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UW officials offer tips on keeping your lawn healthy in a drought

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A man mows grass in front of a drought stricken corn field in Welton, Iowa July 12, 2012. REUTERS/Adrees Latif
A man mows grass in front of a drought stricken corn field in Welton, Iowa July 12, 2012. REUTERS/Adrees Latif

MARSHFIELD, Wis. (WSAU) – UW officials are offering some advice on how to keep your yard alive during the continuing drought.

Despite some scattered rain showers yesterday many people are looking at brown lawns, But Wood County extension agent Peter Manley says most grass cover is pretty tough. “If they're looking at it and wanting to just keep it alive, but brown, they should only need about a quarter of an inch a week.” If your grass is brown and beginning to get “crunchy” underfoot, you may want to water it one inch per week. Limiting traffic on the grass will also help it survive.

Manley says that more recent tree planting will need more attention. “Those will not survive this real dry weather if you don't water them, and they'll need an inch or a good soaking every week.” To soak your tree, you will need to turn your garden hose on low and let it run at the base of the tree for more than an hour. Native flowers that have been established for several years will likely survive the drought because of their deep roots.

You can get more tips on the drought and how to survive it online at http://fyi.uwex.edu/drought2012.

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