Moved into new house a week ago new sod in yard, I have been running the
sprinkler 4 times a day plenty wet.
We live in the midwest, temps in the lower 30's at night, mid 50's to low
60's in the day.Heat tape on the exterior water pipeing.
How long should I water this sod till I winterize the sprinkler system?
Four times a day should not be necessary, unless it is summer in
Arizona. Did a contractor install it? How often did they recommend?
County extension service in your area would have the best advice, but
here are good links:
A month, in my area, is the length of time for daily watering.
Important that the sod was rolled, so roots contact soil. Also
important that soil gets water, not just the sod. At this time of year,
with a new lawn, it will help assure the lawn survives winter by keeping
heavy leaf cover and piles of snow off the lawn. If it no longer needs
mowing, it would be a sign it has gone dormant and doesn't need watering
unless the soil is totally dry.
Watering four times a day keeps the grass wet too much of the time, and
might make it vulnerable to diseases. I can't remember what winter with
ice, snow and hard freezes is like, but it is nigh. Must be about time
to winterize the sprinkler system :o)
I wonder if he gets a kickback from the local water company.
I had some repairs done on my sprinklers last spring, and the tech set
the watering times so long that I had a swamp in my back yard until I
Rich Greenberg Marietta, GA, USA richgr atsign panix.com + 1 770 321 6507
Eastern time. N6LRT I speak for myself & my dogs only. VM\'er since CP-67
With the ground temperature dropping germination and early growth is
going to be slow. That is the bad part. The good part is it is not as
likely to suffer from low moisture since it is not hot and does not have
drying winds. This is a little late for seed in most of the Midwest, but I
would expect it will do fine
I would water as necessary to keep the ground moist. A week after it
starts turning green you can allow the surface to dry out, but you still
want to avoid letting it get really dry. For the most part nature will take
care of it. Come the middle of next spring it will fill in and look good.
Grass in the Midwest likes the cool damp weather of fall and spring.
As it gets colder it will stop growing for the year, since this is so
weather dependent it is really hard to say exactly when that will be.
Joseph, I think you missed that he said it's sod, not seed. I agree
with Norminn, watering 4 times a day is way too much and more likely to
do harm than good. He didn't make it clear how long the sod has been
in place. In cooler weather, I would be tapering off the watering to
once evey other day a few weeks after installation and by 6 weeks, I'd
be down to twice a week.
Good Idea Steve, drag out the hose and water 8K sq ft.by hand, after we
spent $2k on a sprinkler system, then after a week I can light a match to it
and burn it off.
Are you watering new sod or an established yard?
You don't say how *long* each of the waterings are, but I assume they're short
waterings to just keep the sod moist. At this stage anything more is a waste
of water (after sod is placed, frequent shallow waterings are the order of the
day until the sod starts to bind).
Once the sod starts to bind (i.e., you can't easily pull up a piece of sod
anymore), you can cut down the # of waterings, and make them a bit longer. The
whole point to make the roots "reach" for the water so you don't end up with
turf with shallow roots.
As to how long, given you're in Chicago and it's early November, it's basically
go until it looks like you're going to get multiple hard freezes in a row
(probably the next big cold front). Once the grass freezes hard (upper couple
of inches below freezing), the grass is going to go dormant anyhow, so you might
as well blow out the system around that point. Sodding this late in the year,
it's basically walking a tightrope -- you want to water as long as the grass
continues to root, but you don't want to ruin your sprinkler heads by letting
them get caught in a really hard freeze.
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