Help Your NY Landscape Survive Drought
Majestic Lawn Care and Landscape Proudly Serving Rockland County, NY and Bergen County, NJ for 25 Years
The dog days of summer are upon the Hudson Valley. And those dry, hot days are taking a toll on your lawn and landscapes. Your grass looks brown and dead; your shrubs and trees’ leaves are turning brown and falling. Your flowers’ blooms aren’t lasting long and your container plants are shriveled.
Dealing with Drought
Don’t be dismayed. If you’ve installed low maintenance plants—especially native ones—they will survive this dry spell. Additionally, your lawn isn’t dead—it just went into dormancy. So things will recover when normal rainfall returns.
In the meantime, here are some tips to use during this dry spell:
- Follow your municipality’s watering schedule. If your town mandates that you can only water your lawn and gardens on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays, from 6 p.m. to 9 a.m., make sure you follow that schedule to avoid water fines. Yet, you can use those watering days to your advantage.
- On the days that you’re allowed to water your landscapes, make sure that you give them a good soaking of 1-1 ½” of water. Your plants will survive this drought if their roots are allowed to grow deep into the soil.
- If you have a sprinkler system, get it recalibrated so you can control the timing and the amount of water used on your lawn and landscapes. Also, you want to get your irrigation heads and water lines checked so your plants are getting the right amount of water at the right time.
- Don’t fertilize your lawn or landscaped beds. Right now, your yard grass has gone into dormancy and you’ll end up burning your lawn with fertilizer. Your plants, again, are using all of their resources to get enough water from deep in the soil. Fertilizer encourages more energy and resources to quickly grow above ground. Allow your garden plants to rest during this stressful time.
Prepare for Next Summer’s Drought
Once it starts to rain again and the temperatures cool heading into early fall, it’s a good time to prepare for next year’s drought. Here are six things you can do to transform your lawn and landscapes into drought-tolerant spaces:
- Plant low maintenance plants. Ornamental grasses, natives, and other plant materials naturally can handle dry, hot conditions.
- Install a sprinkler system. Today’s irrigation systems not only save you money in the long run, but will help keep your lawn and landscape alive during water restrictions.
- Plant grass seed that is drought tolerant. Each year, there’s new grass seed developed to handle climate stresses, including periods of drought.
- Plant in hydrozones. Your property is not uniform when it comes to temperature and moisture. Some areas will be drier and others moister. Group plants that can handle drier soil and full sun together and group shade-loving plants that don’t mind wet feet in boggier areas.
- Add water conservation features on your property. Rain barrels, rain gardens, dry bed streams and swales all help to maintain water during heavy rainfall. You can also use water from rain barrels to irrigate your flower beds.
- Make your fall core aeration and fertilization appointment now. Your lawn’s soil is probably compacted after a lot of summer foot traffic, dry conditions and clay soil. Aeration will help it loosen up.
At Majestic Lawn Care and Landscape, Inc., we can help you recalibrate your irrigation system as well as prepare your landscapes for next year’s drought.
If you live in Rockland County, NY or Bergen County, NJ, schedule your next water-saving landscape project today by calling us at (845)708-2988 or by filling out our contact form.
LoveYourLandscape.org, “Harnessing H2O: Making Every Drop Count.”