Conventional thinking is that because ET (evapo-transpiration) rates are low and the turf isn‘t growing much, it is OK to stop watering. Too much water can lead to rot and actually prevent root growth. To prevent snow mold, remove the snow from the grassy areas and avoid large piles in the grass. So in order to give your grass a fighting chance of survival, it needs to be of the cool-season variety. However, watering too deeply, such as running the sprinkler all night long, also makes grass vulnerable to disease and fungal infections. Kentucky bluegrass lawns may require 2.5 inches of water or more per week during the heat of summer. While your new lawn needs plenty of water, it is possible to overdo it. When Watering a Warm-Season Grass Type, Keep These Tips in Mind: Zoysia, St. Augustine, bermuda and centipede grasses develop deep root systems, making them better able to withstand drought. During these months, you should water 1-2 times per month. Even in winter, it’s best to leave our grass tall. Using the scheduling features on an irrigation controller, add multiple start times and reduce each zone’s watering time. Lawns thrive on regular watering and the sooner it starts getting watered in the spring, the sooner it … 5 Things to do NOW if you’re Planning on Selling Your Home, Support Homeownership on Colorado Gives Day. As you can see from one of the leading turf experts in not only the State of Colorado, but the entire United States, ignoring lawns in the fall is one of the worst things for grass health. There should be no water spraying on the asphalt or pooling in gutters or streets. At what temperature does grass stop growing, and how warm does it have to be outside for the grass to “wake up” in the spring and begin growing again? Finally, fall watering of lawns that were damaged by winter mites (clover mites, Banks grass mites) is essential for discouraging mite activity this upcoming winter and reducing potential mite problems.”. Watering until the ground freezes allows the plant roots to absorb water and hold that water throughout the winter. 5)  Aerate: If you have a yard with high traffic, fall is a good time to aerate to relieve the soil compaction. I've got a large lot, so I'm excited to stop watering and watch my water bills drop from $400 in the summer to $30 in the winter. You don’t need to go overboard to ensure that your … The watering objective is to thoroughly moisten, not saturate, the entire root layer beneath the grass blades. 4)  Weed:  Fall is the time to get rid of weeds. Watering too often can cause plants to have shallow roots that can lead to disease, browning, and grass death. The majority of Colorado yards have cool-season grass lawns, including Kentucky bluegrass, tall fescue and perennial rye. A final application of fertilizer appropriately timed, can also protect your grass from snow mold. It’s easy to tell when grass needs water; either the grass will turn a gray-green or … These include succulents, cacti, blue grama grass, and buffalo grass. There is little precipitation and very little moisture in the soil. No such grass exists, despite come-on ads in magazines and Sunday newspaper supplements. So I … 1. During Fall when can watering of the shrubs and garden plants stop? The herbicide is more easily absorbed and moved to weed roots resulting in better control. The problem is, fall is a key time for lawn heath; ignoring it puts your grass at risk not only for the winter months but also for the following spring. The majority of lawns need around one inch of water each week. Plants in your yard will become damaged if there isn’t a supplemental water source from October through March. Your grass will be healthiest if you completely wet the root zone each time you water. 3)  Fertilize: Unless you are using a slow release fertilizer that feeds the yard over the entire summer, get a fall fertilization. Watering in increments gives soil time to soak up the necessary water and allow water to travel further into the soil where the grass roots are, creating a healthier lawn. Dry conditions and fluctuating temperatures causes lawns, shrubs, and trees to become distressed. Some people may stop watering on the day it rains, but if there has been significant rain it may be enough to stop watering for several days. One way is to not ignore your yard in the winter; even in the winter, you still need to care for your yard. Keep an eye on rainfall totals and remember that most lawns only need 3/4 inch to 1 inch or water per week. The summer is over, the grass is not growing as fast, and we have longer and cooler nights. “Lawn watering is often stopped in early fall. Cutting off too much of the blade puts the yard under a great deal of extra stress. When watering grass seedlings, gradually increase your morning watering sessions over time, while decreasing your evening watering. Be sure to water in fall fertilizer applications, often considered the most important application of the year. You should apply about 0.75” (¾ inch) of water each time you irrigate to wet your lawn’s root zone. Provide Your Lawn with Right Amount of Water. Wait an hour, then start watering again. After making sure these are watered, then focus on the rest of the shrubs, flowers, ground covers, and ornamental grasses. As we enter fall, many people back off on lawn care. We are thinking about getting kids to school, and even breaking out the skiing equipment to ready it for the snows which are only a couple of short months away. How long you should water depends upon two factors: 1. Dear Jerri, All perennials, shrubs and trees should be watered regularly until the ground freezes. In the heat of summer, the grass needs at least 1 to 2 inches each week to thrive. Even with all the snow, your trees get very little water from it. During those summer months, water restrictions come into effect in the Denver area. However, historic ET and rainfall data for most of Colorado shows a need of 0.5 to 0.75 inch of irrigation per week during September and October. Water everything in your yard that was planted during the last growing season. Water the lawn when the air temperature is above 40 degrees, as long as the soil isn’t frozen. The best time of day to irrigate is between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. 