May is typically a dry month....How to recognize DROUGHT STRESS
Turfgrass, like all green plants, must have water to grow. When there is insufficient rain, watering maintains turf growth and vigor.
Drought takes place when there is insufficient rainfall. A drought may extend for months or years. In Florida's sandy soils, drought symptoms may occur after only a few days without rain.
Without enough water from either rain or irrigation, turf starts saving water. This is visibly evident because grasses:
* Wilt by rolling or folding their leaf blades to prevent the loss of water.
*Do not grow new shoots until conditions are more conducive for growth. During a drought, leaf blades may die and fall off.
USE THE CORRECT AMOUNT OF WATER:
Water only when you see mild stress from drought. Folded leaf blades are one sign of this stress. Apply enough water to moisten the root area between 1/2 and 3/4 inch of water.
Make sure irrigation systems apply a uniform amount of water across entire lawns. Irrigationg daily for a few minutes is harmful to turfgrass. This method of irrigation actually promotes turfgrass disease development.
The optimal time to apply water is in the early morning hours between 2a.m. and 8 a.m. This helps reduce disease development.