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Even though your lawn turns brown and goes dormant on the top side, the roots continue to grow and develop all through the Winter. That is why it's so important to do a Fall application of fertilizer right before you turn off your sprinklers and it goes dormant for the Winter. Usually in October or early November some time. When you stop watering and the night time temps are consistently below freezing for 2 weeks straight, your lawn will go dormant. The only thing you need to do all through the Winter for your lawn is water it during the long dry periods of no rain or snow. How much should you water? I would pull out your garden hose and really soak it for like an hour at least once a month through these periods. The other benefit of th Fall application or Winterizer application is it helps your lawn to green up earlier the following Spring. It helps to have available nitrogen built up in the soil which is taken up through the roots when the soil temps are warm enough and there's enough moisture available.