5. When mowing never remove more than ⅓ of the grass blade. If it’s a relatively dry winter, most likely it won’t extend too long into the spring. After you’ve turned off your sprinkler system, continue to water your grass. Soil preparation is critical to the rooting depth and drought tolerance of turf. One of the most important considerations when caring for grass is water. Water at mid-day if possible so the water has time to soak into the ground and doesn’t freeze. The best test is to stick a spade down a few inches to see if there’s any moisture. During these months, you should water 1-2 times per month. The rule of thumb is one inch of water a week. Root damage can occur when homeowners do not water their lawns, shrubs, trees, and perennials during a Colorado winter. Eventually, you’ll want to water between 6 and 10 am, while the weather is still cool. Intermountain Grass and Legume Forage Production Manual – This manual has in-depth research based information that you can use to improve your management of grass or alfalfa dominated pastures and hayfields. You may be wondering if you should be watering your yard. In the winter, Bermuda-grass lawns go dormant and need no supplemental watering. Conventional thinking is that because ET (evapo-transpiration) rates are low and the turf isn‘t growing much, it is OK to stop watering. If the plants are affected during the long dry periods, they will still look perfectly normal when spring arrives. Winter conditions in Colorado can lead to snow mold. Fertilizer applied to dry turf is less likely to enhance fall rooting and increase energy storage. New yards, both seed and sod, and lawns exposed to the south or west are especially susceptible. Turfgrasses form tillers (side shoots) and rhizomes that increase the density of fall turf. Hence the best time to start watering the lawn in the spring is as early as possible. That means the winters are dry. Fall herbicide applications are more effective when applied to healthy, green, actively growing weeds. Heavy clay soil holds water much longer than sandy soil. But with unpredictable Colorado weather, keeping your lawn healthy year round is often easier said than done. If the water freezes, solid ice could suffocate your lawn and leave it matted. Mow the grass and apply fertilizer after the grass has stopped growing, about six weeks before it goes dormant. ... are water or irrigation … Grasses and Grass like plants (from USU) – A great resource to help identify the species of grasses on your land. Thank you. However, historic ET and rainfall data for most of Colorado shows a need of 0.5 to 0.75 inch of irrigation per week during September and October. Taking care of your lawn during the winter can help ensure a healthy yard next summer. Any leaking hoses or sprinkler systems must be repaired within 10 days. Even better, it features advice from Colorado’s most experienced real estate agents. Your lawn care should include watering and fertilizing like other seasons, even in winter. Ashton Michaels is an outdoor living expert, explorer, and regional marketing representative for LawnStarter Denver. REcolorado’s Home Blog features helpful articles, tips, community information, and more. The recent weather in Colorado Springs makes it seem that spring has arrived. Spring is the trickiest season to aerate your lawn in Colorado because it depends on the winter we’ve had. This is an important time for turf to “heal” after a stressful summer, especially if it has been worn down by traffic or suffered from disease or insect problems. 2. Should you be watering trees in winter in Colorado? If you are not sure how long you should water, mark some plastic containers an inch above the bottom and place them in different parts of the watering zone. Water not only quenches the grass's thirst, it also provides it with nearly all the essential nutrients that are dissolved in it. Destroying them now, all the way down to the root level, means fewer weeds next year. In Colorado, Kentucky bluegrass, tall fescue, and perennial ryegrass lawns must receive supplemental irrigation to survive. Nothing fills a homeowner with pride quite like a lush, green lawn. From May 1 to Oct. 1, Denver Water allows lawn watering three days a week, and not between the hours of 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. Winter watering can help keep your lawn, shrubs, and trees healthy enough to make it through the winter months. It’s only when the temperatures start to rise in late spring or summer that the plants show distress. In Colorado, this period typically runs from November through April. Jerri. 