Lawn Watering Guidelines for the Greater Colorado Springs Area
|Season||Month||Watering Guidelines||Notes/Weekly Watering Requirements|
|Late Fall through Winter||November, December, January, February||This is a very important time to water the lawn. Most damage occurs during the January to February time frame.||Water 1-2 times per month on days above 50 degrees. Water up to 1” each time that you water using a garden hose and sprinkler.|
|Spring||March, April, May||Water 1-2 times per week depending on natural precipitation.||1” per week recommended|
|Summer||June, July, August, Early September||Water each section heavily at least twice a week. Cycle and Soak to avoid runoff and wasted water.||1 ½” per week recommended|
|Early Fall||Mid-September, October||The shorter days and cooler nights help keep the soil cool and moist. You only need to water 1-2 times a week.||1” per week recommended|
- Proper watering is critical to your lawn’s health and vigor. Deep and infrequent watering is the best practice. This means wetting the soil to a depth of 3-5 inches per irrigation.
- Always be sure to water during the morning rather than in the afternoon or evening. Do not separate the waterings to morning and evening either.
- Let the turf determine the watering frequency. See how long your turf can go without water and set a program based on that, rather than a predetermined schedule. This will help conserve water to use only as needed.
- Measure your water output to determine if you are over or under watering based on the time of year, and the recommendations above. This is a very important step in a good watering program.
- Actual runtimes vary from yard to yard. A good baseline would be 20 – 30 minutes per zone for popups, 40 – 50 minutes for Rotor heads, and longer for low-impact MP Rotors.
- Our soils are a mixture of clay, sand, or a combination of both. “Cycle and Soak” is the best approach to eliminating runoff and waste. This means, instead of watering a zone for a solid 45 minutes, try breaking it up into 3 different start times of 15 minutes.
Other Watering Guidelines to Consider:
- Proper watering is critical to your lawn’s health and vigor. Deep and infrequent watering is the best practice. During the hotter months of the year, the lawn will require more water, so that may mean ¾” of irrigation at a time rather than the ½” of irrigation typically required in the cooler months. This means wetting the soil to a depth of 4-6 inches per irrigation.
- Water at times of low wind.
- Water during the very early morning rather than in the afternoon or evening to minimize the risk for disease.
- To reduce water runoff and to help water penetrate and soak deeply into the soil, we recommend a “Cycle and Soak” watering schedule. Instead of watering for a long period of time and allowing the water to run off into the street, divide the total watering time per zone by 3. Water 3 shorter intervals (all in the same morning). For example at 3am, 4am, and 5am, before winds pick up. Each cycle, water for 15 minutes for rotor heads, 8 minutes for stationary pop-ups, and 30 minutes for low volume MP Rotator heads. (These times are averages sampled from other lawns to reach a desired amount of water, which is ½” at a time.) Water less in shaded or poorly drained areas.
- Do not water every day or two. Frequent, short watering encourages shallow roots, unhealthy grass, plants, and leaves turf susceptible to drought, weeds, and disease.
- Water newer trees using soaker hoses or direct hose drips once every couple of weeks.