A good watering routine helps to maintain your lawn, but it’s important to know how much is too much, or you could end up with a garden that resembles a bayou more than a botanical garden!
Despite the British weather often putting a damp spell on our summers; it’s not uncommon for lawns to become dehydrated and suffer from drought throughout the drier months.
What to look out for
Watering a lawn isn’t a set routine which can be applied to every garden from Perth to Plymouth; it can depend on a number of factors and may vary significantly from garden to garden. The main factors to consider are location, soil type, shade and other things that may be present such as tree roots, however it’s best to look at a few key things when assessing whether your lawn needs a top up. The first sign of dehydration is when grass begins to lose it’s ‘springiness’ and is very flat after being walked on, but the most obvious thing to look out for is when grass begins to yellow. If there’s no rain being forecast any time soon then it may be time to water and if done correctly your lawn should bounce back almost immediately.
How to water
If you’ve just sown a brand-new lawn, making sure the grass has access to plenty of water is vital to ensure successful germination and establishment. It’s often assumed that light, regular watering is the best way to hydrate young grass, but the opposite is actually true. Heavy and irregular watering helps grass develop deep root systems whilst also reducing the chance of diseases and weeds making an appearance. Water 2-3 times in the first week after sowing, although care should be taken to avoid over watering. From the second week on, begin to reduce the frequency until you’re watering every 10-14 days at most.
Once grass is fully established or if you’ve already got an existing lawn, then watering isn’t always necessary. Grass can recover from very dry spells even after it begins to brown, so don’t be too hasty with the sprinklers. Follow the same guidelines as above, watering no more than once every 10-14 days and try to keep watering limited to the morning to avoid having a damp lawn overnight.
What to use
People use a range of methods and equipment when applying water to their lawns and these can vary from a simple watering can to a Wembley worthy sprinkler system. This depends a lot on practicality and personal preference, a watering can will do a fine job but using it on a 500m2 lawn may not be the most practical method, so static or rotary sprinklers are usually a worthwhile investment. The important thing to remember is that regardless of the tools used, following the tips above will help you maintain a good watering routine.