February is a hot, dry month in the Western Cape, but if you use water wisely you can have a beautiful green lawn, without a hefty water bill.
Follow these waterwise tips for a lush summer lawn :
- Raise the height of your mower blades to about 5cm in mid-summer. Longer grass helps to shade the soil and keep the roots cool.
- Water early in the mornings so that your lawn can benefit from all the water, and you don’t lose any to evaporation or strong winds (which tend to peak in the late afternoon).
- Water deeply (about 15 minutes per sprinkler setting) twice a week rather than watering for shorter periods more frequently. Deep watering encourages the development of deep, healthy roots
- Make sure that your hose pipe, as well as its fittings and nozzles are all in good shape, so that you don’t lose water through leakages.
- A well designed irrigation system can help you save water if it is used well. It spreads water more evenly than manual watering and you can set the time and frequency in advance.
- Use a hollow-tine fork to aerate very dry and hard patches of your lawn. This will improve water penetration and retention in these areas.
- Buffalo grass requires far less water and mowing than the kikuyu types. Consider planting buffalo grass in areas of your garden where it is very challenging to keep the lawn green and lush. Add plenty of water retaining granules to the soil before planting new grass.