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It’s winter.... why should I water?

Whether your yard sports grass that's green in the summer, winter or all year, lawn water needs are a year-round issue. Water helps protect the lawn, but knowing the right time and amount of water is key to keeping it alive so it stays lush and green when warmer weather arrives. Watering your grass, even in colder weather, is often overlooked but necessary.

Why does grass need water in the winter?

Even if your grass is dormant, the roots still use water to stay hydrated during the cold months. We are no strangers to drought in the Texas panhandle. Extended dry periods especially in the winter, can cause the roots to dry up and sometimes die. The grass might appear normal above the ground, but it could be weakened enough to die when stressed by warmer weather or disease. Scarce winter rain and snow in our area are usually not sufficient to keep your grass healthy, requiring you to water it periodically.

Freeze Protection

Watering the grass just before low temperatures hit can help protect it from frost damage. The water strengthens the grass, enabling it to fight the damage potentially caused by cold weather. Also, water releases heat more slowly than plant tissues, helping the blades retain heat longer than if they were dehydrated. Watering a day or two before the cold temperatures arrive will give the moisture time to soak into the roots.

When To Water

Watering in the morning is key to the health of your grass. When you water at night, the moisture doesn't have time to soak in well before temperatures fall for the evening. It doesn't evaporate well at night, meaning it stays on the blades longer, encouraging fungal growth. Watering in the morning gives the roots more time to absorb water while allowing some evaporation to clean off the blades.

How much water?

Your lawn doesn't need as much water in the winter as in the summer. In the heat of summer, the grass needs at least 1 to 2 inches each week to thrive. Cold weather calls for about 1/2 inch on most lawns -- not as much is lost to evaporation, so even cold-season grasses don't need as much. If your grass is vigorously growing, you might need a bit more, such as 1 inch per week. Rain might supply some of this need, but water it yourself when necessary to make up the difference.

As always, Artisan Sprinkler Service is always available if you need a professional to inspect or repair your sprinkler system. If you find yourself in need of a licensed irrigator in the Amarillo area give us a call or contact us from our website

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