Lawn Maintenance - Knowledgebase Question

Fontana, CA (Zone 8B)
Question by patr1cksy
April 19, 2007
What is the best time to water my lawn ?
We get windy or hot weather in our region. How many times a day should I set my sprinkler timer?
What fertilizer or lawn food should I use, and how to apply ?


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Answer from NGA
April 19, 2007

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University studies show that early morning is the best time to water a lawn. You'll lose less moisture to evaporation and it will give the grass plants a few hours to soak up the moisture before the sun gets too hot. I run my sprinklers in 15 minute segments with a 15 minute period between runnings. Depending upon your soil type, you may only need to run them twice every 2-3 days. First, find out how much water your sprinklers deliver in 15 minutes. Your goal is to apply one-inch of water every 2-3 days during the hottest months of the year. To measure the output, place several empty cat food or tuna cans on the lawn and run your sprinklers for 15 minutes. Check to see how much water has collected in the cans. Run the sprinkler system for as many 15 minute segments as it takes to collect one inch of water in the can. That's how many times you'll need to run your sprinklers.

General lawn fertilization should include one pound of nitrogen per 1000 square feet of lawn, per year. Use a 3-1-2 ratio of NPK divided into four applications (April, June, September and late November or early December). For instance, choose a fertilizer with a 21-7-14 formula.

Hope this answers all your questions!

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