The result can include the spread of fungal disease like Red Thread, the shallow rooting of grass, the onset of moss, and the infestation of weeds and weed grasses.. Rely on rain. This is why the cold temperatures of northern winters are said to create desert conditions. Established lawns usually require about 1 1/2 inches of water per week. Woody plants with shallow root systems require supplemental watering during extended dry fall and winter periods. The rule that I have found reading several articles on this topic and having looked at this topic of when to stop watering in a past article is looking at the soil temperature map. Evergreen plants that benefit include spruce, fir, arborvitae, yew, Oregon grape-holly, boxwood, and Manhattan euonymus. Standing water or prolonged heavy rain could ruin some of the seed or possibly wash the seed away. If average temperatures remain above the mid-40's, you can water your lawn on a weekly basis, applying whatever is necessary to bring the total amount of water to one-inch per week. Lawns under such stress are limited in their ability to recover from mowing and can be damaged even more. For more information, see the following Planttalk ColoradoTM script 1751, Fall and Winter Watering: during drought. Equal Opportunity | It’s not uncommon for our clients to ask – should I water my lawn in the winter? Apply water to many locations under the dripline and beyond if possible. Apply 5 gallons two times per month for a newly planted shrub. At this point you can stop watering as frequently and treat the sod as you would an established lawn. Don’t Stop Watering Your Lawn in Fall. Moisture and temperature are the two main factors in germination. 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. But when the temperature cools in the late summer, the grass will green up and grow again. The particles are closer together in the denser soils, and the freezing process slows. Newly planted trees are most susceptible to winter drought injury. Use a ruler to measure your tree’s diameter at 6″ above ground level. Please use our website feedback form. It freezes between the tiny pebbles, rocks, and soil. Once the soil temperatures approach the 40 degree fahrenheit mark, this is the time I start looking at winterizing and stopping the flow of water to the outside lawn irrigation system. Water in the ground becomes ice. Trees generally take one year to establish for each inch of trunk diameter. When to Stop Watering Annuals and Perennials in Fall In the winter, the surface of the ground cools, but the deeper layers are probably still warmer. To get a good idea of what’s happening under your grass, you’ll need to monitor the weather. If you live in an area that consistently gets snow over the winter seasons then you can stop watering around the end of September or October because at that time your lawn is going into dormancy. How much should you water your lawn? It’s usually warm in Texas well into September and October. By watering only one time per week, you force the grass’ roots to dig deeper for available water. You may be tempted to stop watering the lawn in fall, but don’t get stingy with the water yet. Keep reading to discover all the specifics. Check the Soil. On the other hand, watering too infrequently can cause the roots to dry out and the lawn to yellow. Diseases can set in if your lawn is receiving too much moisture. If your area receives one inch or more of precipitation per week you don't need to water. For all your lawn care needs, we’re here. Often there is little or no snow cover to provide soil moisture from October through March. Water within the dripline of the shrub and around the base. Webmaster | Your lawn should receive 1″ of water per week unless it is in dormancy. Plan to water your tree up until temperatures dip into the 30s for a few days straight. Water your plants with room temperature water. Trees, shrubs, perennials and lawns under these conditions may be damaged if they do not receive supplemental water. When to Stop Watering Annuals and Perennials in Fall Lawns also are prone to winter damage. It’s a “given” for most of us. If you live in a more humid climate that gets sun year around then simply curb your watering to once or twice a week for 20 minutes a zone. If the temperature rises above 80 degrees Fahrenheit, your lawn will need more water than usual. CSU A-Z Search The rule of thumb for lawns is to water one-inch deep each time you water. Morning, around 6 to 8 a.m., is the best time to water. Instead, mow the grass after a rainfall or after irrigation day. If it’s mild, then you can keep at it depending on the rainfall in your region. In general, it’s best to continue watering your grass during the fall. When it’s time to water, choose an appropriate sprinkler for your lawn to save on water use. When it comes to when to fertilize your lawn, this is the most important factor at playthat determines when the best time is for a feed. Garden beds with non-native flowers or vegetables usually need some water in the driest months. Avoid mowing the lawn during drought stress. Here are some lawn care tips for the fall: Watering – When you are caring for autumn lawns, watch your irrigation. Plants receiving reflected heat from buildings, walls and fences are more subject to damage. Grass clippings decompose quickly and do not contribute to thatch. In hot, dry weather, water shrubs and flowers daily. Contact your local county Extension office through our County Office List. Winter watering is advisable with late planted perennials, bare root plants, and perennials located in windy or southwest exposures. If you’re wondering when to stop watering the lawn in Texas, as well as other plants, we’ll give you the rundown here. The best way to get a sense of when to start watering your lawn is simply by the temperature … It’s different from the temperature you’re experiencing in the air. The low angle of winter sun makes this more likely on south or west exposures. If it drops below 60 degrees Fahrenheit, lawns usually require less water. Avoid mowing the lawn during drought stress. The length of time that the air is cold is a determining factor. Regardless of whether or not you anticipate snowfall, do not stop watering your lawn until the ground freezes. Know that your lawn is benefiting from the sprinklers. When watering a new