Best Tips On Watering Your Grass In The Texas Winter
Whether you think it’s a good idea or not to water your grass in the Texas winter, the leaves will fall off your trees and the grass will die. It happens every year and this year is no different. Not to mention Christmas decorations — yes we Texans have those — will be coming out of storage and dusting themselves off for another round.
Because the holidays are just around the corner, I want to take some time on this topic to give you all the best tips on how much water grass should receive during the winter watering months in Central Texas.
A new study has found that the right amount of water can help reduce the number of brown patches in your yard and, as a bonus, save you some money on your water bill.
The study was conducted by researchers at Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and found that lawns only need about one-third of the water they need during the summer months. Yes, you read that correctly. One-third!
“Water is still necessary for a healthy beautiful lawn, but less is needed,” said Dr. Hongying “Henry” Wang, a turf-grass specialist with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in Dallas County and one of the study’s authors. “The key is to apply it at the right time and in the right amount.”
Now, how much is the right amount?
It’s about 0.08 inches a week for most lawns in Central Texas. You can use a rain gauge or a sprinkler to measure this.
It might seem like a small difference from the one-half inch per week recommended in the summer months, but when you’re using up to two inches of water every time you water your grass, that’s a lot of wasted water. By cutting back just 30 percent on your watering regimen during wintertime, that will add up over what you could have saved if the gardeners in the area follow suit and cut back too! Doing so would also help reduce runoff and lower levels of nutrients going into waterways after heavy rains.
Speaking of runoff and reducing nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus, in waterways, the winter lawn care that receive less water will also have lower levels of those nutrients.
When you reduce irrigation systems during the cold season the nutrient is not leached out of soils. Nitrogen loss is increased with increased irrigation so if we can cut back on watering there will be less nutrient pollution. Irrigation systems efficiency is another way to reduce water use.
Winter lawn care tips:
-Reduce your watering in the winter to about one-third what you would normally need during summer.
-Early morning is the best time to water, but if that isn’t possible, try evening irrigation.
-Mulch your lawn with organic materials for moisture retention and weed control.
When the temperatures drop down in the hard winter months, make sure you never let your grass get too dry. Watering is a great way to keep a healthy lawn!
Freeze sensors are a great way to make sure your irrigation system only waters when it is needed. You can also install a rain shut-off device on your existing sprinkler system.
Both devices will help you save water, and in turn, money, during the winter months.
So what happens to your lawn if you don’t follow this advice?
Well, it may take longer for green grass to blanket the landscape but it will happen. However, once winter ends spring rains will wash away all traces of what you think should still be there because that’s just how Texas weather rolls. We won’t know until May whether your lawn was successful or not.
In conclusion, follow this advice and you’ll be able to save money on your water bill, reduce runoff and help lower the levels of nutrients going into waterways. Your lawn may not be as green as you would like it to be during winter, but it will eventually turn green again with a little bit of patience.
I hope this post was helpful and sheds some light on how much should you should be watering the grass in the Texas winter. If you require further assistance, then feel free to contact Grass Works Austin Lawn Care to schedule your free consultation at (512) 797-1640 to learn more about our services or request an appointment online via the form below.
You may also enjoy reading: Time for Tree Trimming: 3 Reasons to Prune Your Trees this Winter.