Should I Water My Lawn This Winter? The short answer is yes!
The past few weeks have been extremely dry! Though we received enough moisture throughout the growing season to stay out of drought conditions, it is going to be important to maintain the health of your lawn with watering. Many homeowners lost parts of their lawn in recent years due to what is called “winter desiccation” (dries out and dies from lack of moisture) and Mite damage. Mites and winter drought together cause winter kill.
Mites attack turf grass in Southern Colorado at an unexpectedly rapid rate. During dry winter and spring months from December through May, these tiny, destructive pests are not visible, but are actively feeding on your lawn. There are a few different species of Spider Mites that attack lawns in Colorado. Read more here from CSU.
The most crucial step in suppressing winter mite activity is to water during the winter and spring seasons. This is especially important on south and west areas that receive direct sun, and on the south and west side of evergreen trees and shrubs.
- Several species of spider mites can damage turfgrass in Colorado: clover mite, Banks grass mite and brown wheat mite.
- Most damage occurs during early to midspring.
- Damage to turfgrass is primarily related to dry conditions and turfgrass stressed by drought.
- Clover mites can be a serious nuisance pest when they enter buildings in spring.
- Banks grass mite is the most difficult species of mite to control in turfgrass.
- If left alone, spring clover mite problems will end on their own by the end of May.
- Clover mites are considered cool-season mites, in contrast to many other spider mites that cause greatest damage during warm months.
Since mite damage occurs during the months where most people aren;’working in their yards. Homeowners owners in Colorado still need to water trees, shrubs and their lawns to make sure they survive the cold months. The combination of winter watering will reduce mites, minimize of winter kill and make your lawn look great when summer comes! Stay Warm!