SUMMER WATERING TIPS
The recent drought
has caused many stresses on our natural environment. Our area has
experienced its hottest and driest mid summer in some time. Our early
spring time luscious, bright green lawns and gardens have given way to a
dry and sandy sierra like setting. Fortunately even though our lawns
have turned “crispy brown”, that doesn’t spell the end for our grass.
During severe drought conditions, most lawns will not die, they just
remain in a dormant brown state. In order for the grass roots to
survive, they need less than an inch of rain in a 30 day period. That
inch of water won’t make the grass look green but roots will stay alive
until the rain falls regularly again.
routinely water their lawns during drought conditions risk the chance of
losing their lawns to a grass root-eating pest known as the white grub.
The Masked Chafer beetle and the Japanese beetle will look for good soil
moisture to lay their eggs during hot periods in July. As the beetles’
eggs mature, they form into grubs. Grubs will feed on moist
well-maintained lawn roots. Eliminating watering lawns during hot
periods of the summer and allowing grass to go dormant will drive these
pests out of your lawn area.
and shrubs are not as resistant to severe drought as lawns are. Due to
the lack of rain, the majority of trees and shrubs, both established and
newly transplanted, are stressed. Tree stress can often lead to the
invasion of all types of pests and diseases which then can cause severe
decline and death of any kind of tree and shrub. Trees, unlike grass,
take longer to establish and are harder to replace. It is vitally
important to your trees’ health and well being to take the following
steps so your trees maintain a healthy vigor during severe drought
planted trees or young trees (1 to 3 years) need approximately 1 to 2
inches of water a week (which is equivalent to 10 to 20 gallons).
watering newly planted or established trees, use a soaker hose or adjust
your garden hose for a slow steady stream.
hot and dry conditions, larger established trees need a minimum of 200
to 250 gallons of water every week. A garden hose or a soaker hose
should be placed under the drip line of an established tree at a slow
steady stream. Good mulching practices will help the soil around the
drip line area maintain moisture. A 2 inch to 4 inch layer of mulch
should be placed around the base of the tree. It is important to
remember not to pile the mulch directly on the trunk of the tree.