I’m not big on watering. I don’t like the fact that I have to supplement nature. Plus I’m lazy. But, I’ve come to realize it’s a necessary evil. We put in a cactus garden in our old house with a rock base and the temperatures coming off there were scorching. Like actually scorching the undersides of the cactus in some cases. Like you couldn’t walk across it to weed after 7am or you could feel the heat coming up through the soles of your shoes. Obviously just covering your yard with rocks is not ideal. It’s only one step removed from concrete. As much as the idea appeals to me.
Our new house came with some beautiful, well established grass. The backyard in particular is wonderful. You can walk on it in bare feet which I think everyone who lives in Texas can agree is a ridiculous ideal that no one actually believes is possible. I feel responsible to this soft grass to take care of it and not kill it through neglect.
I’ve got the front yard on a timer and it works well. I don’t even have to think about it. Well, it woke up Stella last week so I had to change its time a bit, but mostly I don’t have to think about it.
The old homeowners recommended the rain train for the backyard. The idea behind it is that you lay out the hose in the path you want the train to take across your backyard. The water coming through the hose propels the train across your hose “track”. It does this slowly and evenly watering the whole back yard. This has turned out to be very nice. It waters quite evenly. My backyard is a long strip. My guess is that to water it using a traditional spinkler I’d have to move it at least 3 times. That’s not going to happen. The rain train does require that I lay out its track and turn it on and off. But I don’t have to remember to move it at regularly spaced intervals. I know that with a traditional sprinkler I’d end up with one really nice green section, one sorta brown section, and one completely dead section. I know my limitations.
So I’m happy with the rain train. It’s pricey, but worth it if you’re unable to remember to move a sprinkler like I am. Plus you get to sing “get on the rain train.. rain train” (to the tune of “Love Train”) all day.
Someday, I do plan on migrating the front yard to a cultivated prairie. But I think I’ll keep the backyard grass. It is nice to do my morning sit-ups in, Stella can run across it barefoot, and it is awfully nice for a nap.
I’ll keep it as long as it can withstand only being watered twice weekly by the rain train in this hot, hot summer. It’s doing good so far.