After working hard to get your lawn to grow successfully, you want to make sure you are doing everything in your power to make sure it stays healthy.
To have a healthy lawn, you need to make sure it’s receiving enough sunlight, fertilization, and water. Although all of these things are important, water is perhaps one of the most vital nutrients your grass needs to stay alive. That’s why it’s so important to make sure it stays hydrated.
But if you don’t have an irrigation system, how can you make sure it’s getting enough water?
Irrigation System Alternatives
Many people choose irrigation systems because they are convenient and require less work than doing it any other way. However, irrigation systems can be expensive and a pain to install. So the question remains – how to water your lawn without an irrigation system?
Lawn irrigation system alternatives include watering your lawn manually with a hose, or by simply letting mother nature take care of it.
Why You May Not Want to Use an Irrigation System?
Using a sprinkler can certainly be more convenient than doing it yourself. However, there are some disadvantages to going that route.
For one, it can be extremely expensive to use a sprinkler or irrigation system. If you’ve got a large property, chances are you are going to be using a lot of water on your lawn. Depending on how often you water it, you can expect your water bill to be pretty hefty.
Can Be Hard to Install
Aside from cost, installing an irrigation system is not easy. It requires a lot of time and energy, and you would probably have to hire a professional to do it.
Not only will you have to pay someone to do it, but chances are it will take several weeks to install. As a result, you will be forbidden from using your lawn until the work is done.
Even when you do hire a professional to get the job done, you can’t always be sure that it will be done correctly. If your sprinkler system isn’t installed correctly, it could easily be ruined by the weather. All it would take is a windy day or an abundance of rainfall to ruin your sprinkler system.
If your sprinkler system does get ruined, it’ll cost you a pretty penny to get it fixed.
Manual Methods of Watering
Using a watering can and a hose can be just as effective, especially for smaller lawns.
Using a Watering Can and a Hose
If you’ve decided to go the manual way, all you will need is a watering can. This option is best for people with smaller lawns or who are just starting out growing their grass. Granted, we don’t recommend doing this if you’ve got acres worth of grass, but for a smaller area of grass, this is a good option.
It’s safe to say that if you’ve got a garden or a lawn, you’ve also got a hose. Using a hose is much easier than relying on a watering can. In this case, what you would need to do is purchase a hose attachment that will allow you to control the water.
These attachments come in several different shapes and sizes depending on your needs. They are a more cost-effective alternative to a regular sprinkler system and are simple to attach to your hose.
Speaking of attachments, you can also purchase attachments that attach to your lawnmower or that make it easy to water your lawn while you mow.
If you happen to live in a place where it rains often, you may be better off just letting mother nature take care of it. Why waste water when you can get it for free from the sky?
The best thing about letting the rain water your lawn is that it won’t miss any spots. When you water your lawn yourself, you may miss a few areas. But with rainfall, that’s virtually impossible.
Things to Keep in Mind Before Watering Your Lawn
Not all grass is created equal. As a result, every type of grass needs different amounts of water. Before you start watering your lawn, be sure to find out what type of grass you have.
How Much Water Does Your Lawn Need?
Most grass requires at least one inch of water per week to survive. During a drought or a particularly warmer than usual season, however, you may want to consider watering your lawn more often.
The type of soil in which your lawn is planted in is also another thing to take into consideration when watering your lawn. If your soil is on the sandier side, water will run through it much quicker. If your soil has clay in it, however, it will take longer. If you want to test out this system yourself, all you have to do is take a screwdriver and insert it right into your lawn.
If the screwdriver can penetrate the soil fairly easy, it means you are watering your grass enough. On the other hand, if it doesn’t and the soil is too dry and hard, it obviously means you aren’t keeping your lawn moist enough.
If you don’t have a screwdriver, you can always use a shovel to dig up some dirt or lift up the sod to check out the status of your grass. Of course, this will be much messier.
The Best Time to Water Your Lawn
The best time to water your lawn is anywhere between 4 and 10 am. This is because it allows the water more time to sink in before the sun comes out to evaporate it.
Making Your Own Watering System
Before you decide to spend all your savings on a sprinkler system, it wouldn’t hurt to try making one on your own. One of the most cost-effective things you can get is a hose faucet timer. This device easily attaches to your hose and has a battery-powered electronic timer. This way, you can set the time for when you want your lawn to be watered and for how long.
