These watering guidelines are designed for landscapes in Tucson, AZ but should also work well for low desert regions of Southern Arizona. Plants need less water during cool or rainy weather. Additional water is needed for new plants or during unusually hot or dry weather. Water to the outer edge of the plant’s canopy and to the depth indicated.
Landscape Watering Guidelines
|Plant Type Native & high water use plants in Tucson, AZ||Seasonal Frequency shows days between watering||Depth how deeply|
|Trees||Native/desert adapted trees||14-30 days||7-21 days||14-30 days||30-60 days||24-36 inches|
|High water use trees||7-12 days||7-10 days||7-12 days||14-30 days||24-36 inches|
|Shrubs||Native/desert adapted shrubs||14-30 days||7-21 days||14-30 days||30-45 days||18-24 inches|
|High water use shrubs||7-10 days||2-7 days||7-10 days||10-14 days||18-24 inches|
|Ground Covers||Native/desert adapted plants||14-30 days||7-21 days||14-30 days||21-45 days||8-12 inches|
|High water use ground covers||7-10 days||2-5 days||7-10 days||10-14 days||8-12 inches|
|Cacti and Succulents||21-45 days||14-30 days||21-45 days||only if needed||8-12 inches|
|Annuals||1-2 days||daily water||1-2 days||2-3 days||8-12 inches|
|Warm Season Grass||1-2 days||daily water||1-2 days||15-30 days||6-10 inches|
|Cool Season Grass||2-7 days||none||2-7 days||3-10 days||6-10 inches|
The term “established” refers to the point at which a newly planted tree, shrub, accent, or ground cover begins to produce new growth. New growth appears as fresh foliage or new stems. Typically, a shrub will become well established after one year with a fully developed root system. Trees require up to three years to become fully established. New plantings need to be watered more frequently than established plants. The schedule below offers general watering guidelines to help new plants get established.
|Watering Schedule for New Plants in Tucson, AZ|
|Weeks 1 – 2||Water new plants every 1-2 days in the summer and every 3-4 days fall – spring|
|Weeks 3 – 4||Water new plants every 3-4 days in the summer and every 6-7 days fall – spring|
|Weeks 5 – 6||Water new plants every 4-6 days in the summer and every 7-10 days fall – spring|
|Weeks 7 – 8||Water new plants every 7 days during the summer and every 10-14 days fall – spring|
|After 8 Weeks||Gradually extend the time between irrigations until plants begin to produce new growth|
Over half of household water goes into our landscapes in Tucson, AZ. Watering your plants efficiently is one of the best ways to save water. Proper watering will not only keep your landscape plants healthy but will also reduce your monthly water bill.