Having temperatures of 90+ degrees? It’s important to understand how to water in summer.
It’s important that you are watering consistently and at the right times of the day at this time of year. Keep in mind that roads, sidewalks and rock beds are heat conductors. This will cause water to evaporate quickly and not get to the root systems where it is needed most.
This is why you may have been noticing grass edges along these surfaces that look dried out. With high temperatures and winds, lawns lose 1.5-2” of moisture per week through evapotranspiration. This means, to maintain a healthy lawn, you must replenish that amount of water.
You should be watering 3-4 days per week (Do follow any local restrictions that may be in place at your location). But, if highs are consistently in the 90’s, you will want to water every other day. Water early morning only, do not split your time between morning and evening. Splitting your watering creates shallow roots and allows for more weeds to germinate. Water in 2 to 3 back to back cycles in the early morning before 9am.
Rotor heads should run for 45-50 minutes and stationary pop ups should run for 25-30 minutes total time. This will allow time for the water to soak in and push down further in the root system.
Example: You have 4 pop-up stations and 3 rotor zones. The pop-up stations should be set to run for 9 min each cycle and rotors 16 minutes. The total run time per cycle would be roughly 1 hour and 24 minutes. You would want to set your 3 start times for 4am, 5:30am, and 7am. Watering should always be finished by 9am.
Please Note: The information above applies to ESTABLISHED LAWNS ONLY.
See our Watering Guidelines For Colorado Springs’ Lawns for seasonal watering information.
Ascochyta Leaf Blight
Kentucky Bluegrass thrives between 55-85 degrees. If we encounter sustained temperatures above or below those marks, the grass will sometimes try to go into dormancy to conserve nutrients. This is a natural occurrence and most of the time will be called Ascochyta Leaf Blight.
This issue is identified by pinched tips on the grass blades that brown out from the top down.
With proper watering, this typically goes away within 10-14 days from the initial appearance.
You can read more about Ascochyta Leaf Blight on the CSU Extension article.