Watering the lawn ? (again!!)

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  #1  
Old 04-05-2013, 12:34 PM
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Default Watering the lawn ? (again!!)

I did a search of the forum for prior threads on the subject and have read the differing water company sites. However I would still like to hear what others experience regarding watering the lawn once VS twice per week. I am inspired to ask as our lawn fertilizing company is recommending going back to twice per week at 40 minutes per station.

For the "winter" months I do once per week at 25 minutes per station with very acceptable results in the lawn and landscape.

I do recall that in past years even at twice per week it is nigh unto almost impossible to stay ahead of the heat and hot weather.

So the question is water twice per week at 40 minutes in the summer or something else? What do you do when the weather warms up and do you start this early?

I read somewhere that trying to keep a lawn here in FL that looks like the ones we had up North does not compute.....in FL we have to keep in mind we are trying to grow a lush lawn on a sand dune!!!!!!

btk
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  #2  
Old 04-05-2013, 03:49 PM
mulligan mulligan is offline
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Irrigation is not governed by time, but rather by the amount of water put on the turf. 1" per week is generally the rule of thumb. Place an empty tuna can on the lawn at various locations to measure approx. 1", and you'll have the time setting.
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  #3  
Old 04-05-2013, 04:05 PM
justjim justjim is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mulligan View Post
Irrigation is not governed by time, but rather by the amount of water put on the turf. 1" per week is generally the rule of thumb. Place an empty tuna can on the lawn at various locations to measure approx. 1", and you'll have the time setting.
Good advice. In the new area's of TV they installed a rather sophiscated irrigation system than suppose to "sense" the moisture in the ground etc. etc.
Problems! Anybody else had problems with their system? I've had two different ones out-----still a problem. Does anybody know how to fix these "things.". Iam about to have the less sophiscated system installed and throw this one out. @&(;&@!
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Old 04-05-2013, 04:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mulligan View Post
Irrigation is not governed by time, but rather by the amount of water put on the turf. 1" per week is generally the rule of thumb. Place an empty tuna can on the lawn at various locations to measure approx. 1", and you'll have the time setting.
Mulligan's is definitely the best advice . We had to repeat this a couple of times. The original owners darned near ruined the grass with their settings. The lawn company then told us to run the system at 45 mins in full sun grass and 25 minutes on our shrubs. Then decided we needed a new style of irrigation head and the new full-sun grass area now needs 75 minutes to get the amount of water. Now the "experts" say only need about 1" to 1 1/2" per week. But, that allows the so-called soil in our lot to dry out and the grass dies back so we run the system twice per week even if it rains a little. If we get a big rain with a normal day's irrigation amount, then we might turn it off for a cycle. Good luck!
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Old 04-05-2013, 04:20 PM
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Rip out the grass and put in rocks and xeriscape landscaping - oh, I forgot we can't this is The Villages not the desert!
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Old 04-05-2013, 04:23 PM
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In the desert, we watered our lawn for 5 minutes a day, 7 days a week and it was absolutely green all the time. It adds up to the same amount of water you would use if you watered 2 times a week for 20 minutes. When watering any more than 5 minutes a day, it all runs down the street and is wasted.
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Old 04-05-2013, 05:00 PM
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Jim Davis, Sumter County Agent, UF/IFAS conducted a seminar on this subject last week. His guidance is:

1. Water ONLY when the lawn shows signs of distress (bluish-green color; footprints stay visible; 30-50% of grass blades curl lengthwise).

2. Water no more than .75" per zone per session.

3. Determine the amount of water that is delivered to your lawn by spreading regular sized tuna fish cans spread throughout that individual zone. Measure the amount of water collected on the can during one run cycle per zone. If the amount of water collected is greater than .75" then reduce the time that that zone runs; increase the run time if less
than .75" of water is collected.

4. Empire Zoysia grass should not be watered more than once every 10-14 in the winter months when the grass is dormant.
During the dry months, water when grass shows sign of distress but no more than 2x per week.
During the wet season, there is usually no need to run system at all. Watch for signs if distress

5. The best time to water is between 4am and 7am

6. Established shrubs need very little water.

Also:
Only fertilize a lawn between early April and early Fall; no more than 4x total during that period.

