What are the Best Methods for Lawn Watering?

Sheri Cyprus

The best methods for lawn watering depend on the type of soil, grass and climate. Understanding the effects of these three factors together can help each homeowner choose the best lawn watering routine. It's important to have a set routine for watering grass since straying from it even once can cause unattractive results such as brown spots on the lawn.

Dry spots on a lawn.
Dry spots on a lawn.

Brown spots and dry patches on lawns signal grass in desperate need of water. Another sign that lawn watering isn't being done regularly is imprints of shoes left after people walk across the grass. Generally, a lawn should be watered once a week, but soil, grass and climate differences may alter this basic rule of thumb.

Many people choose sprinklers to water their grass.
Many people choose sprinklers to water their grass.

A loam soil type is usually considered the best type for grass. Lawns grown on clay or sandy soils may need watering more than once a week. In some cases, a soil filler called an amendment can be added to improve the distribution of water to the lawn's roots.

It stands to reason that lawn watering may not be needed once a week in climates that experience heavy rains. However, the rains may last only for a certain season; watering once a week or even more could still be needed during drier seasons. In areas with low humidity, watering in the late afternoon or evening isn't a good idea because the water won't be likely to evaporate overnight. In high humidity and drier climates, lawn watering late in the day may work well, otherwise early morning is the best time.

To be at their best, most lawns require about 1 inch (2.54 cm) of water once a week. Deeply rooted grass may need less water. Some varieties of grass also need less water. These include Kentucky blue, bent and rye grasses. Lawn grass varieties that tend to require more water include Bermuda, Saint Augustine and buffalo.

The best way of distributing water during lawn watering is by a timed sprinkler or irrigation. Sprinklers don't always distribute water evenly, so timers help solve this problem. Irrigation is a system of underground, timed sprinklers. If the budget for an underground installed sprinkler system is lacking, above ground, timed sprinklers make a good option.

Soaker hoses, the flat hose styles with rows of holes, are best for narrow spaces. Soaker hoses work well for lawn watering along the edges of walkways. They can also be placed directly in flower beds.

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