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Turf & Landscape Watering

July 7, 2020 @ 10:10 am by Josh Kaminski
Turf & Landscape Watering

 

Turf Watering
Watering techniques differ from lawn to lawn. Depending on if you have a newly seeded/sodded lawn or an established turf, the way you water is different but just as important. For new turf, the first thing we recommend is setting up a temporary irrigation system if you do not have in-ground irrigation. This will help ease the worry of forgetting to water your lawn. We advise setting up an automatic timer so all watering is on a consistent schedule. For new turf, we recommend watering 2-4 times a day depending on the amount of sun, wind, and temperature. The sprinklers or watering hose should cover entire seeded area completely, overlapping if necessary. Watering is the most important aspect of seed germination and sod establishment. The new turf should not be allowed to dry out completely. Watering should be gentle. Be sure to avoid puddling as this can cause seed wash-away and soil erosion. 
 

After seed has germinated or sod has been established, your watering schedule should now change. The intervals between watering should be farther apart. Once the grass grows over 2 inches high, water every other day, depending on weather. Now you can allow your turf to dry between watering. High volume of watering after the turf is established can risk fungal diseases due to high moisture conditions and especially paired with warm temperatures. After about 1-2 months of dedicated watering, your lawn should be established. At this point we recommend watering as necessary and depending on weather. Be sure to water in drought months.  

 

Quick Tip:
Do not water late in the evening or set your irrigation to run at night. Turf that is wet during cool or humid evenings is more prone to foliage diseases. It is best to water in the early morning so the sun will dry the blade surface and not allow fungal spores to germinate and develop. 
Quick Tip:
For new turf, mow to a 2 1/2-to-3 inch height as soon as you can walk on the lawn without ruining its grade. Keep mower blades sharp and mow frequently enough so only one third of the blade is removed per mow. Fertilize the turf about 6-8 weeks after seed/sod is installed. After the first year aerate annually.
   

 

Landscape Watering

The main key to having healthy plants is to water them, more importantly, water them properly. New landscapes are more susceptible to disease and insect problems, because plants are weakened, and root systems are not well established.
 
It is not easy to recommend a "one-size-fits-all" watering program due to the variations in soil conditions, plant size, rain, and temperature. Every situation is different. Over-watering and under-watering, however, is the most common cause of death for newly installed flowers, trees, and shrubs.
 
The best way to tell if you need water is by performing a simple test. Dig carefully six to eight inches near the root zone, and squeeze a handful of soil. If it is damp enough to form a ball, no water is necessary. If it falls apart easily, water. Roots need air almost as much as they need moisture. Frequent watering saturates the soil and suffocates the roots, in a very similar way that too little water does. Encourage maximum plant growth by deep but infrequent watering. Watch trees and shrubs, especially those near lawn sprinklers, for over-watering stress. Below are a few symptoms of over watering and under-watering:

 

 

Under-Watering

Soil is Dry

Leaves turn yellow or brown

Leaves are wilted

Leaves are drooping

Leaves curl

Stems or branches die back

Over-Watering

Soil is constantly damp

Leaves turn light green

Young shoots are wilted

Fungus appears

Leaves are green yet brittle

Plant has a rotting smell

   

 

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