Use fertilizer whose nitrogen (first number) is at least 15% water insoluable...more is better. The ratio of nitrogen to potassium (the third number) should be 1:1 up to NO greater than 2:1. Florida lawns do not require fertilizers with phosphorus. 15-0-15; 16-0-8; 30-0-30 are all good

Water in fertilizer wi approx .25" of water. Avoid applying fertilizer before apparent heavy rains.
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Old 04-05-2013, 06:20 PM
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Originally Posted by courtyard View Post
In the desert, we watered our lawn for 5 minutes a day, 7 days a week and it was absolutely green all the time. It adds up to the same amount of water you would use if you watered 2 times a week for 20 minutes. When watering any more than 5 minutes a day, it all runs down the street and is wasted.

This makes some sense.
What I do not understand here in TV is the amount of water recommended to be put out. There is barely 2 inches of top soil and then sand from there on to China. The water will continue to run through the sand....how does this benefit the root system?

For the last two years as either fungus or the grass dies back for what ever reason, I remove the dead area and create another bed of one kind or another. I refuse to continue dumping $$$$$ to try to maintain a lush lawn in a non lush lawn encironment. There is no grass growing at the beach for a reason!!!

btk
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Old 04-05-2013, 10:08 PM
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Originally Posted by justjim View Post
Good advice. In the new area's of TV they installed a rather sophiscated irrigation system than suppose to "sense" the moisture in the ground etc. etc.
I think it measures moisture in the air not the ground the sensor is on the edge of the roof, nothing is the ground, nice system.

When the irrigation company stop by to show me the system she said just leave it on bypass or u won't get enough water......that made zero sense, I put it on, if it wet or raining guess what the sprinklers don't turn on.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gomoho View Post
Rip out the grass and put in rocks and xeriscape landscaping - oh, I forgot we can't this is The Villages not the desert!
I tried to do it, the VP of TV said it ain't happening, but what about the Fl law that says I can do it, not here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by courtyard View Post
In the desert, we watered our lawn for 5 minutes a day, 7 days a week and it was absolutely green all the time. It adds up to the same amount of water you would use if you watered 2 times a week for 20 minutes. When watering any more than 5 minutes a day, it all runs down the street and is wasted.
I agree 110%

Quote:
Originally Posted by gmcneill View Post
Jim Davis, Sumter County Agent, UF/IFAS conducted a seminar on this subject last week. His guidance is:

5. The best time to water is between 4am and 7am
It amazing to see them going off at all hours of the day & nite up and down the street.

Also you not supposed to water around palms in the sun the water magnifies the water droplets on the frons and burns holes into them.
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Old 04-05-2013, 10:51 PM
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During the wet season, there is usually no need to run system at all. Watch for signs if distress
I was thinking exactly this myself. With the amount of rain that we get here in the winter why should we need to water at all. The recommended amount of water it .75 to 1 inch per week. I would guess that we get at least that much on average from June through September.
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  #11  
Old 04-06-2013, 05:08 AM
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Make sure, sprinkler is NOT hitting directly on palm trees. This causes "Butt Rot" on bottom of trunk, and eventually the tree will rot away.
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Old 04-06-2013, 06:04 AM
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I just planted a bunch of palms, they are all on a drip system 1 gal per hour for 4 hours every other day for 6 weeks then twice a week.
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Old 04-06-2013, 06:30 AM
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Bypass/auto switch controls watering or not if it rains. But behind that door is the SolarSync which controls the seasonal adjustment, which then controls the amount of time each zone waters based on the atmospheric conditions.
Mini weather station on your roof.
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Old 04-06-2013, 06:43 AM
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Hunter has run time calculator on their website which is really nice.

link

The default setting by the builder were really incorrect accordingly.

U program each zone based on terrain and plantings, it pops out a nice schedule that U can print.

these systems have 3 separate groups A,B & C within them, you can do a lot to water correctly and have your plants thrive rather than survive, takes about 15 minutes.

I split mine up where A is lawn, B is the plant beds, and C is the palms.

Each of those groups have different needs.
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Old 04-22-2013, 03:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Winston O Boogie jr View Post
I was thinking exactly this myself. With the amount of rain that we get here in the winter why should we need to water at all. The recommended amount of water it .75 to 1 inch per week. I would guess that we get at least that much on average from June through September.

Last summer our irrigation was turned off from mid-June thru mid-October because of the rainfall. In the winter if we get a healthy rain day we don't water that week.

Average rainfall in Ocala during June thru Sept is over 6" each month; rest of the year it is about 3" each month.

.
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