It's not so much about WHEN you can water, but whether you NEED to water.
Here are some measures to take responsibility at home to conserve our water and preserve our resources for future generations.
For the exterior of the home in lawns & garden
1. Plant drought-resistant lawns, shrubs and plants. Replace herbaceous perennial plants with native plants, which use less water. Group your plants according to their watering needs. See the EPA WaterSense Efficient Landscaping Guide for more suggestions.
2. Put a layer of mulch around trees and plants. This will slow evaporation of moisture. Adding 2-4 inches of organic material will increase the ability of the soil to retain moisture.
3. Don't water the gutter. Position sprinklers so water lands on the lawn, not paved areas. Call the Town for an irrigation check if you have any doubt!
4. Water your lawn only when it needs it. A good way to check to see if your lawn needs watering is to step on the grass. If it springs up when you move, it doesn't need water.
5. Water during the early part of the day; avoid watering when it is windy. This watering time will reduce water loss due to evaporation.
6. Check for leaks. Leaks outside may not be as visible, but are still as wasteful.
Helpful Website for Lawn Watering: Water my Yard
The Water My Yard website was created by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension and designed to provide homeowners guidance on when and how much to water to use for their landscaping.
Residents and business owners who don’t know the precipitation rate can calculate it by answering a few questions about their type of sprinkler system or conducting a catch-can test. If that test cannot be completed to achieve the greatest accuracy, use the number 0.75, which was determined using an oscillating sprinkler. Then, click on “Sign Up for Weekly Email” to begin receiving an email with watering recommendations.
Over 50% of landscape water is wasted due to over-watering, inefficient watering practices and/or broken or poorly maintained irrigation systems. Information from the Water my Yard website assists homeowners with water use estimates based on rainfall, temperature, and the type of irrigation system used for landscaping. Updated information is provided in the form of a weekly email that includes how much water is needed and an estimate of how long to run the sprinklers to achieve this amount of water.
For the interior of the home
Installing low-flow aerators, shower heads, tank banks and other water-saving devices is a very simple practice that can conserve water. Other things a home owner can do for water conservation include:
1. Check faucets, pipes and toilet for leaks. A small drip from a worn faucet washer can waste 20 gallons of water per day; larger leaks can waste hundreds of gallons.
2. Install water-saving shower heads and low-flow faucet aerators. Hot showers can use five to ten gallons every unneeded minute. A four minute shower uses approximately 20 to 40 gallons of water.
3. Use your dishwasher and clothes washer for full loads only. Energy Star rated washers use 35-50% less water and 50% less energy per load.
4. Turn off faucet while cleaning vegetables. Rinse them in a stoppered sink or pan of clean water.
5. Minimize the use of garbage disposals.