Wise use of water outdoors benefits every one of us
MURPHY (June 16, 2022) Water is a precious commodity that is irreplaceable. It is essential for all life, including our own. Because of that, it is incumbent on all of us to take some responsibility to conserve it, use it wisely, and minimize wasting any of it.
Conservation does not mean eliminating it completely, it means using it sensibly and intelligently. Watering our yards, the largest use of household water in the spring and summer, is essential for healthy lawns, landscapes, trees, and our homes’ foundations. Irrigation systems make that task easy and effortless.
However, indiscriminately setting our irrigation systems, essentially using the “set it and forget it” method, is detrimental to our overall conservation efforts. Here are some watering tips from officials with the City of Murphy’s Water Department.
- Sign up at www.WaterMyYard.org for recommendations on when and how much to water your lawn. This is a science-based service that takes several factors into consideration when developing its recommendations.
- Water before 10 a.m. and after 6 p.m. to minimize evaporation. The hottest part of the day is right after noon and lasts until the sun begins to recede. Watering during the heat decreases the effectiveness of the irrigation system.
- Run your sprinklers in short cycles and wait 30-45 minutes in between to allow your grass to absorb water and reduce runoff. Some lawns may need watering sessions to be split into two or more days. Remember, an inch of water a week is more than sufficient.
- Regularly check the irrigation heads on your sprinkler system to ensure they are watering your lawn, not your driveway, sidewalk, or street. A misdirected sprinkler head is doubly deficient. Not only is it wasting water, but it is depriving a portion of your lawn from obtaining it.
- Raise the mower blade height during summer and avoid cutting more than 1/3 of the leaf blade at one time to conserve water and reduce plant stress. Shaving your lawn is among the least helpful actions you can take.
- Check outside spigots, pipes and hoses for leaks, and repair or replace as needed. One drop per second can waste more than 3,000 gallons of water each year. Don’t disregard any leaks, regardless of size.
- Plant native and adapted plants to reduce the amount of water your landscape requires. There are many succulents and other types of native plants that add color to a landscape, while requiring little water. Check the rules of your homeowner association.
Finally, consider turning off the automatic timer on your system and using the manual run button. Many systems require only one touch to run the zones for a prescribed time. Consult your service manual or contact a professional for advice.
Questions, comments, and water system issues may be directed to Public Services Executive Administrative Assistant Bryce Gullatt at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 972-468-4378.