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Turfgrass does not need anything like three hours of water every other day and in fact I strongly suspect that many people are overwatering so much that their grass is suffering from nutrient leaching. Given that much/most of the soil on the Bench and Sage Mesa is high in clay content as well, overwatering just causes puddling and compaction, especially if large animals are on it.

I suggest that people put out small cans (tuna, cat food) and check how much water their lawns and pastures are actually getting. Check the internet and you'll find that overwatering is consistently noted as a more serious problem than underwatering. Here's a bit from one website.

"One inch a week is the standard water requirement established for most lawns; however, this will vary between different turf species and even among cultivars within a specie. There will also be varying water requirements for seasonal changes and still more differences brought about because of different soil type.

Look at your lawn to determine its water needs. Grass in need of water will have a grey-blue cast to it, rather than a blue-green or green color. Also, foot prints will still appear after a half-hour or more on a lawn in need of water, while on a well watered lawn foot-prints will completely disappear within minutes.

Use a soil probe, such as a screwdriver or large spike to determine how dry your lawn is. If the probe can be pushed into the soil easily, it's probably still moist, but if it takes a lot of pressure to push in, it's time to water.

Verify watering quantities with the same measuring can method described above [in the site, but as I (Eva) noted also above], except you will want to note the time it takes for the cans to collect a specific amount of water. For example, if 0.5 cm (0.25-inches) collects in 30 minutes, you can easily calculate that it will take one hour to apply 1 cm (0.5-inches) of water or two hours to apply 2.5 cm (1-inch)."

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