Growing Healthy Bermudagrass is in Arizona Requires These 3 Steps…
There is an obvious difference between alive and healthy bermudagrass. Bermudagrass, in all of its varieties, will stay alive regardless of sun or rain… or more sun. Bermudagrass tends to deal with excessive heat by drying out, turning brown and becoming dormant. If you’ve noticed this in your lawn, the good news is that it can be revived with a little effort. If you want to keep your summer lawn thick, green and vibrant, then there are a few things your grass will need from you:
If you’re not watering your lawn, it’s not going to look very appealing. Grass needs water, not just to spread, but to withstand the heat. If the grass doesn’t have water it won’t put its limited resources into its leaves for photosynthesis, it will keep what energy it has for basic life support. Take off your shoes and walk barefoot through a lawn that is in life support mode, I think I’d rather walk barefoot through the rocks! If you want to enjoy a nice green lawn, water is the first and most important step. We recommend 30 minutes of water in the coolest hours, three times a week. If you notice that your ground is getting too muddy and not absorbing quickly enough, you can split the watering into two 15 min stages, you might also need to have your lawn aerated.
Aeration can make a big difference in your lawn here in Arizona. Most of our soils in Arizona are heavy with clay. The clay tends to compact and squeeze out the air pockets, especially where children and pets are involved. Without underground pockets of air, there is little space for water absorption or root growth, not to mention the oxygen that the roots themselves need. Aeration is the process of pulling two inch long plugs of dirt out of the ground to give the roots the space to grow. Aeration also breaks up the layer of thatch (dry or dormant layer of grass) caused by infrequent watering. Without aeration, thatch can choke new growth and block water and fertilizer from penetrating into the soil.
Feeding your lawn is essential to growing healthy bermudagrass and fortunately, it doesn’t take a lot of work. Like I mentioned before, the soil here in Arizona is clay based and tends to squeeze everything good out, especially in traffic areas. Fertilizing your lawn puts the essential food back into the ground for your grass to feed on. This is especially productive after aeration when the water and fertilizer don’t have to fight through thatch and dense clay to get directly to the root system. Fertilizer is easy to come by, make sure that you pick the right one for bermudagrass and the time of year. You need to pay attention to the levels of nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, which are usually displayed on the bag like this (21- 7- 14). This is a good example of the numbers you will need here in the valley.
These tips will help you grow beautiful, healthy bermudagrass by strengthening your lawn, giving it deeper roots and making it much more comfortable and attractive.