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When is the Best Time to Water?

by Dawn West, All About Lawns Columnist

With the advent of drought, heat waves, and water restrictions, it is now more important then ever to use water in the most efficient and effective manner when watering your lawn. In order to do this, it is important to understand the obstacles to doing so: high heat, evaporation, wind, lawn diseases, and politicians (water restrictions). So here a few guidelines you can follow:
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  1. Always try to water your lawn in the early morning. By early morning, I'm referring to around 5 a.m.! This is the BEST time for watering, bar none. Early morning watering is best due to: the lack of evaporation that takes place, low winds that can blow you lawn dry, high humidity and morning dew that adds to the moisture. Early morning watering helps to prevent lawn diseases that can be caused by watering at night because it gives your lawn time to dry by night fall. Obviously, this can be best accomplished with a sprinkler system, unless you just can't sleep, especially during the summer months. For a list of sprinkler system companies near you see: Lawn Companies & Services in your Area.
  2. If you have just planted a new lawn,you will usually need to water once a day so the seeds can germinate and a good solid root system can form. On average, this can last from 2-8 weeks, depending on the type and grass and season.
  3. Try watering a day before mowing if you plan on mowing your lawn and hate the browning that forms on the crowns (tips) of the grass afterwards. This will allow your lawn to recover from the cutting and help it to look nicer as a result!
  4. Water in the Morning
    Water in the Morning
  5. If you have recently fertilized your lawn, especially with a granular (dry) fertilizer, thenyou may want to water a few extra times, especially during dry and hot summer months. This can help the fertilizer take hold and aid in preventing the fertilizer from "burning" the grass. For more information on fertilizing, see: Fertilizing.

About the Author
Dawn West B.A. holds a B.A. in English from Harvard University and teaches writing at Oregon State University.

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