Adjusting Flex Schedule Depletion Level for Climate with Inconsistent Rain Forecast

Hi @franz, Saw your message about trying to weight the forecast differently. What percentage would you recommend I set my depletion given the nature of our region. I just want to get closer to a 3-4 day interval in this type of heat. Perhaps 30-35% I don’t want to change my equation so heavily it goes every other day. Here is the current climate situation that caused my lawn to start to heavily stress. (Being on vacation didn’t help my cause):

I’m 20 miles west of Boston. From about June 28th to current we had a drought. High 80’s to High 90’s. Our forecast called for a chance of thunderstorms daily during this time frame and these never materialized. Happened for about 7-10 straight days. I assume, looking at my chart that everyday it didn’t rain, things were adjusted for forecasted rain that didn’t occur again the next day. Is it safe to assume I was caught in a Catch 22 and the extra recalculation delays caused issue? Flex averaged watering every 5-7 days. We maybe got 4 good rain events in that time frame, but they were well spaced out every few weeks. I started to repair stress by switching back to Fixed Schedule every 3 days for 3 waterings and having the landscaper skip a mowing. Now back to Flex.

Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated. I want to keep using Flex, but clearly I need to be more proactive in my fine tuning. Trying to continue to green the lawn up and keep it that way! Still loving the product!



Continuing the discussion from MAD not working properly:

@brilliant, good morning. Thanks for reaching out. @franz is out of the office today, but I’d be happy to help with your question. Assuming you’re still using the default MAD setting of 50%, I would reduce your turf zones to 40% and reevaluate the schedule. I’d try to stay above 30% if possible. General rule of thumb is that for most landscape purposes, 50% MAD represents a reasonable overall value; For sensitive, shallow rooted plants, or heavy compacted soils, a smaller depletion should be considered (30-50% MAD). For stress-tolerant plants, deep root zones or lighter soils, a larger depletion can be used (50-70% MAD). Therefore, the long term risk of using a lower MAD setting is that it doesn’t increase your lawn’s endurance by promoting deeper roots. With that said, you might want to double check your root zone depth for each zone and adjust the root depth in your advanced settings if it doesn’t match the actual depths you’re measuring.

To fine tune your flex schedules, I’d recommend reviewing these attributes if you haven’t done so already:

I hope this helps :smile:

Best, Emil