1. SPRINKLER AUDITS – It is very important that you do an audit on your sprinkler system. This means that you place out some catch cups (eg, aerosol caps) and run your system. You then measure how much water you have in each cup. If you have approx 20mm then you will get your 40mm per week over two watering days. If you have less (or sometimes none) you need to check your system for damaged, blocked sprinklers or busted pipes. You need to check which way your nozzles are adjusted and if you need to add more sprinklers if your pressure has changed. This audit is the most important thing you can do for your turf as most brown, dry patches
on your lawns are caused by faulty retic systems and not pests such as black beetle. If your lawn has dry spots no amount of fertiliser or pesticide solutions will make it wet!
2. WETTING AGENT – Secondly you need to give your lawn a good quality wetting agent like Baileys Gro Sorb or Soil Soak. This might seem unnecessary, especially if there is still some rain around. This however is when you should apply a wetting agent, before the ground gets a chance to dry out and become anti wetting. It is much easier to keep moisture in the soil then to try and re wet it once it had dried out. This may need to be repeated 2 or 3 times over the season.
3. FERTILISER –Last but not least it is time to apply a fertiliser. This should be done lightly and regularly every six weeks. Doing it lightly and regularly will keep the turf healthy without giving you the growth flushes. Encouraging massive growth flushes is detrimental to the health of your turf as it causes the turf to thatch up and puts stress on the plant when it is cut down to below green leaf level (scalping). The idea of an accurate fertilising program is to keep the plant healthy with a steady growth pattern. Fertilising now will encourage a strong sward that will help it cope with heat stress and a healthy strong lawn is better at resisting weeds, diseases and pests.
Regular mowing at 20 – 25 mm is the ideal height.