The device is quite easy to install and won’t cost you as much as other sprinkler systems normally would.
How to Get Better Results From Watering Your Lawn
Another aspect of keeping your grass healthy is keeping your grass mowed to an appropriate length. The longer your grass is, the more difficult it is for water to soak into the soil.
As a result, you may be overwatering your lawn. The best way to make sure your lawn is getting the amount of water it needs is by cutting it down to two inches. Although grass clippings aren’t always useful, when it comes to keeping your lawn hydrated, they can be. This is because they will block the sun from your lawn, meaning it won’t soak up the moisture as quickly.
What Will Happen When You Don’t Water Your Lawn Enough?
Many people try to get away with not watering their lawn as often as they should. Most of the time, this doesn’t end well for them.
When you don’t water your lawn enough, there are a few things that could happen. For one, weeds will eventually start to take over. Next, insects or backyard animals may start to feed on your lawn, causing it to grow in patches. Finally, if you aren’t watering your lawn enough, it will absolutely die out.
Many people may not know what signs to look out for when it comes to a dehydrated or dying lawn. However, the signs can be pretty telling.
The first thing you’ll notice is that your lawn will start to turn a different color. It may go from green, to yellow, to brown. Eventually, it will turn into a hay-like substance that indicates it’s dead.
Even if you try to water your lawn long after it’s dried out, it won’t make much of a difference. At this point, your best bet is to reseed your lawn.
How to Revive Your Grass
If you’ve let your grass go far too long without receiving the nutrients that it needs to survive, there isn’t much hope for its revival. But before you lose hope, rest assured that there are a few things you can do to get your lawn to look brand new once again.
The first thing you want to do is aerate your soil. This means turning it over to make sure it gets enough oxygen. Next, you are going to want to reseed.
Keep in mind that if you decide to reseed your lawn, you are going to need to do some proper research first. Make sure you are choosing a grass seed that grows best in your particular climate. Once you’ve chosen the proper seeds, be aware of the proper seasons to plant them in.
If you know that your grass grows better in the summer, be sure to seed your grass in the early fall. But if your grass grows best in cooler weather, late spring would be the best time to seed.
Things to Keep in Mind if You Do End up Installing a Sprinkler System
If you do end up buying your own sprinkler, however, make sure that the ratio of water that is coming out of it is akin to the amount that your lawn needs. If not, you may need to adjust it. As we’ve learned earlier, too much water can drown your grass, while not enough can dehydrate it.
Be sure to adjust not just the amount of water that is coming out of your sprinkler, but also the way your sprinkler runs. Lawn experts suggest that you use a sprinkler that pulsates as opposed to one that oscillates.
This is because pulsating sprinklers disburse water at a high velocity to the point that it can avoid wind and other climate conditions.
You can always purchase a pulsating sprinkler attachment for your hose if you don’t want to spend the money on a sprinkler system.
If you have recently reseeded your lawn and it is just now starting to grow, you may want to be even more careful about watering it.
Too much water can easily wash away the seeds you have planted, so oscillating sprinklers may be the best option in this case.
Oscillating sprinklers are better in this case because they don’t have too much pressure and they aren’t pushing away the new seeds. When it comes to new grass, you also want to make sure the top layer is getting enough water, but not to the point where the grass is getting too soggy.
For mature grass, you should still only water it twice a week, unless there is a drought going on. Unlike the other plants in your garden, your grass does not need that much water. In fact, if you water your grass too often, it can end up growing fungus or bacteria that will be the end of your grass.
Twice a week is more than enough to keep it hydrated and healthy.
Finally, you want to make sure you are allowing the water to soak into the soil. If not, you risk drowning the lawn.
Keeping your grass healthy takes a lot of dedication and commitment. If you aren’t ready to install an irrigation system, there are certainly ways for you to keep your grass watered. If you have a hose, you can always get an attachment for it.
If your lawn is small enough, a simple watering can will do the trick. Just make sure you are covering your lawn evenly.
Finally, you can always let the rain take over. If you are lucky enough to live in a climate where rainfall is heavy, there should be no need for you to water your grass an excessive amount. In areas where drought is common, however, you may want to consider an irrigation system. Remember that at the end of the day, your lawn depends on you to keep it healthy.