We’ve been dealing with dry spells and drought in San Antonio (and all of Texas) year after year. Unfortunately, increased drought and the expansion of dry areas in the United States don’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon. The good news is, there’s a way to make your lawn more drought-resistant. The key to a drought-resistant lawn is soil health. Growing drought-resistant grass is as easy as understanding soil health. Clean Air Lawn Care San Antonio is an expert in drought-resistant lawn care. We have a tried-and-true approach to keeping your lawn healthy even in dry conditions. Read on for more information on keeping grass healthy in drought. Or get in touch for more information about growing a healthy, drought-resistant lawn. Get a free estimate, here!
Healthy soil leads to drought-resistant grass. The University of Illinois extension explains, “Drought stress will occur faster on turf stands with poor soil conditions underneath. Soil compaction, clay fill, high pH, and generally poor conditions for root growth become very evident under stress conditions such as drought…work on improving rooting of the lawn grasses.” So how do you “improve rooting of the lawn grasses”? We lay it all out for you below.
Organic, natural treatments like the Clean Air Liquid Fertilizer and Clean Air Soil Builder work within a lawn’s soil to encourage healthy root growth and grass. These treatments contain essential nutrients for healthy root development, blade growth, and soil health. They also contain active microbes that are the building blocks to truly healthy soil. Without active soil microbes, it’s impossible to have healthy soil. Chemical and synthetic fertilizers and pesticides kill soil microbes and throw the soil health off-balance. This leads to unhealthy soil that can’t survive in dry, hot conditions or extended droughts. Avoiding chemical fertilizers and pesticides is the key to growing drought-resistant grass.
Applying compost topdressing is another important part of growing drought-resistant grass. The idea behind getting a compost topdressing applied to your lawn is similar to staying up to date on your organic fertilizer treatments, but with a big bonus. The biggest benefit of compost topdressing is its organic matter. As opposed to liquid fertilizers, compost topdressing adds a layer of organic matter to your lawn. This organic matter is incredibly important to healthy soil and drought-resistant grass. Organic matter improves the consistency of your soil, adds important soil microbes, and feeds the overall soil life. All of this leads to a big boost in water and nutrient efficiency.
Getting your lawn aerated annually makes a big impact on its health and water efficiency. An annually aerated lawn is more water-efficient and drought-tolerant because water can penetrate to grass roots more efficiently. Aeration prevents soil compaction, which leads to poor water penetration, unhealthy grass, and a stressed lawn. Another benefit of lawn aeration is an increased uptake of nutrients, which is why it is wise to pair your aeration with a compost top dressing and/or liquid organic treatment. Get your lawn aeration at least once a year, or twice a year for optimum drought resistance.
Mowing high is a tried-and-true healthy lawn practice that Clean Air Lawn Care has been utilizing and preaching from the beginning. From our general approach to organic lawn care to our weed control method, you’ll find mentions of mowing high all over the website. That’s because mowing high is a simple, proven way to keep grass healthy and lush. Cutting grass too short stresses the grass, which decreases its water efficiency, health, and ability to withstand dry conditions.
Skip the bag and leave your clippings on the lawn! Leaving grass clippings on the lawn returns nutrients, moisture, and organic matter to the soil. Leaving grass clippings is a win-win for everyone; it reduces mowing time and waste, too!
As long as there are no water restrictions in your area during a drought, you can continue to water your lawn to keep it green and healthy through a dry spell. The key to watering grass is to water deeply and infrequently. Deep, infrequent watering will encourage strong, deep root growth. Stronger, deeper roots resist drought and damage because they can access water further down in the soil, where moisture is retained for longer periods of time than in the shallow top layer of soil.