The Q&A Archives: Watering Lawn

Question: I know it is best to water deeply and less frequently, but how do I know how much water to put on my lawn each time I run the sprinklers?

Answer: Your lawn will need about one inch of water per week. You can put a rain gauge out in the garden to check the amount of rainfall and then supplement with water when needed. How long to run your sprinklers depends upon your soil type and your water pressure. To test how much water your sprinkler provides, place several tuna cans on the lawn near the sprinkler and run the water for 15 minutes. Check the level in the cans and decide whether you need to run the sprinklers longer than 15 minutes. If water puddles on the surface of the soil, or runs off into the street during the length of time it takes to apply one inch of water, you may need to run the sprinkler for 15 minutes, wait a half hour and then turn the sprinkler on again. Once you've figured out how long to run the sprinkler and how long you need to wait for the water to soak into the soil, you'll be able to judge when and how long to water.

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