With virtually no snow pack so far this winter, Mark Osberg with Estate Landscape  has had several calls about whether or not to water your gardens. Mark sent out the email below :

These are my recommendations for the Tahoe and Truckee areas only, including Martis Camp. Lower elevation cities (Roseville, Cisco Grove, Reno, and Carson City) should be watering once or twice a month until there is regular precipitation.


Let’s look at the facts; all plants go dormant in the fall based on fewer sunlight hours and temperatures. So far fall and winter have been normal considering these factors.

It’s cold at night (at or below 25) and not much warmer during the day (30-40 degrees). And the amount of daylight hours are few as is normal at this time of year.


And the ground is frozen. Try sticking a shovel into the soil around your house. Hard! Any water applied will not penetrate the soil easily and could add a lot of time to the project. You would have to apply the water slow enough so it seeps into the ground.


A report from the Colorado State University states that if air and ground temperatures remain above 40 degrees, with no snow pack, then watering is advised. Once or twice a month. Depending on the plant type (how deep are their roots), applying 5 to 15 minutes of water is recommended.


“If conditions are this way how do I water?” you ask. If you have a sprinkler system you can use that.


But what if it has been winterized already? The only alternative is to hand water your lawn and/or gardens. This could be a big undertaking if you have a substantial landscape.

If you DO decide to hand water, don’t forget to remove the hose from the hose bib when you are done. You wouldn’t want any freeze damage done to the hose bib, and house, afterwards.


If the lack of snow persists, watering earlier in the Spring may be necessary. Let’s see what Mother Nature has in store for us, and then decide.


Here at Estate Landscape I am monitoring the weather conditions as closely in the Spring as I do in the Fall.

For those of you that are clients, rest assured I will be activating your systems for the best health of your landscape when it is time. Pray for snow!

Submitted By Mark Osberg, President of Estate Landscape.