TURF MAINTENANCE

WATERING TIPS FOR NEWLY LAID TURF:

* It is essential to begin watering new turfgrass sod within a half hour after it is laid on the soil. Apply at least 1 in. (25cm) of water so that the soil beneath the turf is very wet. Ideally, the soil 3 to 4 in. (7 to 10 cm) below the surface will be moist.

* Pull back a corner of the turf and push a screwdriver or other sharp tool into the soil. It should push in easily and have moisture along the first 3 or 4 in. (7 to 10 cm), or you need to apply more water.

* Make absolutely certain that water is getting to all areas of your new lawn, regardless of the type of sprinkling system you use. Corners and edges are easily missed by many sprinklers and are particularly vulnerable to drying out faster than the center portion of your new lawn. Also, areas near buildings drying out faster because of reflected heat and may require more water.

* For the next two weeks (or until the turf is well rooted), keep the below turf soil surface moist with daily (or more frequent) watering of approximately one-quarter inch (0.6 cm) each. Especially hot, dry or windy periods will necessitate increased watering amounts and frequency.

* Water as early in the morning as possible to take advantage of the daily start of the grass’s normal growing cycle, usually lower wind speeds and considerably less loss of water because of high temperature evaporation.

* If the temperature approached 100° F (37° C), or if high winds are constant for more than half of the day, reduce the temperature of the turf surface by lightly sprinkling the area. This sprinkling does not replace the need for longer, deeper watering, which will become even more critical to continue during adverse weather conditions.
WATERING TIPS FOR ESTABLISHED SOD:

* During the remainder of the growing season, most lawns will do very well with a maximum total of one inch of water a week, coming either from rain or applied water. Soil conditions may dictate that the amount be applied in two settings, approximately two or three days apart. This amount of water, properly applied, is all that is required for the health of the grass, providing it is applied evenly and saturates the underlying soil to a depth of 4 to 6 in. (10 to 15 cm).

* Infrequent and deep watering is prefered to frequent and shallow watering because the roots will only grow as deeply as their most frequently available water supply. Deeply rooted grass has a larger “soil-water bank” to draw moisture from and this will help the grass survive drought and hot weather that rapidly dries out the upper soil layer.

 

MOWING TIPS

* Mow often, generally removing no more than 1/3 of the grass height at a mowing. Keep your mower blade sharp.