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Best Time to Water Grass Seed

4 min read

When is the best time to water new grass seed or an established lawn? The experts at Jonathan Green have the answers you need.

At Jonathan Green, lush green lawns are our business. We have been perfecting the art of green lawns since 1881 and have continued this tradition for six generations. We employ the latest scientific technology and research to ensure that we have the best products on the market, so you end up with a strong, healthy, dark-green lawn.

How to Water Just After Seeding

For the best results, water the seedbed a little bit every day to keep newly planted grass seed wet while it germinates. Light watering twice or three times a day – in the early morning, early afternoon, and late afternoon – will keep young seedlings moist, helping them to fully germinate and grow into strong grass plants.

If the soil gets too dry the germination process will stop, so don’t allow the tender seedlings to dry out. One way to prevent this from happening is to use Jonathan Green Top Dress™ Seedling Cover and Growth Accelerator to keep moisture close to the seed for the best establishment.

After a few weeks, reduce watering to two to three times a week and water deeply, at least 30 minutes in each zone. This sends water deep down into the root zone and promotes deeper root growth.  Shallow watering does not provide the same benefit since much of the water is lost to evaporation and the roots stay at the surface where the moisture is. 

Once you start to mow these new areas, the lawn will need about 1/2 inch of water when irrigated during the growing season. NEVER water the lawn at night.  Excessive moisture on established grass leaves at night will increase the risk of fungal disease.

How to Water Established Lawns

Homeowners with irrigation systems tend to overwater their lawns, thinking that more water will make the lawn greener. This is not usually the case.

Established lawns don’t typically need more than about one inch of water a week, which translates to 20 to 30 minutes per zone, once or twice every week. This will help the grass roots grow deep into the ground and make the lawn more drought-tolerant. Water in the early morning to avoid excessive evaporation. If the weather is hot and dry, increase the frequency of watering to three or four times per week at 20 to 30 minutes per zone.

How to Water After Fertilizing

If the Jonathan Green lawn fertilizer you choose contains a broadleaf weed killer, it should be applied to damp grass but should not be watered in. (The weed killer must sit on the leaf in order to take effect.) If the product does not contain a broadleaf weed killer, you may water it in after application. All other products do not have to be watered in, but will activate faster if watered in or rained on.

For more tips on the best time to water grass seed, visit Jonathan Green online, or visit your nearest independent retailer for reliable lawn and garden advice that will help you achieve great results with your lawn.

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