Water is the highest demanded resource across the world and will be for generations to come. It is important to conserve it as best as we can and use it as efficiently as possible.
Lawn watering strategies
Most homeowners are surprised to learn that more plants and shrubs die from over-watering than anything else. Sprinklers running throughout the day contribute to a large portion of water consumption annually. Do not exceed watering recommendations for plants and shrubs; if in doubt consult with your local nursery.
It's important not only to not overwater, but to water at the right times; take advantage of the cool and moist air during the early morning and late afternoon when watering the lawn. Due to the natural heat of the sun during the middle of the day, much of the water intended for the lawn will evaporate before it ever penetrates the soil. Watering in low wind conditions also improves efficiency.
Using rain water efficiently can also help lower the need for lawn sprinklers. The roof of a typical home captures more than 100,000 liters of rainwater a year. By capturing rainwater for reuse, you not only save water and lower your water bill, but you also decrease polluted urban runoff into local streams, bays and oceans. You can also help reduce local and downstream flooding.
Eco-friendly native vegetation landscapes
The use of native plants is on the rise across the country as more and more people are learning about the many benefits they bring. Because native plants are well adapted to their local environments, they tend to be low-maintenance in terms of gardening, landscaping and water usage.
Some additional benefits:
- Native plants provide wildlife with familiar sources of food and shelter.
- They can improve soil fertility, reduce erosion, and often require less pesticides and fertilizer than other outside plants.
- Maintain a properly functioning irrigation system that utilizes treated waste water or greywater.
- Adjust sprinklers to water only grass areas.
- Use soaker hoses or trickle-down hoses to water trees.
- Use moisture sensors on sprinklers.
- Use mulch around trees and shrubs to retain moisture.
- Raise cutting deck on lawnmower for longer blades of grass to hold moisture better.
- Eliminate fertilization, and install rain barrels.
- Eliminate water use when possible outdoors, when cleaning areas, and replacing or installing fixtures or infrastructure.
- Sweep or use a hand blower to clear paved areas.
- Use an automatic shut-off nozzle to control, when installing or using an ornamental water fountain.
- Use a permeable paving system when replacing driveways, parking lots, and sidewalks.