Sure signs. Before watering your plants, look for signs of wilt or if leaves curl. Your lawn needs water when the grass blades fold in, or you can see your footprints when you walk on it.
Get some sense. Place an inexpensive rain gauge in an open area so you can tell you how much rain your yard received, then supplement only if needed. Installing a moisture sensor will also help you know what’s happening at the root level where moisture is most important.
Supervise your sprinklers. If you have an in-ground irrigation system, make sure none of your sprinklers heads are broken. Check on the sprinklers to make sure you’re not accidentally watering the sidewalk or driveway. Keep water restrictions in mind when you set your timer and irrigate early in the morning so the water doesn’t evaporate in the heat of the day. Install a rain sensor if your system doesn’t have one already. Make sure the sensor is pointed up so it can detect when it has rained and prevent your system from coming on.
Indulge. When you do water, give your landscape a good, long drink (one-half to three-quarters inch per application). Your plant and grass roots will grow deeper and stronger than they would if you used less water more frequently. Healthier plants with deep roots need far less water and are much more resistant to disease and pests.