Watering Your Lawn

Written by April Reinhardt (last updated September 16, 2019)

In order to maintain a healthy lawn, proper and adequate watering is vital. The only time you should water your lawn is when it is necessary. Some people water their lawns immediately after mowing, simply because they've formed the habit of doing so. Their lawn might not need the water, yet they water it, nonetheless. How do you determine if your lawn needs water? With a screwdriver, check the soil about three inches under the surface. If the soil is damp, then it is not necessary to water your lawn. This holds true even if the lawn surface looks dry. When it is time to water your lawn, follow these guidelines to water effectively and efficiently:

  • Remove thatch for a more efficient lawn ecosystem. Excess thatch in your lawn will cause excess water runoff. If you have thatch that is more than one-half-inch thick, then you should use a metal rake to de-thatch your lawn.
  • Water the soil around the roots of your lawn. Every time you water your lawn, you should aim to moisten the soil to a depth of six inches, since that is where the active root zone is located. Water your lawn for fifteen minutes and then test your lawn twenty-four hours later by digging a small hole to determine how deeply the soil is wet. If the depth is six inches, divide the number 120 by six to arrive at twenty. Therefore, you can determine that it takes twenty minutes of watering to wet the root zone.
  • Water at the correct time of day. The best time to water your lawn is early in the morning, or later in the evening. While water during the day is oftentimes more convenient for people, you take the chance of having more water evaporation, especially during hot or humid weather.

The typical lawn should receive about one inch of water each week. If you have frequent rains, then you will need to water less often. Remember that when you do water, don't do it too quickly, as you might experience water runoff. If your soil root zone test outlined above indicates that you should water for twenty minutes at a time, but your lawn experiences water runoff at fifteen minutes, turn off the water when you see water runoff, wait an hour, and then continue watering. How often you water your lawn is never as important as how much water gets to the roots of your lawn.

Author Bio

April Reinhardt

An admin­istrator for a mutual fund man­age­ment firm, April deals with the writ­ten word daily. She loves to write and plans to author a memoir in the near future. April attend­ed More­head State Uni­ver­sity to pursue a BA degree in Ele­men­tary Edu­ca­tion. ...


Cleaning a Sleeping Bag

Washing a sleeping bag can be tedious and time-consuming. The key to keeping your sleeping bag useful and in great ...

Discover More

Fixing Leaky Pipes

Fixing minor pipe leaks is not a labor-intensive chore. The worst part of the job may be that you have to fit into tight ...

Discover More

Protecting Household Pets from Parasites

Exercising a little common sense, keeping your home clean, and making regular visits to your vet can help protect your ...

Discover More
More Gardening Tips

Making a Rain Barrel

One of the biggest expenses that any landscaper or gardener usually faces is the water bill. There are several ways that ...

Discover More

Conserving Water in the Garden

Whether your trying to save money, have a limited supply, or you are just trying to be eco-friendly, conserving water is ...

Discover More

Watering Seeds Properly

Have you ever stopped to think about just how difficult watering seeds can be? While all seeds may need water to properly ...

Discover More

FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured gardening tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."


If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] (all 7 characters, in the sequence shown) in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is two less than 3?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


FREE SERVICE: Receive an e-mail several times each week with a featured gardening tip. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)