For the summer months, a general rule of thumb to follow when watering your grass is to provide one to one and a half inches of water each week. This is provided by both rainfall and irrigation. A good way for you to determine the moisture penetration is by probing the soil with a screwdriver or a similar item.
The frequency you will have to water your grass is dependent on how much rain has fallen in the area and the type of soil you have. If you want to try and conserve water while ensuring your grass only gets what it needs, you need to understand what factors influence irrigation frequency.
The Type of Grass Present
Different types of grass require different amounts of water. Some examples of this include:
- Healthy Tall Fescue lawns are made of deep root systems and have the highest drought tolerance of all cool-season turf types.
- During drought, Kentucky Bluegrass usually goes dormant, and then revives when rainfall resumes.
- Warmer-season grasses, such as Centipede grass, Bermuda grass, St. Augustine grass, and Zoysiagrass thrive in warmer conditions and develop deeper root systems that makes it possible for them to better withstand drought conditions. Typically, the warmer season grasses require approximately 20 percent less water than the cool season types.
Soil Type Considerations
Each soil type absorbs and retains moisture differently. A general guideline for the different types of soil and how they absorb and retain moisture include:
- Sandy: Quickly absorbs water and doesn’t need water as often. One inch of water penetrates to 12 inches into the ground.
- Loam: Absorbs distributed water evenly and doesn’t cause runoff or puddling. One inch of water penetrates to seven inches.
- Clay: Works by absorbing water slowly and can cause runoff if water is applied too quickly. It also holds water longer, which means it dries out slowly. One inch of water penetrates to four to five inches.
It’s important to note, healthy grass roots usually grow to a depth of at least six to eight inches deep.
Carefully Choose Your Sprinkler/Irrigation System
If you have a smaller lawn, a hose-end sprinkler may be sufficient. However, even with smaller spaces, using an in-ground irrigation system, with low-volume, and low-angle sprinklers can be more efficient. Also, use a timer to ensure enough water is distributed for the type of grass and soil you have.
Make sure to reset your watering schedule regularly, too. This can help ensure you aren’t overwatering or underwatering during times of rain or drought.
Get Professional Help
If you aren’t sure what type of watering schedule you need to follow during the summer months, contact The IDL Company. The professionals can help determine what type of irrigation system you need and provide recommendations for watering schedules. This team can also provide sprinkler repairs, maintenance, and other services as needed.