By Chris Spears

DENVER (CBS4) – Do I need to water my yard when it’s this dry in Colorado during the fall and winter? If you want to ensure your trees, shrubs, perennials and grass maintain healthy root systems and thrive next spring, then the answer is yes.

According to a variety of sources, including Colorado State University Extension, fall and winter watering during pro-longed dry periods will help your landscape stay healthy. Newly planted grass, trees, plants and shrubs are most susceptible to damage but established landscapes need a good drink of water too.

You only need to water about two times a month, unless your location is particularly sunny and windy. Those weather conditions can dry the landscape even more so than simply not having the normal values of rain or snow. Be sure to only water when both the air and soil temperatures are at or above 40°F and there is no snow cover on the ground.

If you are curious about how to find soil temperatures, there are some weather stations around Colorado that measure and report this data, including the historic CSU weather station in Fort Collins. You can explore Colorado’s CoAgMet website by clicking here.

You will want to water during the middle part of the day so the water doesn’t freeze and don’t turn on your irrigation system, instead, water by hand. If you use a sprinkler attached to the end of your garden hose make sure it is on a setting that will allow the water to come out slowly so that it soaks into the ground. Don’t forget to disconnect the hose from your house when you are finished because most areas of Colorado drop to or below freezing at night during the fall and winter.

Chris Spears