Is Your Lawn Going To Survive The Water Restrictions This Year?
Summer is here and it is hot! A serious heat wave is hitting all across the country. While we got some rain this spring, even as late as May and early June, our water supply is still very low. Utah has had water restrictions in place for a while now. This year, Cache Valley cities asked us to reduce our water use by as much as 30-40%. We have only two days a week to water. It’s much tighter than last year. In this situation, smart water management is even more vital.
So, since July is Smart Irrigation Month, we’re going to go over some of the information we’ve talked about for low-water landscaping.
Managing Your Lawn
Last year, we talked about tips to keeping your lawn in good health during the dry season You can read the full article yourself, but we’ll give a brief summary here.
The two main things you should avoid doing are wasting water and stressing your lawn. For smarter watering, don’t water in the heat of the day, when it will mostly evaporate. Also, make sure your sprinklers only spray onto your lawn rather than roads and sidewalks. Having your sprinklers run between 3 and 6 AM is the best time and when you do water, do it heavily for an hour. This will saturate the soil, giving your grass enough moisture to live on for up to a week at a time. You can also add more mulch to your landscape, since mulch will hold moisture better than soil alone.
To avoid stressing your lawn, stop using fertilizers and pesticides and let your grass grow out to between 2.5-3 inches so it shades the soil better. Keep off the grass as much as possible during the hot months. And don’t worry about a little brown in your lawn. Grass can go dormant and survive very dry periods for a couple of months and come back just fine.
Cut Back On Grass
Grass has always been the biggest water hog of anything you plant in your yard. If you really want to cut down on your watering, the surest way is to cut back on your grass. Limit grass to small areas and try grass alternatives elsewhere. Keep in mind, astroturf and fake grass may have just as many problems as real grass, so we don’t advise it as an alternative. Instead, consider rock and gravel, wood chips, and other native plants. This process – called Xeriscaping – is a great way to cut down on water use.
Xeriscaping may be the best plan for businesses in Cache Valley, especially those with a lot of foot traffic. It gives you a lot of options for a unique look as well as cutting down on water use. Why worry about the cost of water when low-water landscaping can look just as good and use 70% less water than a big, boring, water-hogging plot of grass? When you’ll be surrounded by sidewalks and parking lots, this can be the best way to avoid waste.
Don’t Be Crushed By Water Restrictions
The drought isn’t going away any time soon. We’d need several years of much better rain than we’ve been getting just to get back to normal – and normal for Cache Valley is still desert conditions. You can expect these water restrictions to continue for at least the next few years, so it would be smart to rethink how you handle your landscape and water use.
Some simple redesigns, especially ones that reduce the amount of grass on your property, can drastically reduce your water use. Summer is not the best time to plant new landscapes, but you can always plan. Landscape features like rock gardens and gravel paths can be implemented even now, since they don’t require any water at all. For the rest, make plans for next spring.
We Can Help
We do a lot of landscaping for businesses around Cache Valley and some areas beyond, like the Bear Lake area, or Box Elder County. If you need some help managing your lawn for reduced water use, why not let us give you a hand? We can help you plan and implement a low-water landscape that will reduce your water bill and keep the water restrictions from utterly ruining your lawn. Just get in touch today and see what we can do for you.