Summer Tips for South Florida Lawns
Summertime presents some of the toughest lawn care issues in South Florida. Typically, the high heat, and the lack of water. These problems are made worse by the watering restrictions imposed in most areas. The first thing you need to do is learn the local laws from the City, State and county when it comes to water use and develop a plan to work within them to develop deep roots and a heat-tolerant lawn. Choosing the right grass plants and providing conscientious year-round lawn care will help your lawn become more heat tolerant.
Selecting the proper heat and drought tolerant grass is very important because not all grasses can stand up to the heat of South Florida summers. Common grasses used are St. Augustine grass, Zoysia grass, Bahia grass and Bermuda grass which are all heat tolerant and well suited for South Florida heat. You should always consult with a local professional when choosing a grass for your area and yard.
Water is also a big issue in South Florida because of the hot, dry weather and watering restrictions. Grass needs frequent watering during the hot summer months. The only good news is that summer is generally the rainy season. A good strategy is to water only when necessary, but unfortunately, this isn’t always possible due to assigned watering days. Watering deeply and less frequently encourages the roots to grow deeper and helps the plant tolerate drought and heat better. The best time to water is in the morning when the plants are actively taking in water. In the heat of the day, more water evaporates and at night the water stays on the foliage longer and may lead to fungal diseases. Give the lawn approximately 3/4 inch of water in the morning once a week. Water twice a week during the hottest parts of the summer. A good indicator is to look for your footprints when you walk across the lawn. If your footprints are visible, the lawn needs water.