Watering your lawn might seem like a must once summer rolls around. Under the hot sun, your grass is prone to burning up quickly. This can result in brown grass that no one wants to see while walking up to the house. If you know someone who has become obsessive with lawn watering (or that person is you), you may want to think about the consequences of water consumption. Grass watering may seem like a normal, up-keep chore, but it might be doing more harm to the environment than good.
Learn the factsThe average American household uses 320 gallons of water per day, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Shockingly, 30 percent of this water goes toward outdoor use. While it may be eye pleasing to tend to your garden and lawn, you aren’t the only one who’s worried about landscape irrigation. Outdoor water use on plants, grass and other foliage accounts for one-third of all residential water use. In turn, this results in 9 billion gallons of water consumption per day. Understandably, some regions of the country use more water than others. For instance, a household’s outdoor water usage in the Southwest may be 60 percent of what it consumes daily. However, the main fact to acknowledge is that up to 50 percent of the water used outdoors goes to waste. Water waste is due to several inefficient watering methods and systems. Many of these tactics can be prevented, and here are three ways you can offset your own lawn watering mistakes.
- Take care of your weeds. While tall grass can reduce the number of weeds that sprout up in your lawn, there’s no guarantee it will be flawless. For this reason, you’ll want to keep up with the weeds that you spot in your yard. Weeding can be a tedious task, but consider these plants to be invaders, dedicated to ruining your beautiful yard. Weeds are direct competition for grass, utilizing the moisture under your soil. By eliminating them, you are giving your grass more chance to grow strong and plentiful throughout your lawn.
- Let your grass grow taller. This might seem like it defeats the point of keeping a manicured lawn. However, taller grass is the key to healthier grass, according to the EPA. When your grass is short, it is more prone to burning under the hot sun. Tall grass shades the surface of the soil, which reduces evaporation. In turn, the grass keeps itself moisturized with little help. Additionally, weeds that attempt to grow beneath the surface are less likely to sprout up due to the shade from tall grass.
- Be mindful of the weather. Understandably, the weather plays a large role in the growth and health of your grass. Ideally, you should avoid cutting your grass in the heat of the day when the grass is dry. Doing so will cause the plants to lose water quickly. When it comes to watering, skip it if there has been a rainstorm within the past week. Typically, a storm that leaves a minimum of one-inch of water on your lawn is enough to keep it well irrigated. You also don’t need to heavily water your lawn if there is an upcoming rainstorm in the forecast that could give you at least one inch of water.