When it comes to watering and water management, the old formulas and standards that got us through the drought years aren’t of much use. Forget about what was necessary before, and take a completely new approach to the idea of watering your landscape. What we’re experiencing now is wet weather of massive proportions.
Durant Ashmore, landscape contractor of Fountain Inn, South Carolina, can tell with a quick glance whether or not a yard has an irrigation system. “It’s only a matter of whether the yard looks good or not,” he says.
For the past 15 years, the formula for watering an established landscape was to water every second or third day. Many factors come into play, and irrigation systems can be tweaked and modified for any number of specific cases, but in general, this has been the rule.
“Now that things have changed and the drought is over, we need to change the approach,” says Ashmore. “In fact, it has been hardly necessary for a property owner to turn on an irrigation system this year, because of the regular rain we have had. Those who have not irrigated at all have not suffered.”
The key here is just to watch the weather. A simple rule to follow is to water every day the temperature reaches 90 degrees, and every other day when the temperature stays below about 85. Ashmore suggests not turning on irrigation for an established landscape until you absolutely have to.