Easy Guide To Watering Grass
Are you ready?
Your grass only needs water once every three days. Yep, even in the peak of summer, your grass only needs water once every three days. I know, it sounds crazy in this hot desert but, due to our unique clay soils, grass actually thrives when it gets a deep soak once every three days. (Now, to really understand this, we have to talk about soil properties…which can get a little boring. So, to keep your brain cells fresh, I put all the Boring Details at the bottom for you to read before bed.)
Sure, you can water every day if you want, but that will make your grass delicate and prone to heat stress. Plus it wastes water, our most precious natural resource! Not only do we live in a desert, but water supplies all over the southwest are dwindling due to long-term drought and overuse. It is important to realize that water is precious here in the desert and we can all do our part to save.
So help me help you grow a healthy, beautiful lawn that is also water efficient. Let’s go for the Win-Win! Check out our Easy Guide to Watering Grass (and don’t forget the Boring Details if you want to know the why’s behind the what’s).
I get it, it’s difficult to go from watering every day to watering every three days. So just take it slow. Irrigation is an iterative process of matching up your plant needs with your system outputs so we recommend just making small tweaks and gradual changes. If you currently water every day, try to water every other day and see how your grass responds. Use our guide to check your watering depth and keep working toward finding the perfect run time. If you succeeded at this, remember that as weather becomes more humid in July, August and September, you may only need to water every four or five days because your grass loses less water with higher humidity and more cloud cover.
Good luck! And thank you for doing your part to save!
The Boring Details. As mentioned, to really understand this stuff, one must understand clay soils. Soil absorbs and holds water like a sponge. Grass roots absorb the water held within the soil. The amount of water this “soil sponge” can hold varies by soil type, so it is a crucial factor to consider when watering grass. Our local clay soils can absorb a lot of water, albeit slowly, and hold it for a long time. This means that, once the soil becomes sufficiently wet from a deep watering or rain, there is a lot of water available for the grass roots for at least three days. This break in watering also encourages the roots to grow deep into the soil to reach the water, and makes the grass healthier and more resilient.
So the real trick is to figure out how long you need to run your sprinklers to get about ¾ inch of water on the grass. This amount of water is enough to infiltrate into the soil, wetting it about eight inches deep. Your grass will then spend the next three days reaching deep into the soil to drink this water and, just about the time it is getting thirsty, you’ll be dumping another ¾ inch of water on it. Repeating this schedule builds strong, deep roots and a resilient, beautiful lawn…that is wonderfully water efficient.