Thirstday, July 5, 2012

Newsletter 18.5 – Thursday, July 5, 2012

    You’ll love your garden … It’s our promise!

    To water or not to water…
    that is the question!

    We are experiencing drought conditions all over the country and have been advised to reduce our water consumption. 

    But still the question is asked, ‘Should I water my lawn?’

    America’s Best Flowers received information from our friend Donna, at Heritage Seed Company that we thought should be shared with you. 

    Please keep in mind that the following information applies only to established lawns (at least 2 years old)

    Lawns younger than 2 years will need more water, not less.

    Annual and perennial flowers, trees and shrubs also need to be watered more often during these extreme conditions.

    With Donna’s permission we are passing this information on to you:

    Managing Lawns During Drought Conditions

    Turfgrass plants need soil moisture to sustain normal growth and development. If a lawn does not receive adequate water, it will begin to wilt, the leaves will curl or roll to conserve water by reducing leaf area.  As the drought stress increases, the leaves of the plants will turn brown and the grass will go into dormancy, meaning it stops growing and loses its green color.  Dormant grass will die once the crowns, rhizomes and roots begin to dehydrate.  Root desecration will begin when soil temps reach 80 degrees at a 1 inch depth.


    Steps to Help Your Lawn thru Drought Conditions

    1.     Watering:  Once the lawn is in the dormant stage, apply ¼ to ½ inch of water every 2 to 4 weeks to maintain the moisture in the crown and roots to survive until the growing conditions improve.

    2.     Mowing:Mow as infrequently as possible at a height of 3 Inches, never taking off more than 1/3 of the leaf surface per mowing.

    3.     Fertilization:Avoid applying Nitrogen to the lawn during hot, dry conditions, the lawn will respond by putting out excessive growth when they should be going dormant. Best to fertilize in early September rather than summer.

    4.     Traffic:Limit traffic on the lawn as much as possible.  Drought stress will occur faster with increased soil compaction.


    When more frequent rainfalls begin to occur, the lawn will come out of its dormant state.  You can then see if any fall lawn renovation is needed.


    Fall Lawn Renovation

    1.      Fertilization:Once adequate rainfall begins and the lawn is no longer in a dormant state, a fertilizer application to maximize re-growth of dormant turf is suggested. As a general rule, apply one to one-and-a-half pounds of nitrogen per 1,000-square feet of lawn to encourage regrowth of weak or thin turf.

    Reseeding:  Sept. 1- Oct. 1 is an optimal time for reseeding the thin or bare areas of your lawn.  Watering the reseeded areas is essential to good establishment.

    `til next week,
        ~ Shirley

    Hot Weather

    Carol and Ed Knapton, owners of Americas's Best Flowers You’ll Love Your Garden … It’s Our Promise! May the Holy Spirit Guide You! God Bless
    Edward Knapton says Keep on Smiling!
    Sec – Treasurer Berry Hill Farms, Inc.
    DBA Americas Best Flowers Garden Center
    4311 Vilas Hope Road
    Cottage Grove, WI 53527
    608-222-2269 Fax 608-222-1234 Cell 608-698-5627