Our prolonged dry conditions have caused many West Michigan lawns to turn brown.  Brown lawns don't look as nice as green ones, but the look of your lawn may not be the only thing to be concerned about.

If your lawn is too dry it can become a fire hazard, and if it goes too long without any water, it could die.

Keeping your grass long will help to protect your lawn from the hot sun.  It's also a good idea to avoid stressing the lawn with weed killers when conditions are so hot and dry.

Completely dry lawns can die, but it takes time.  WZZM reports that lawns which have gone 4-6 weeks without any water are in danger.

If you want to keep your lawn green, it isn't going to be cheap.  WZZM did some calculations to give us an idea of the actual cost:

On average, a lawn needs one inch of water per week -- or about 0.623 gallons per square foot. If you have a 3,000 square foot lawn -- which is the size we're using for our comparison -- you need about 1,869 gallons of water each week.

In the city of Grand Rapid, the combined costs of water and sewer are about $6.99 for each 1,000 gallons of water used. Based on the comparison, it would cost about $13.06 per week or $52 a month to water a 3,000 sq. ft. lawn.

In Rockford, water and sewer charges are about $5.96 per 1,000 gallons. For our 3,000 sq. ft. lawn, it would be about $11.14 a week or $46 a month for watering.

In Byron Center, water and sewer charges are $5.10 per 1,000 gallons -- or $9.53 a week or $38 a month for the 3,000 sq. ft. lawn

If you haven't done any watering yet, now may be the time to start.  Try to get your lawn at least enough water to help keep your property safe from fire risk and to keep your lawn alive.