How much Water does a good healthy lawn REALLY need?

 With all the Dry weather around, and so many peoples lawns browning off, a lot of people are left using How much water does my lawn need! Thats why this week I am taking my guidance from Turf Australia about how much water we need in our area.

Sometimes lawns, or natural turf, is criticised for using too much water.  What can we do to minimise water use on lawns and sporting fields? What are the benefits of having lawns and natural grass sporting fields and do they outweigh the disadvantages?

Australian and international research has found that:

  • The majority of home owners do not know how much water a heathy lawn needs.
  • Overwatering of lawns and sporting fields is common.
  • Many new turf varieties use significantly less water.
  • There are a number of water saving practices and technologies now available.

So, How much water does my lawn need?

It may surprise you to learn that many turf species, in particular warm season turf varieties, have been proven to be water wise.

In Australia, warm season turf species represent 90 per cent of the turf produced and available. The main Australian warm season turf species include; Soft Leaf Buffalo, Couch, Kikuyu and Zoysia. There are many different varieties of each of these species available.

A study by Western Sydney University con rmed that warm season turf needs about the same amount of water as native plants, and considerably less than exotic garden plants. In addition, a study carried out in Texas, in the United States (US), showed that warm season turf can survive without any water for up to 60 days during Summer and return to health within two months after receiving water. So don’t despair your lawn will come back. Especially the Coastal Turf varieties.

In another US study, once established Soft Leaf Buffalo was shown to use the same amount, or less, water as native landscape gardens. Although, it did take three years for the Soft Leaf Buffalo to become fully established and use the same amount of water as the native landscape gardens. In the fourth year, however, the native landscape gardens used more than double the amount of water compared to the Soft Leaf Buffalo – no doubt contributed to by the, now, larger size of the shrubs within the native gardens.

• East coast (Melbourne to Brisbane): weekly watering during Summer and Spring, with twice a week needed on soils that are sandy or shallow.


  • Establishing a lawn in Australia

    Turf that has just been laid needs frequent watering for the rst seven to 14 days, possibly up to two or three times a day if in full sun. Remember, watering can include rainfall and less water is required for shaded areas.

    Once established though, a lawn in full sun consisting of Couch, Kikuyu, Soft Leaf Buffalo or Zoysia would typically require weekly watering during Summer and Spring, with twice a week needed on soils that are sandy or shallow. Again, note that watering can include rainfall and less water is required for shaded lawns.


    How can I reduce the water required by my lawn?

    As mentioned above, different turf species and varieties have different watering needs.  Couch varieties have been shown to use 38 per cent less water than existing varieties and Australian native turf varieties are now available.

    Queensland Blue Couch, Carpet Grass, most Soft Leaf Buffalo’s, Zoysia’s and Tall Fescue varieties are known to be more water efficient than alternatives, with many being region specific. At Coastal Turf we can recommend the most suitable low water use species for your climate and soil type.

    Visit www.turfaustralia.com.au for more information.

Chat soon Guys