SYMPTOMS OF UNDER WATERING A LAWN

Proper lawn watering is the most important aspect of organic tree and lawn care, yet lawn watering is the biggest frustration that homeowners face.

99% of lawn care problems are watering related. Improper watering causes lawn funguses, kills beneficial microbial activity, kills soils and causes shallow growing grass roots. These common lawn care problems are all caused by improper watering techniques and many lawns problems are caused by either under watering, over watering, too frequent of watering, and / or poor sprinkler coverage. Sometimes a single lawn will have sections that are over watered and other sections that are under watered.

All the lawn watering problems can be fixed by closely following the lawn watering technique called 1, 2, 3, 2, 1 lawn watering. Organo-Lawn invented this lawn watering technique specifically for lawn in Boulder and Fort Collins Colorado, but this technique is universal worldwide.



Symptoms of Under Watering a Lawn:

Signs of an under watered lawn include the presence of the heat and stress fungus called ascochyta leaf blight, the yellowing of turf, and footprints remain visible for a few minutes after a lawn has been walked on. Another major issue if a lawn is watered too infrequently and no moisture is in the soil is the beneficial microbes will die. Microbes require the soil to be moist but not wet to stay alive and be healthy. Properly watered lawns have moist soil and moisture creates a living soil, which means it is teeming with beneficial microbial activity that is vital to maintaining a healthy lawn.


Why Daily Lawn Watering is a Bad Practice:

Our technicians often see lawns in Boulder and the Fort Collins areas struggling with poor color and more often than not we discover that the lawn is being watered every day of the week. Daily lawn watering is a major problem because it causes short root systems, flushes nutrients from the soil, and it kills microbial activity. Daily lawn watering is even more damaging to the health of the trees, compromising tree's root systems and and causing major damage to the overall health of the tree.

Daily lawn watering is a bad practice because it replaces air in the soil and kills beneficial microbes in the soil. Also, when a lawn is watered daily, the roots of the grass will only grow a few inches into the soil because they are learning that they don't need to dig deep for water. These short roots struggle when it is hot and they will not be able to tolerate heat and drought stress and the end result will be poor resistance to ascochyta leaf blight and a poorly colored turf.



Lawn Watering Tips for Clay Soil

This Boulder lawn has brown spots are caused by poor sprinkler coverage.

Lawn Watering Tips for Clay Soil - Fort Collins

This Fort Collins lawn is suffering from Ascochyta or Dollar Spot Fungus which is
caused by frequent short lawn watering.


How Much To Water Your Colorado Lawn Per Week, To Keep it Green

Full Sun (South Facing Aspects)

When Daytime Temps are Greater than 85 degrees F
2.1 inches of water per week
(7/10th of an inch of water 3 times a week)


When Daytime Temps are Between 70-85 degrees F
1.4 inches per week
(7/10th of an inch of water 2 times a week)


When Daytime Temps are Less than 70 degrees F
.7 inches of water per week
(7/10th of an inch of water 1 time a week)

Normal Facing (East / West Facing)

When Daytime Temps are Greater than 85 degrees F
1.5 inches of water per week
(1/2 of an inch of water 3 times a week)


When Daytime Temps are Between 70-85 degrees F
1 inch per week
(1/2 of an inch of water 2 times a week)


When Daytime Temps are Less than 70 degrees F
.5 inches of water per week
(1/2 of an inch of water 1 time a week)

Full Shade (North Facing or Full Shade)

When Daytime Temps are Greater than 85 degrees F
1 inch of water per week
(1/3 of an inch of water 3 times a week)


When Daytime Temps are Between 70-85 degrees F
.66 inches per week
(1/3 of an inch of water 2 times a week)


When Daytime Temps are Less than 70 degrees F
.33 inches of water per week
(1/3 of an inch of water 1 time a week)


This Is What a Properly Watered Lawn Can Look Like

Lawn Watering Tips for Clay Soil - Boulder

This Boulder lawn is how an Organo-Lawn full season program lawn will look when it is watered properly.


FAQ - Under Watering a Lawn

What are lawn watering tips for clay soil?

  • Proper lawn watering using the 1, 2, 3, 2, 1 lawn watering technique will help prevent soil compaction. The best way to improve a clay soil is to create a living soil. A living soil means it is teeming with beneficial microbial activity. Some organic lawn care products that stimulate a living soil include Humate soil conditioner. Humate is scientifically proven to stimulate microbial activity in the soil. Lawn aeration is also an important lawn care service that will help break up the heavy clay content of soils.

How long to program a sprinkler system?

  • Every sprinkler system is different and every zone on an irrigation system is different too. The best way to get an accurate measurement of a sprinkler system is to use a rain gauge or a flat-bottomed flat-sided container. A lawn will need different amounts of water depending on how much sun the lawn zone receives. A south facing aspect in full sun will require .6”-.7” of water, a normal facing aspect with partial sun will require .5”-.6” of water, and a north facing aspect in full shade will require .4”-.5” of water per watering.

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