Drought conditions have plagued the Central Missouri region and have wreaked havoc on much of our turf. Although many of us do not have an in-ground irrigation system, any supplemental watering during a drought period like this can go a long way to keep your grass alive where possible.
The cool season grasses, tall fescue and Kentucky bluegrass, typically go dormant when under these conditions as a survival mechanism and typically will come back when conditions are more favorable. If they go too long without water, they can (and often do) die. If this is your case, you will certainly need to seed as soon as possible as the winter will be sneaking up on us sooner than we would like and germination rates are greatly reduced as the soil temperatures cool.
- Do Water 1” per week if at all possible. Any water is better than none.
- Do mow tall until sufficient watering has occurred and turf has recovered. Even though cool temperatures would allow you to drop the mower deck this time of year, a taller plant will be more durable when stressed.
- Do plan renovation seeding of the turf to help thicken thin areas due to drought stress. Any seeding will need to be done as soon as possible for best results. Dormant seeding is also a reasonable option especially if it is difficult for you to water.
- Do Call Atkins for all your irrigation questions and needs.
- Don’t walk on turf and do your best to reduce traffic as much as possible. If the crown of the plant is damaged during this condition it can kill the turf areas.
- Don’t Scalp your lawn when mowing.