Watering your lawn properly is one of the most important factors in having a healthy lawn. Below are some helpful tips:
HOW MUCH/ HOW OFTEN TO WATER:
- Water at least 1 inch of water per week (80 degrees and less) – typically this is at least 1 hour per week for fixed spray heads and 2 hours for rotating spray heads.
- Water 2 inches per week once temperatures hit 85 degrees – typically 2 hours per week for fixed spray heads and 4 hours for rotating.
- To determine your water output we do recommend putting cool whip bowls (or other flat bottomed bowls) on your lawn and run through a irrigation cycle to determine how much water your system delivers for each time cycle. Adjust your time of watering so that you are not under or over watering your lawn.
- It is recommended that you try to water to a depth of 6 inches on your watering days. This can be determined by pushing a screwdriver into the area being watered.
- The more often you water the lawn the better the penetration. If your timer is set too high much of the water will run off into the streets and you will never reach the 6 inch depth.
- To effectively reach the 6-inch depth and the 2 inches of water per week (or 1 inch on your each of your watering days) you may need to water your lawn with 3-6 cycles per day. 10 minutes per cycle for fixed heads and 20 minute cycles for rotating heads.
- Please remember that all the above recommendations are averages and your system will have to be fine-tuned to your water pressure,soil conditions, slopes etc.
If you have a problem with localized brown spots, please see the information on “brown spots”.
WHEN DO I TURN ON MY WATER?
Typically your water can be turned on the last week of March to the first week of April.
If we have a dry winter and a warm spring, watering with a hose is a good way to get moisture to the lawn before your system is turned on.
Be sure that any valves or pressure vacuum breakers located above the ground are insulated with an insulating jacket. Insulating tape is not adequate. Jackets can be purchased at Lowes or Home Depot.
If you are hesitant to turn your irrigation system on please be sure to manually water your lawn and landscape plants. In March and April your lawn will need between 0.5 and 1 inch of water per week depending on the temperature.
If you wait too long to turn your system on, your lawn will typically suffer.
WHEN DO I TURN MY WATER OFF?
- In the Reno/Sparks area, we typically turn the water off the last week of October to the 1st week of November.
- If you turn it off to early your lawn and landscape plants can suffer from dehydration through the winter.
- If it does not rain or snow in November and December, it is highly recommended that you manually water your lawn and landscape plants. At this time of year your plants are growing intense root systems below the ground – but they do need water.
- Be sure that any valves and pressure vacuum breaker above ground are insulated with an insulated jacket in the month of October. This will protect your system from cracking if we get unexpected cold temperatures.