When to Stop Watering Grass in the Fall

Summer is considered the best time for watering grass. Adequate water supply can make the lawn grass super green, lush, and healthy.

Nevertheless, the water demand of grass depends on the evaporation rate which is out of your hands because it’s controlled by the climate. 

The water demand of grass decreases during late summer/early fall to late fall, while it increases during summer and early spring. 

In this article, we will briefly discuss the following:

  • When to stop watering grass in the Fall
  • Why it’s important to keep watering the lawn in the Fall
  • General lawn care tips

Related post: Seasonal Lawn Care Guide and Tips

Fall Lawn Care: Keep watering the lawn

when to stop watering grass fall lawn care

Grass needs water in the cool season, or fall. During this critical period, it is not wise to stop watering your lawn.

Water supply, along with proper nutrient uptake is necessary for the new lawn and root system to stay healthy.

The grass will never achieve optimal health for the upcoming winter if the lawn is not absorbing nutrients sufficiently. 

Stolons, the underground part of the grass, provide a solid foundation for the rest of the grass blade.

Keeping the stolon (the stem structure of the grass) watered is important to ensure a healthy lawn in the growing periods.

How to water the new lawn in fall

To water the new grass in fall, it is better to adopt a micro-irrigation system. 

This method can provide an adequate amount of water to the lawn and also conserve irrigation water [1].

You can run the system for 5 to 10 minutes in the morning. If the temperature starts falling too fast, then you should run the system at most two times a week. 

When you should stop watering your lawn

If your geography has four distinct seasons, then you’ll have different growing seasons which will have different watering requirements.

During northern winters, as temperatures fall, so will the evaporation rate.

As a result, the soil will retain more moisture, meaning that it will require less water. 

Also, if your area receives sufficient rainfall, there will be less necessity to water the new lawns frequently.

when to stop watering grass - snow covered lawn

Maintaining a strict watering schedule is a must during this critical time. While watering, you should have knowledge about the saturation point.

Over-watering can damage the root zone and even create an environment where fungal diseases can thrive. When there is heavy snow or rainfall, you do not have to water your lawn.

Remember that even if it is cold temperatures outside, you still need to water your new lawn.

When the soil freezes, water that is in the ground becomes locked in ice form.

Due to this, the turf is unable to absorb any of it. This can lead to dehydration or even death of the grass.

Related post: Will Watering Dead Grass Bring My Lawn Back Life?

Best lawn care tips when the ground Starts to freeze

Lawn mowing

Generally, growth periods are considered the warmer months because cooler temperatures cause grasses to be dormant.

During the warmer months, is the time to get your lawnmowers out to cut your grass about an inch or two in height.

Overseeding (Re-seeding)

If the soil freezes, there is a high chance that the new grass may die. That’s why you should consider overseeding (reseeding) when the temperature rises for strong growth.

Watering & Fertilizing

It’s crucial to keep watering your lawn even during cold temperatures. Cool-season grasses like Kentucky bluegrass will get multifarious advantages if the owner can correctly fertilize the lawn.

These grasses have the evapotranspiration rate of 3 to 8mm (about a 1/4 of an inch) per day [2].

Watering and fertilizing will ensure a delicate balance and vigorous growth during the early and late spring.

Aerating

When the ground freezes, the ice will block both the air and the water’s path through the topsoil. This can be harmful to your turf’s health.

aerating the lawn - when to stop watering the lawn

You should begin aerating the land by loosening the compacted layer of the ice.

While doing so, be careful to not damage the root system underneath. Good aeration will allow sufficient oxygen to the grass roots.

Related post: Why and When You Should Be Aerating Your Lawn

Mulching

Applying mulch will reduce the evaporation from your growing medium, meaning that it’ll hold the moisture better and prevent your lawn from dehydrating.

You can use organic materials like straw, branches, coco peat as the mulching materials. Synthetic mulches are also great choices for protecting the topsoil.

FAQs

What month should You stop watering your lawn?

You should not water the grass during late winter or when the ground starts to freeze over.

When should I stop watering the lawn in fall?

You should continue following a watering schedule until the soil begins to become frozen ground.

Do I Need To Water My Lawn Frequently During The Summer Months?

During the warmer seasons, you should water the yard based on the water demand of your region and your grass type.

Related post: When Is The Best Time To Water Your Lawn In Hot Weather

Conclusion

Water must be supplied during the winter but the frequency should be reduced as the evaporation rate is lower at this time.

When the ground is covered with ice, you should continue watering and break the ice as it blocks water’s path and damages the grass blades.

References

[1] Leinauer, B.; Sevostianova, E.; Serena, M.; Schiavon, M. and Macolino, S. 2010. Conservation of Irrigation Water for Urban Lawn Areas. Acta Horticulturae, 881(881): 487-492.

[2] Huang, B. 2006. Turfgrass water requirements and factors affecting water usage. pp: 193-205. In: Water Quality and Quantity Issues for Turfgrass in Urban Landscapes (Eds. Beard, J.B. and Kenna, M.P.). CAST Special Publication.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.