Watering your grass is one of the most important items to maintaining a healthy lawn. Obtaining adequate hydration requires at least 2 inches of moisture per week. Depending on your climate this may increase to 2 inches of water twice per week.
By getting down into the soil 2 inches you’ll promote great root structure for your grass. Just dampening the soil or watering your lawn everyday a little bit will only allow the water to just penetrate the soil. This will make for a very shallow root system, exactly what you do not want.
Lawn Watering Management
Just before dawn is the best time to water lawn, this gives plenty of time to dry during the day. You want to maximize the amount of water consistent with good growth but with the least amount of surface wetness.
How do you know if you watered 2 inches? The easiest way to tell (not the most accurate, but it is a good indicator) is to lay out a few containers and turn on your sprinkler or irrigation system.
When you have about 2 inches of water in the container, then you could assume that you have watered 2 inches into the ground. Perhaps the best and most accurate way is to take soil sample plugs in a few different locations and visually see how far down the moisture is going.
How often should you be watering your lawn?
Lawn watering everyday is a waste of water and money. Too much watering can be harmful to your lawn creating a perfect environment for pests and diseases. A healthy lawn needs to become dry between watering. Turf that is allowed to dry will send roots further down into the soil to find new moisture.
In-ground irrigation systems are a great way to monitor lawn watering. If you want to reward your lawn and can afford, installing an irrigation system for your property will help you control watering adequacy.
How long your turf is being irrigated will keep your water bill low, since we forget sometimes the sprinkler is on and forget to shut it off.
Most homeowner and commercial irrigation sprinkler systems will have an electrical controller. There are many types of irrigation controllers with different capabilities, but most will give you the options to set the time and length of watering.
If your soil is compacted you may experience water run off or pooling. Therefore, your lawn will not absorb the water, it will most likely evaporate. In this case it is time to core aerate, and reward your turf for hanging in there.