Sled-Base Lawn Sprinklers
Sled bases are typical for oscillating sprinklers and work well if you anticipate needing to move the sprinkler a lot, either to adjust coverage or to allow mowing. They usually feature a couple of runners that rest on the ground, but you can also find sprinklers with wheels. Both types make it easy to adjust or move the sprinkler simply by pulling the garden hose it's attached to.
Sled bases are best for level terrain. You may have difficulty getting a sled-base sprinkler to water evenly if it's on a slope.
There are several types of rotating sprinklers.
-One type features two or more arms that spin, casting water in a circular pattern.
-A more decorative design has a spinning ring with nozzles that spray water.
-You can also find compact rotating or rotary sprinklers that look like a sprinkler head on an underground sprinkler system.
Rotating sprinklers can irrigate a fairly large area. They're more suitable for new plantings than impulse sprinklers, but some models have watering patterns that aren't very precise. You may waste some water on areas such as sidewalks and driveways if you're not careful with your irrigation.
Lawn Sprinkler Watering Tips
Knowing when and how to water your lawn helps you use your sprinklers efficiently, giving your grass the water it needs and minimizing wasted water.
How Do I Know My Lawn Needs Water?
If, after you walk on the lawn, the blades don't spring back quickly, your lawn needs supplemental water. A dull look to the grass is another indication of a lack of water.
Tip: Healthy cool-season grasses may go dormant and turn brown during the summer months and only need about 1/2 inch of water every 2 to 3 weeks to stay alive. Once temperatures cool off, they'll green up again and you can resume normal watering.
When Should You Water a Lawn or Garden?
It's best to water your lawn in the morning, at least a few hours before noon. This gives the water time to drain into the ground before the heat of the afternoon cause it to evaporate. This practice is especially useful in hot, dry conditions or climates.
If you need to water in the afternoon or evening, make sure you allow a couple of hours for the grass or plants to dry before dark. If the plants remain wet into the night, there's a greater chance of disease developing.
Tip: Make watering with a sprinkler easier and more efficient by using a hose-end timer. From mechanical timers that control one hose to digital, smart-compatible models that let you set up multiple watering zones, you can find a timer that works for your irrigation needs.
How Much Water Does a Lawn Need?
An established lawn needs from 1 inch to 1-1/2 inches of water per week. Ideally, this will be a combination of rainfall and supplemental watering with a sprinkler. In general, it's best to water thoroughly two or three times a week, but timing may depend on your soil type.
If you've just seeded a new lawn, you'll need to irrigate lightly each day to keep the top layer of soil moist until the grass is established and developing strong roots.
How Does Soil Affect Watering?
There are three basic types of soil. Each has a different irrigation need.
-Sandy soil drains quickly. Plants in sandy soil need water more frequently than those in other types. You may want to split your irrigation over several days.
-Clay soil holds water well. Plants in clay soil won't need water as often as those in sandy soil. You can apply supplemental water once a week, but don't overwater.
-Loam is a blend of silt, organic material and clay. It has a good balance of drainage and water retention. You can divide the supplemental water over a couple of days each week.