For many Australians, summer is the season when you can really make the most of your backyard, be it a game of outdoor cricket, or simply feeling the soft green carpet of grass tickle between your toes.
Water long and water consistently is the best advice for a lush green lawn. However, watering regularly doesn’t necessarily mean every day. In fact, the ideal scenario is a decent soak once a week, which allows the water to get down deep into the soil. This means roots tend to extend deeper into the soil as they seek out moisture. On top of that, water remains in the ground for longer at a deeper level, which aids against evaporation.
Watering every day is bad lawn-care practice. Not only does it produce a shallow root system that becomes dependent on daily watering, the roots can dry out quickly producing shock in – or even sudden death of – grass due to heat stress.
Watering lawns daily also means water sits close to the surface of the grass. On hot days, a lot of water will be lost due to evaporation, increasing the risk of heat stress damage. Of course, there are always exceptions – in this case, a newly seeded lawn should be watered every day for five to 10 minutes to dampen the seeds.
Different seasons do require different watering patterns – this can be generalised as frequent watering now during summer, little water in winter, and regular watering in spring and autumn.
When it comes down to it, the easiest way to know when to water lawns is when the lawn leaf begins to wilt and slightly discolour. Best practice is to let the lawn tell you when it’s time for a drink.