Keeping your grass healthy

Healthy grass

Once your warm season grass is established, you will be able to start enjoying its lower maintenance and water requirements. As it thrives in very different conditions to cool season grass, it’s important that you understand just how little water is needed to keep it healthy.

Learn how to care for your new grass by following the steps below.

Beware of over watering – it encourages poor summer performance

After the 28-day establishment period your new grass will need significantly less water than what was required during its establishment. Do not be tempted to continue the same watering regime as it is likely to damage the lawn’s health.

Over watering keeps the top layer of soil wet, encouraging grass to develop weak, shallow roots – the kind that are easily damaged in hot, dry weather. It will require more frequent mowing and can also contribute to the development of disease and weeds. Infrequent but deep watering provides the best results.

In Melbourne, the watering needs of your warm season grass can be met through sporadic summer storms / rainfall and – in the peak of summer – several cycles of washing machine water a week.

Common signs of over watering include water running off the lawn onto driveways, paths or gardens; a mushy feeling when you walk on the lawn and the presence of moss and algae.

Know the signs – understanding when your warm season grass needs water

Walk across your grass, are your steps leaving visible footprints more than 5-10 seconds later or is the lawn taking on a blue-gray tint? If so, then your warm season grass may benefit from some additional water.

To be sure, look at the individual blades of grass. Do they seem to have closed / curled up a little or do the blades seem to be narrower in width or wilting? This is another indication that your grass may benefit from some additional water.

It is important to note that your grass is highly likely to survive without the application of any additional water – as this is what warm season grass is able to do.

Remember, grass / lawns cannot be watered using a watering system outside of allowed watering times EXCEPT during your 28-day warm season grass establishment. If you want to water outside of the prescribed times after this time period, you can water by hand using a hose fitted with a trigger nozzle or use an alternative water source such as tank, recycled, grey or bore water.