Who Knew Watering Your Lawn Could be so Complicated?
The Effects Of Under and Over Watering
Over-watering often results in disease development as well as the growth of fungus. It interferes with the uptake of nutrients and can even leach soluble fertilizer and lawn chemicals down into the ground water. In addition, over-watering prevents the roots from absorbing oxygen which leads to the inhibited development of root systems.
Lawn watering changes with the seasons. In the warm months of Idaho summers, in areas like Boise, Meridian, Eagle and Nampa, a lawn needs almost twice the amount of water that it will need in spring and fall. Winter watering should be done in warm dry winters to prevent desiccation. However, do not water after the first freeze. Idaho land owners who have acreage properties, farms, ranches, or horse properties may need to round up information from their local water company, irrigation or canal company to verify their water rights and times of usage.
Different soils absorb water at different rates. Loamy and clay soils hold water better than sandy soils and can be watered less often. If the the soil is compacted or heavy clay, the water should be applied in short increments to give the soil time to absorb it.
A quick way to know if a lawn is being over-watered is to survey the ground. Clearly, if there are standing puddles then the water is being applied too quickly for the grass and soil to soak it up. Watering should be lessened into shorter intervals.
The amount of water that the ground holds is referred to as soil penetration, filling the soil or soil moisture. Soil moisture can be checked in several different ways. The easiest is to take a long screwdriver and push it into the ground. After pulling it back up, measure the amount of moist soil. This test allows a new Idaho home buyer to quickly find out if the current watering system is adequate. Twelve inches is optimum for healthy lawn growth. If there is less than six to eight inches, then the lawn needs to be watered more frequently.
When To Water
The best time to water is as close to dawn as possible. The cooler temperatures prevent the lawn from being scorched as well as helping it keep cool in summer months. The early morning sun will dry off water not absorbed by the plants or soil.