DIY Network

The Right Way to Water and Feed a Lawn

Keeping your lawn properly watered and fertilized will ensure its health and appearance. Here are a few tips to keep a lawn healthy.

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keep lawn properly watered and fertilized

Watering the Lawn
Grass needs about one inch of water per week. Many people tend to over-water. Don’t water lightly several times a week. Water once or twice, deeply. Water heavily, then wait a day or two to let the soil dry out. Then water again. Learn how to manage your water. If you don’t know how much or how often to apply water in your area, call your county extension agent for advice.

Paper Cup Demo
Place about 10 paper cups, weighted down with rocks or coins, in random spots in your yard. Place your sprinkler in its usual position and let it run for 30 minutes. Examine the amount of water in each cup. If the amount of water in each cup isn’t even, your sprinkler is not applying water uniformly. Adjust your sprinkler or move it around in the yard so that the entire yard receives the same amount of water.

Irrigation Options
If you don’t want to get out in the yard with your hose or sprinkler, you may want to consider installing an irrigation system. Some systems use satellite technology to water your lawn according to your area’s weather forecast. If you have an irrigation system that’s timed to go off at certain times, remember to readjust it if you’ve had a lot of rain. You don’t want to over-irrigate your lawn.

Fertilizer
Experts say fertilize at least three to four times a year. Use a slow release fertilizer because the nitrogen breaks down slowly to provide your lawn with a constant feeding. Don’t apply fertilizer in hot weather because it will burn your lawn. Some experts say all three numbers on the fertilizer bag should be the same. The first number represents the amount of nitrogen. The second number represents the amount of phosphorus. The third number represents the amount of potassium. Apply fertilizer using a spreader. Pour half of the bag into the spreader and walk up and down in your yard. Pour the other half in the spreader and apply in a perpendicular pattern.

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