Water Right

William Afton, Batty, Jr., James  |  6/28/2011 8:51:58 PM

Dry weather has been common in spring and early summer. Our plants and lawns are struggling, the ponds are lowered and the water bill is rising.

Watering the landscape has become a daily chore. But watering properly requires more than just standing outside with your garden hose.

Right ways to water your landscape:

  • Water as needed. In our current conditions (high temperature, full sun, and high humidity) a daily dose of water is a big help to the plants and lawn. Keep in mind though; you want moist areas, not soggy wet soil.
  • Water deeply. Allow water time to penetrate the ground to about 6 inches. Remember deep roots equal longer shoots. 
  • Water early. The best time to water is in the morning. Sunlight helps the plant foliage to dry. There is less loss due to evaporation. The morning watering allows the plant to have moisture when it needs it most, during the heat of the day. 
Using a sprinkler for irrigation is a common way to water. Either a hose end sprinkler or underground system can adequately serve your needs. To figure out how long to leave your sprinkler on to apply one inch of water, place empty cans within the spray pattern. Start your sprinkler, mark the time started.

After your container has one inch of water, check your time again. That’s how long it takes your sprinkler to apply an inch of water. Applying an inch of water to a medium textured soil should be enough to penetrate the soil about six inches. 

The best way to check how thoroughly an area has been watered is to check the soil 15 minutes after watering. Keep the soil moist and your plants can survive our hot, dry conditions.
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