2) Mow: Continue to mow as the yard needs it and keep grass length to about 2½ to 3 inches. Snow mold occurs in areas where snow has been piled up and along the north side of buildings and along driveways. Consider what Dr. Tony Koski, Turf Specialist at Colorado State University, say about watering lawns in the fall: “Lawn watering is often stopped in early fall. First, start watering and see how long it takes to get runoff. Some people would like to believe in the existence of a lawn grass that requires NO maintenance — no water, no mowing, no fertilizer. Water is vital in the winter months when there is not adequate rainfall. How long should I water ? Take care of your yard now to make sure all the plants are happy and healthy next summer. The damage isn’t obvious right away. Grass trying to grow in highly compacted soil cannot recover properly. Watering your grass during these periods will essentially be the same as doing it in the summer. Plants will grow using the food energy which was already stored. Fall watering is essential for late season nitrogen applications to work most effectively. While mowing isn‘t needed as frequently during fall, the turf DOES continue to grow – but in ways that differ from spring and summer. As conditions can vary across the country, follow these general rules for when to stop watering plants in fall weather: Continue to provide supplemental moisture as needed until the ground is frozen. As long as the sprinkler system’s heads are adjusted properly, all the lawn watering problems can be fixed by following the lawn watering technique invented by Organo-Lawn called 1-2-3-2-1 Lawn Watering . 3. A thick, green lawn in Colorado requires proper mowing and timely applications of water and fertilizer. If you overseed with ryegrass in winter, water every 3 to 7 days after it is established. As always the Lawn Care department at Mountain High is here to help keep your turf healthy. This will promote growth at a time when the lawn is trying to recover from the summer and build a good base for the following year. In Colorado, this period typically runs from November through April. 2. 4. I live in Littleton and stopped watering after the snowstorm a couple of weeks ago and my lawn is still green. Fungal diseases may take hold if your lawn is overwatered. Root health affects the well being of the entire plant. We’re talking 0.5” of water for every 12” of snow. You do not need to winter water any dormant plants and grasses. Mow the grass and apply fertilizer after the grass has stopped growing, about six weeks before it goes dormant. Native plants are acclimatized to Colorado weather, and therefore will naturally dry out in the winter. In the winter, the air is dry. If you cut your lawn severely last fall or mow it in winter so that top growth is very short, it will dry out faster. Weakened plants are unable to fight disease and insect damage. Common signs include grass that is bluish-green, grass blades that curl and footprints that stay noticeable on the grass. If your lawn appears to be holding water, or if you’re seeing evidence of puddles in your lawn, you need to stop watering and give it time to dry out. Ashton Michaels, Lawnstarter, offers advice for Colorado homeowners to care for their lawn through cold, dry, and icy winters. How-to Winter Water. How quickly your sprinklers put water on your lawn. Water for winter thirst. So, how do you winter water grass? How can you prevent your lawn from being winter-killed in Colorado? Fall is the best time of year to control perennial broadleaf weeds – dandelion, clover, bindweed, plantain, and thistle, to name a few. If you get runoff again before you get ¾ of an inch in your cups, stop watering and write the second length of watering time down. After you’ve turned off your sprinkler system, continue to water your grass. If the grass, plants, trees, or bushes haven’t been through their first winter yet, then they need to be watered this winter. If you live in Colorado, you know trees need special care. The best advice for lawn watering is to give the grass about a half an inch of water twice a week. When to water. The weeds that hardened off during the heat of summer are opening up more and are easier to kill. Most lawn watering problems that we see in Boulder and Fort Collins area lawns are either over watering or poor sprinkler coverage. Never hesitate to contact us at 303.232.0666 send us an estimate request below to get on one of our fine lawn care programs: Mountain High / SavATree Helps: Our Charity. You’ll also want to water anything that’s exposed to the wind or lots of sun. Lawns are especially prone to damage during the Colorado winter months. Compacted soil prevents moisture and nutrients from getting to the roots and prevents the roots from breathing. Established large trees have a root spread equal to or greater than the height of the tree. When to Stop Watering the Lawn in Fall You should not completely stop watering your lawn in the fall until the ground freezes. To prevent turf damage to your grass, watering is the best treatment. Therefore, you need a grass that is pretty resistant to drought. Our Final Thoughts on Watering Your Lawn in the Fall If you find that you are having trouble with watering your lawn sufficiently throughout the autumn months, consider contacting a trusted, local landscaping company to assist you in the process. To accomplish this, grass should be watered to a depth of 6 to 10 inches. In general, warm-season grass types require less water than cool-season grasses. If your area receives one inch or more of precipitation per week you don't need to water. Meaning, you are probably safe to aerate your lawn after a couple of weeks of sunny weather. Stop watering and write the length of watering time down. Apply water to the most critical part of the root zone within the dripline. 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