Summer in Texas can be brutal – especially for our turfgrass. And with watering restrictions in place for Lubbock residents, maintaining that lush green carpet can be challenging. Fortunately, all is not lost. You can do many things to help your lawn maintain adequate moisture levels – even in the face of drought.
Lawn Care Best Practices For Keeping Moisture Levels Up
Even During Droughts And Watering Restrictions
Watering Deeply > Watering Frequently
During periods of intense drought and watering restrictions, you wouldn’t be faulted for thinking any extra water you can give your lawn is a good thing. Right? No, actually! Even if there weren’t watering restrictions, it’s not good to water your lawn every day. Doing so trains the grass to grow shallow roots. After all, the next dose of water is coming up tomorrow. Instead, watering infrequently teaches grass to produce deeper roots and learn to be tough. Grass only needs about an inch of water a week. In addition to watering infrequently, water deeply. This means leaving your sprinkler system or a hose attachment for at least 30 minutes, up to one full hour. Doing this once a week will produce greener, more robust grass – even during the hottest and driest part of the year. And speaking of sprinklers…
Think About Upgrading To An In-Ground Sprinkler System
With a professionally installed irrigation system, you can water the lawn with a flip of a switch. Untangling the hose, attaching the sprinkler head, winding up the hose again, remembering to turn off the sprinkler, so it doesn’t run for hours – all of that is a pain. You can take the headache and guesswork out of maintaining your lawn’s moisture levels. Modern systems are equipped with moisture sensors, so you don’t overwater and waste money. Many are also equipped with timers. You could set it to only operate within the water restriction timetables, so you can set it and forget about it!
Repair Damaged Areas Of The Lawn
When grass has thinned out – or died – it ruins the appearance of the lawn and creates dusty conditions during droughts. After all, grassroots are what hold all that soil in place. Ashton Walden can overseed your lawn, so it’s thick again. It’s more affordable than a sod application, it blends in easily with your existing property, and new grass will help prevent soil loss.
Eliminate Competing Weeds
When weeds rear their ugly heads, they compete for resources with our turfgrass – whether it’s water or soil nutrients. Fortunately, Ashton Walden offers weed control as a lawn treatment, so you won’t have to shop around and compare the many, many herbicides on the market. By treating your lawn with pre-emergent and post-emergent herbicides throughout the season, you’ll give your yard a fighting chance.
Don’t Let Your Lawn Care Routine Lapse
When it’s scorching outside, the last thing you may want to do is break out the mower. Unfortunately, you’ll need to resist the temptation to be lazy – or your grass will suffer. So make sure to mow with regularity! Never remove more than the top 1/3 of the grass blade. You don’t necessarily have to stick to a strict schedule. Observe your lawn every day and make a call. Drought can stunt the grass’s growth, so you may need to mow less. Your grass should never be longer than three inches, especially in Texas, where we predominantly have warm-season grass varietals.
Keep Up The Fertilizer
By fertilizing your lawn multiple times throughout the spring, summer, and fall, you’ll help the grass store up nutrients so it can utilize them later – like during the driest parts of summer. Regular fertilizer applications also ensure your lawn looks green, grows tall, and repels pests and diseases.
Put Those Grass Clippings To Good Use
Instead of bagging the grass clippings, consider using the mulching attachment. Keeping the trimmings on the lawn helps your turfgrass retain moisture. Some homeowners don’t like to do this because they worry about their lawn looking sloppy and that the clippings will smother the turfgrass. We can assure you that as long as you mow often enough – and the clippings aren’t very long – you won’t have to worry about suffocated turfgrass. Plus, the clippings will put nutrients back into the lawn as they break down. It’s a win-win for your turfgrass.
Water Early In The Morning
Watering during the hottest part of the day – i.e., any time after 10 AM – is a waste of time and money. The sun will evaporate that moisture before your lawn has a chance to soak it up. Instead, water between 6 AM – 9 AM so your grass has a chance to drink before the hottest parts of the day. Conversely, you should also avoid watering late at night. A little evaporation during the day is a good thing. It prevents conditions favorable to things like molds, mildews, and fungi. If you water after the sun’s gone down, all that moisture will linger in the soil and act as an open invitation to pests and diseases.
Let Us Help Your Thirsty Lawn
For 25 years, Ashton Walden Turf Services has provided lawn service to thousands of homeowners in Texas. We’re happy to go over your concerns and answer any questions you may have.
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