Watering - Knowledgebase Question

Memphis, Te
Avatar for ashleyinteri
Question by ashleyinteri
July 24, 2010
I read in the lawn care about watering once a week. Im in zone 8, on sand, and its over 100 almost everyday. I get full sun in my yard for at least 9 hours.
I water every other day for 30 mins, my yard is starting to look sad, what would you recommend?


Answer from NGA
July 24, 2010
Watering frequency and amounts really do depend upon your soil type and the weather so there's really no set rule in watering. Most turfgrasses are happy with about one inch of water per week. One way to judge the amount of water your sprinklers are providing is by setting some empty cat food or tuna cans on the lawn and running the sprinklers. Start with running them for 15 mintues and then checking to see how much water has collected in the can. Your goal is a half inch if you water twice a week or one inch if you water once a week. The time it takes to deliver the proper amount of water is the length of time you should run your sprinklers. If water begins to run off the lawn before you get the required amount of water in the cans, plan on running for a while, turning the water off to allow it to soak in, then turning the water back on until the sprinklers have run for the correct amount of time.

Since sandy soil doesn't hold water well, you'll need to adjust the frequency of watering. Sandy soil doesn't hold nutrients well, either, so you may need to feed more frequently. I assume you're growing a warm season grass such as Bermuda or St. Augustine. If so, you can feed every 4-6 weeks to help keep it green. Apply a product with a 3-1-2 ratio of nutrients as this is roughly the ratio of nutrients grass takes in. So, for example, if you purchased a 15-5-10 fertilizer (15% nitrogen), you would apply about 7 pounds per 1000 square feet (1 pound / .15 = about 7). If you purchased a 21-7-14 fertilizer (21 % nitrogen), you would apply about 5 pounds per 1000 square feet (1 pound / .21 = about 5). Since the weather is hot you might want to go with a Turf Builder with Summerguard. If applied according to label directions and watered in well, it won't burn your turfgrass.

Hope this information is helpful.

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