WATER EFFICIENCY / OUTDOOR USE
Outdoor water accounts for approximately 50 percent of our daily water use in the winter months and up to 70-80 percent during the summer. You can impact your use making changes to your irrigation settings and/ or your landscape material.
PLANTS AND SOIL
Use native plants or other vegetation that require little water.
Organize your plants into hydrozones. Hydrozones are areas of landscape that have similar water requirements.
Add mulch to prevent water loss through evaporation.
Plant turf grass only in areas where people will use it actively for recreation.
Reduce lawn area and plant drought tolerant, low water using plants. Rebate available
LAWN – WATERING
Cycle and Soak
One of the best ways to use water efficiently on your yard is to cycle and soak. Watering in increments gives soil time to soak up the necessary water and allow water to travel further into the soil where the grass roots are, creating a healthier lawn.
Using the scheduling features on an irrigation controller, add multiple start times and reduce each zone’s watering time. Allow for up to an hour between start times to allow for the last cycle of irrigation to soak into the soil. Water, rest, water.
For example, a 10-minute run time run may be irrigated for 5 minutes, turned off while the controller advances to irrigate another zone, then irrigated for the remaining 5 minutes to achieve the total 10-minute run time.
*Note – When setting your run times, ensure that no runoff occurs during the time that you are irrigating. If you have runoff, adjust your time and set up additional cycles if necessary.
Irrigate hydrozones based upon plants’ water needs.
Water in the morning or evening to prevent water loss due to evaporation. Avoid watering when it is windy.
Adjust sprinklers so they are not spraying water on paved surfaces such as the sidewalk or driveway.
Regularly inspect the sprinkler heads to make sure they are not damaged or malfunctioning.
Replace standard sprinkler heads with high efficiency nozzles. Rebate available
Install a weather-based SMART irrigation controller. Rebate available
Install and maintain a rain sensor on your existing controller.
If watering with a hose, make sure it has a shut-off nozzle.
Use a rain barrel to collect water for use in the landscape.
Add a graywater system to collect water from your washing machine and use it in your landscape.
Sweep outdoor surfaces with a broom.
Wash vehicles at a carwash that recycles water or if washing at home use a hose with a shut-off nozzle.
Cover your pool to reduce water loss through evaporation.