Water Smart: How much to Water?

Date posted:

As we all know, Oklahoma weather is, for lack of a better word, crazy. One week is monsoon weather, the next week is a desert. Figuring out when and how much to water can get a little frustrating. But when you have an irrigation system it is your responsibility to know when to water, how much to water, and how often to water. Over watering in Oklahoma City can be more detrimental than under watering. Over watering will cause root rot in your prized trees and promote disease all your landscape plants. Our tree department removes more trees due to over watering than any other issue, drought included.

Over Watered Yard

A few signs that your may be overwatering your yard are:

1.) A mushy/soggy feeling when you walk on it.

2.) Mushrooms and algae begin to grow in your yard.

3.) Grass begins to turn a light green or yellow.

4.) Crabgrass, Nutsedge and other water loving weeds begin to spread.

5.) Irregular bare patches appear as insects begin feeding on your grass.

6.) Puddles begin to form due to soil reaching capacity

Dry Yard

Signs that your yard is thirsty:

1.)You leave footprints as you walk. Grass loses its ability to pop back up once it needs water.

2.) Your soil is hard, possibly showing cracks.

3.)The grass blades begin to wilt, almost appearing to lay down.



    Dont fret though! Its an easy fix! Just adjust your watering schedule. If you are familiar with your irrigation controller, great, go adjust your watering schedule now. Or if your water controller is about as familiar as some distant foreign language, contact us and we would love to come do it for you.

     Okay great, but when should you water is probably your next question. Great question, I'm glad you asked! Water in the early morning between 4 am and 8 am. Otherwise, you can waste up to 65% of your water because it evaporates in the heat of the day before your grass can absorb it. Don’t water at night. A wet lawn that sits all night is prone to root rot as well as fungus and other infections.

     How long should a yard be watered? Unfortunately this isn't a one size fits all answer, but as a general rule, water deeper, less frequently. The right answer obviously has a bunch of annoying variables that ruin the hope of simplicity. Most grasses require watering until the soil is moist 8-12 inches in depth. Usually 1 inch of water will penetrate a loamy soil 6 -8 inches. If you have clay soil you’ll need to water more because 1 inch of water only penetrates about 4 inches in clay. However, a sandy soil can survive on the same amount of water, just will need to be divided up in smaller sections. If you contact us we would love to come out to your property and eliminate the guess work, customizing your watering schedule based on soil type, plants, and sun exposure.

     The last little tidbit about watering is probably the most common sense, but also a pretty prolific problem. Don't water in the rain. Yea, its obvious, but I am always amazed at the amount of yards I see with sprinklers running full bore during a downpour. I understand we can't all be home when it starts raining to turn off the sprinklers, not to mention not many of us would think about it anyway, but there is an easy fix luckily. Let us install a rain sensor for you. They are affordable and basically run themselves. They can help save our precious water and save your precious money by turning your system off when it rains.

Rainbird Rain Sensor