Conserving Water In Your Landscape
Being cautious about water usage in the
garden is always a wise decision. Here are some
tips to save water outdoors:
- Ensure that your irrigation system is serviced and operating efficiently. Irrigation
systems should be properly prepared for winter and spring each year to prevent against leaks
and to provide optimal water coverage.
- If you do not have an underground irrigation system, use an oscillating (wave type)
sprinkler or an impact-drive revolving sprinkler for larger lawn area. Avoid watering with a
hand-held hose as it is the least effective.
- Water slowly for longer periods rather than more frequent, shorter cycles. This causes
- Water early in the day to minimize the amount of water evaporation. This also allows
plants to dry thoroughly before cool evening temperatures and discourage disease.
- Read about our Water saving irrigation systems.
- Allow lawn clippings to remain on the lawn to allow for natural fertilization and to
help the grass retain moisture.
- Adjust mower height to 1.5-2 inches to avoid burning the grass. Mow only 1/3 of the
grass length at a time to avoid stressing the grass.
- Improve lawns in poor condition with dethatching, aeration and over-seeding for optimal
- Water lawns about 1 inch once a week in the early morning or evening. Watering deeply
less frequently is best to promote hardy, deep roots.
- Consider replacing soggy, sloped or shady lawn areas with plantings. You may also want
to replace lawns with plantings in hard to mow areas such as along fences.
- Consider allowing lawn areas with lower traffic to go dormant in the summer months.
Water deeply once each rainless month and dormant lawns will return in the fall.
- Eliminate weeds frequently as they compete with plants for water and nutrients.
- Apply mulch to planting beds to help soil retain moisture.
- Select the right location for each plant by identifying ideal sun/shade exposure and
soil requirements to minimize water needs.
- Pruning dead and dying branches will enable tree roots to sustain the healthy tree more efficiently. Pruning sick
areas of the tree will also discourage bark beetles and other wood-boring insects.
- To prevent water loss, apply mulch to the soil surface around the root system to a depth of 3 inches. Be careful not
to mound mulch against the base of the tree trunk.
- For extensive tree care information, visit Davey Tree's website.
- The Puget Sound area offers several display gardens that demonstrate methods for water
- For websites offering water conservation information, visit our
landscaping resources section.
- For rain barrel vendors, visit our landscaping