So you’ve recently purchased and installed your new sod; but do you often question yourself, “how long to water grass?” Or do you frequently contemplate whether you should seek the assistance of a sod professional? Watering new sod comes induces a lot of concerns and queries in your head.
Well, our comprehensive guidelines would surely benefit you by liberating you from all the trials and tribulations regarding your doubts like those concerned with watering new sod, making an ideal watering schedule for new sod and the ever-existing problem of sod overwatering.
Watering new sod in an ideal and definite manner is highly essential to attain a lush and healthy lawn. Your lawn requires water if it is appearing to be grayish or dull green. One can examine the sod by walking on it; if your footprints disappear quickly, it indicates that your sod’s grass blades have sufficient moisture to spring back.
Although, you might think you can just irrigate it at any time which is convenient to you, but the truth is that a well-laid out watering schedule for new sod makes all the difference in the world as your turf requires more specific care. How long should you water the grass? What is an appropriate watering schedule for your new sod? These doubts can be clarified by analysing the following scheduled routines:
Watering schedule for new sod primarily depends upon how long you’re watering the grass and at what hour of the day:
Morning (dawn to 9 am) is the most ideal time for watering new sod is as it is cooler and winds tend to be calmer allowing the water to soak into the soil and get absorbed by the grass roots before evaporating.
Watering in the late morning may be harmful if the lawn has become naturally wet from the dew, making way for disease issues.
Moreover, watering new sod in the evening could lead to a pretty serious fungus problem. However, if you have to water in the evening, it is advisable to do it between 4 and 6 p.m. which gives grass blades the time to dry before nightfall.
Of course watering at night is not good because of the likelihood of producing fungus and disease. If water sits on your grass at night during the warm summer nights it can cause a fungus to grow. However if you water in the early morning, before 10 am the water will have a chance to be absorbed into the soil and evaporate form the top of the grass to avoid the chance of fungus.
Watering schedule for new sod also depends on the season and weather of the year in your locality:
First Week: 2 inches a day, divided into 3-4 watering periods per day.
Second Week: 1 inch a day divided into 1-2 watering periods.
Third Week Onwards: Half inch a day; after 2-3 weeks, return to 2 times per week.
First Week: 2 inches a day, divided into 3-4 watering periods per day.
Second Week: 1-2 inches a day divided into 2-3 watering periods.
Third Week Onwards: 1 inch a day; after 2-3 weeks, return to 2 times a week.
First Week: 2 inches or more a day, divided into 4-5 watering periods a day.
Second Week: 2 inches a day divided into 2-3 watering periods.
Third Week Onwards: 1-2 inches per day; after 2-3 weeks, return to 2-3 times per week.
First Week: 1 inch a day for the first 3 days, divided into 3-4 watering periods. After first 3 days, only half inch a day.
Second Week: Half inches every 3 days.
Third Week Onwards: Once a month.
Warm-season grass types need less water than cool-season grasses. Grass requires the most amount of water in the adverse conditions of heat, low humidity, high winds and drought. Following are some of the most prominent types of grass along with their respective water requirements:
It is a warm-season grass with dark green and dense rhizomes and stolons. With its extensive and deep enough root system, Bermuda grass has an extraordinary tolerance to heat and drought. Its roots reach about 6 inches deep into the soil, but can even reach down to about 6 feet oftentimes, thus making it very resilient to environmental hindrances such as like drought, weeds and other stressors.
Water Needs: It has pretty moderate water requirements; applying of just an inch of water every 4-7 days which results in a deep and healthy root system. Refrain from applying frequent and shallow irrigation cycles as they can lead to shallow roots, which further allows weed germination.
It is also a warm-season grass with medium to coarse textured grass blade. Quite sensitive to iron deficiencies, which turn grass blades yellow, centipede grass requires low maintenance.
Water Needs: Its water needs are also quite moderate; applying of just an inch of water every 4-7 days for deep soaking during hot or dry periods. Moreover, owing to its shallow root outgrowths, centipede grass also requires extra watering during the weeks with lower precipitation.
Fine fescue is a cool-season grass with a rich green color. Due to its rapid germination and seedling establishment, it is capable of producing the finest grass blades in your lawn.
Water Needs: With low to moderate water requirements, an inch level is ideal to water the fine fescue once or twice a week during summer conditions. Keep in mind to that the fine fescue becomes dormant during summers if no water is available.
Also a cool-season grass, Kentucky bluegrass germinates more slowly than other cool season grasses, but gives a vivid and beautiful appearance thanks to its excellent leaf uniformity. With its exceptional winter endurance and high disease resistance, it has a unique ability to spread with horizontally growing rhizomes and heal itself when damaged.
Water Needs: With moderate water needs of about half to 1 inch of water for every 5 to 7 days, it is recommended to avoid shallow watering that can cause growth of weeds.
This dense, low maintenance sod is of cool-season grass which spreads by stolons and rhizomes with a slow growth rate of its shoots. Widely preferred for its tough characteristics and its ability to resilience to heat, drought and heavy traffic, the zoysiagrass creates a thick, soft carpet that suffocates weeds.
Water Needs: Application of at least 1 inch of water every 4 to 7 days is sufficient to get an extensively deep root system.
Sod overwatering is a nightmare for any lawn owner as it becomes vulnerable to weeds, diseases, and insect damage. Overwatered lawn also further creates a bunch of other issues including turf problems and usage of expensive chemical treatments.
There are several ways to avoid sod overwatering:
Overwatered lawns often get discolored, as the lower leaves become yellow. If you notice that your leaf blades are turning into a shade like grayish-green, just pull up a corner of the sod; if the soil is mushy and wet, it means you’re watering too much. You’d have to reschedule you irrigation routine to avoid sod overwatering.
If the roots are dying or dead, your sod will come right up as its roots are getting unnecessary water which first leads to their softening, then their rotting and ultimately their death due to lack of oxygen. To avoid this problematic issue, make sure to water the sod as less required as possible.
Know Your Sprinkler System
If you know how to use your sprinkler system efficiently, half the job of avoiding sod overwatering is done. Invest in a technologically advanced sprinkler system that comes equipped with rain sensors which turns system off during a rainstorm. Fine-tuning your sprinkler system and knowing in details how it functions is extremely beneficial, cost-effective and fruitful in the long-run.
Now, even if you committed the mistake of sod overwatering, no need to worry as you can conveniently manage to do overwatered sod recover.
De-thatching is a the process that breaks up the dense thatch growing near the bases of your grass plants, enabling access to the soil for sufficient water and air and preventing the growth of fungi and pests. Before using fungicides or insecticides, you should definitely give de-thatching a shot.
Aeration is the process of exposing the sod to air for purification by employing a power core or a manual aerator which encourages grass to grow more healthily. It further allows the overwatered sod recover by breaking up compacted soil and permitting the oxygen back into the ground.
Also, you can fertilize your sod with a nitrogen-rich fertilizer after decreasing the amount of so that nitrogen returns back to the soil and heals your grass to undergo overwatered sod recover.
“Where the grass is greener, the water bill is bigger.”
– Rick Warren