The dreaded word “Drought.” Whether, it’s official or not, the reality is, we are in another drought. In California we are always going into a drought or coming out of a drought. No matter what your philosophy, here are some good water practices to follow.
Water during the cool parts of the day. Watering between 4 AM and 10 AM reduces evaporation and interference from wind and it helps prevent the growth of fungus.
Don’t water the gutter and sidewalk! Position your sprinklers in such a way that water lands on your lawn or garden, not on concrete, where it does no good. Avoid watering on windy days when much of your water may be carried off before it ever hits the ground. If you irrigate for 20 minutes and water is running into the gutter after 10 minutes, then water two 10 minute cycles. Remember concrete will not grow no matter how much you water it.
Don’t fertilize your lawn. Fertilizer increases plant growth. Then the plant needs more water and increases grass green waste.
Check for leaks in pipes, hoses, faucets and couplings. Leaks outside the house may not seem as unbearable, however they can be just as wasteful as leaks in the house: even the smallest drip from a worn washer can waste 50 or more gallons of water a day.
Water your lawn only when it needs it. A good way to see if your lawn needs water is to walk across the grass, turn around and do you see your footsteps on the grass? If the grass springs back, then it does not need water.
Your lawn can live on less water than we give it. Try irrigating once a week or maybe twice a week. If you have a Bermuda lawn, consider irrigating only once a month.
Place a layer of mulch around trees and plants. A layer of mulch will slow the evaporation of moisture.
Use a broom to clean driveways, sidewalks and steps. Using a hose to push around a few leaves and scraps of paper can waste hundreds and hundreds of gallons of water. Your Fitbit will congratulate you!
Check sprinkler and drip systems for problems. Our two and four- legged family can easily wreak havoc with the sprinkler system.