approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour in each area with your sprinkler. Deep watering should create enough moisture reserve so that you will not need to water again for a number of days, depending on rainfall amounts. For more information on managing your turf’s thirst, please contact your local Weed Man professional or visit our website, www.weedmancanada.com.

Category
Tags