Summer Watering Advice
Many lawns across town will experience heat stress with temperatures reaching above 90 degrees in town. Here are some basic tips to help:
Water your lawn early in the morning, preferably before 9 o’clock in the morning, in order to minimize evaporation. Avoid watering at night when possible, as this can increase your lawn’s risk of disease. You may also need to water brown areas of your lawn by hand that got missed by sprinklers. Water your lawn 15-30 minutes everyday when temperatures are above 90 degrees for grass that is in full sun. Keep in mind, this does not necessarily apply for cooler days with cloud cover, or grass that is in shaded areas. Do not water when we get rain or during times of high winds.
It is not uncommon for grass to suffer from heat stress during the heat of the summer. Look out for the signs, which include lines left in the grass from mowing, or the grass turning a grayish-blue color, thinning, wilting or turning brown and crispy. Using a soil conditioner is a powerful way to help browning lawns recover. Mow your lawn at a higher length, around 3 inches, to help your grass lock in the moisture it receives. When you allow your grass to maintain some length, this creates insulation from the sun and minimizes evaporation.
Trees and Shrubs
As with everything, the important thing to remember with watering trees and shrubs is that it is completely dependent on the variety, sun conditions, soil conditions and various factors of the plant. A shrub on one side of your house will likely require a different watering schedule than the same exact shrub on a different side of your house or at a different property. The best way to water trees is with a long and slow drip. This enables the water to really soak deep into the ground without running off. If water does appear to be running off due to compacted soil, try wetting the soil down, let it sit and then give it a thorough watering later. Doing so allows the shallow soil to loosen up a bit so that water can reach deep tree roots. Be very observant of young, newly planted trees as they are the most susceptible to heat stress and shock. Getting on a watering schedule is the best idea and frequency should be about 2-3 times a week with a thorough, deep watering.