While it’s true that watering your lawn is important, too much water or too little water can both be harmful to the health of your lawn. Cedar Rapids and Iowa City homeowners can save a lot of money by watering at the right times and on the right schedule.
Having your sprinkler system run all night can cause diseases. However, watering small amounts too frequently can cause shallow roots and weak grass, making it much more difficult to survive in the hot summer months. In the Cedar Rapids and Iowa City areas, we often get enough rain during the spring and early summer months but as the summer heat approaches its important to know when and how often to water.
When to Water Your Lawn
When the lawn becomes a dull green color and you can see footprints in the lawn after walking on it, most likely we haven’t gotten enough rain and it’s time to step in and water the lawn. Avoid watering between 11am and 3pm, the hottest part of the day. It’s best to water between 6am and 10am when the wind isn’t as strong and the sun isn’t too hot. This also allows a full day for the lawn to dry so as to prevent fungus and mildew. If you can’t water during the morning, try to water between 4pm and 7pm. However, this could cause fungus and mildew on the grass under the right conditions.
The Most Effective Way to Water Your Lawn
The best way to water your lawn is twice per week with approximately 1/2″ of water each time. This should take around 15-20 minutes, depending on your sprinkler. You can also use a rain gauge to determine how much water your lawn has received. Watering infrequently but in heavier amounts helps give the grass the water it needs while not over watering and causing the roots to weaken. Not only will this help your grass remain strong and resilient, you will also save money by limiting the number of days and amount of time you water the lawn.
Letting the Lawn Go Dormant
When you notice your lawn turn brown, it means the grass has gone dormant. This is not a bad thing. Healthy lawns can go for 2 months with no water and bounce back just fine in the fall. While a brown lawn does not look as appealing, allowing the grass to go dormant and not watering it will save money without hurting the lawn. However, if you have children or pets that are often on the lawn while it is dormant, you will want to consider watering. The traffic from walking and playing on the dormant grass can cause damage to the lawn by compacting the soil, making it harder to recover in the fall.
Keeping a regular lawn care program will help your lawn stay healthy so that it will bounce back easier after periods of drought. Request a free estimate for our lawn care service packages by calling 319-310-1553 or filling out our online form.