lawn, use just enough water to keep the soil moist at seed depth. Mow frequently enough so that no more than ⅓ of the grass blade is removed. Keep an eye on rainfall totals and remember that most lawns only need 3/4 inch to 1 inch or water per week. Disclaimer | Revised 3/13. This way, it's unlikely that you'll shock the plant or damage its roots. Temperatures matter. So, do you water grass in the winter? If you live in Denver, a warmer region, or an area with a mild winter, you can hydrate your tree in winter if it looks thirsty. However, historic ET and rainfall data for most of Minnesota shows a need of 0.5 to 1.0 inches of irrigation per week during September and October. Proper Ground Temperature for cool-season grasses (such as Fescue) Anticipate needing to water your lawn during the fall to keep your grass healthy and prepared for the long-term. The longer a cold spell endures, the more time the ground has to freeze. Just make sure the thermometer reads over 40 degrees. Affected plants may appear perfectly normal and resume growth in the spring using stored food energy. Winter watering combined with mulching can prevent this damage (See fact sheet 7.214, Mulches for Home Grounds.). The result can include the spread of fungal disease like Red Thread, the shallow rooting of grass, the onset of moss, and the infestation of weeds and weed grasses.. “If you maintain your lawn during the warm months with proper watering, mowing, aerating and fertilizing, your grass should be strong enough to withstand the winter and grow back strong in the spring,” Mann says. In fact, many residents even plan their landscape around using the best grass for Texas heat, so they can maintain a beautiful lawn. Instead, mow the grass after a rainfall or after irrigation day. The best time of day to water your lawn is before 10 a.m., or between 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. Be sure not to ever water your lawn at night when the moisture will linger until morning. Go too long without watering your lawn and it starts to die. You should not completely stop watering your lawn in the fall until the ground freezes. Perennials transplanted late in the fall will not establish as quickly as those planted in spring. Non-Discrimination Statement | Unless your lawn is receiving hydration from adequate rainfall, you still need to water it through the fall season. Apply to CSU | Grass planted adjacent to streets or parking lots will also use more water, particularly if the paved surface is dark colored. We know we need to water grass during those blazing summer months. The following recommendations assume shrubs are mulched to retain moisture. When winter approaches, you’re naturally asking yourself, “When should I stop watering my lawn?” To answer that question, you need to know when the ground is officially considered “frozen.” Here’s the short answer: When the ground contains water and the temp falls below 32 degrees Fahrenheit for several consecutive days, you have seasonally frozen ground. Newly established lawns, whether seeded or sodded, are especially susceptible. Simply because your human eye can’t see the fall growth doesn’t mean it’s not happening. Plants may be weakened and all or parts may die in late spring or summer when temperatures rise. Lawn watering is often stopped in early fall. As soon as the temps begin to drop, you certainly notice. Large established shrubs (more than 6 feet) require 18 gallons on a monthly basis. Conventional thinking is that because evapo-transpiration (ET) rates are low and the turf isn’t growing much, it is OK to stop watering. Windy sites result in faster drying of sod and plants and require additional water. If your lawn is receiving at least one inch of water per week during the autumn months, then you do not have to water it. Some people may stop watering on the day it rains, but if there has been significant rain it may be enough to stop watering for several days. For more information on fertilizing lawns refer to HGI… Providing trusted, practical education to help you solve problems, develop skills and build a better future. CSU Extension - A division of the Office of Engagement. With deep roots adept at seeking out water way down in the soil, this kind of lawn requires less watering than some traditional grass lawns. Bare root plants require longer to establish than container plants. Wherever you live, Extension’s job is to determine what issues, concerns and needs are unique to each community, and offer sound and effective solutions. Moisture and temperature are the two main factors in germination. But remember, you’ll be watering in vain if you’re doing so when the moisture is high and when the lows have been at or below freezing for an extended time. Grass planted adjacent to streets or parking lots will also use more water, particularly if the paved surface is dark colored. Continue to provide supplemental moisture as needed until the ground is frozen. Although you might be expecting snow this coming winter, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t continue to water your lawn during the fall –even in late autumn. Image Credit: dolgachov/iStock/Getty Images. A solid layer (persisting for more than a month) of ice on lawns can cause suffocation or result in matting of the grass. Decrease amounts to account for precipitation. If using a deep-root fork or needle, insert no deeper than 8 inches into the soil. Lawns under such stress are limited in their ability to recover from mowing and can be damaged even more. Apply water to the most critical part of the root zone within the dripline. fall Watering Lawn. When the temperature is cooler, water less. Remember that the days are shorter, and the sun doesn’t hold its intensity for nearly as long as the summer months. When the ground is frozen, the water won’t make it down to the root zone because the hard, frozen soil acts as a barrier. Start watering your lawn too early and it goes to waste as soil isn’t in the condition to sufficiently absorb it. Learn more about us or about our partners. Susceptibility increases for lawns with south or west exposures. Once November arrives, water the lawn only once per month. These include European white and paper birches; Norway, silver, red, Rocky Mountain and hybrid maples; lindens, alders, hornbeams, dogwoods, willows, and mountain ashes.