Water suppliers in Boulder and Broomfield counties are recommending eight best practices for outdoor water use to help residents and businesses conserve water in their communities.
1. Wait to water lawns. Don't turn on sprinklers too early in the season. Leaving lawns dormant longer will save water. If dry conditions persist, hand-water trees and plants as needed.
2. Water twice a week to make grass more resilient. Watering twice a week will make grass roots grow deeper and allow the grass to last longer without water. Cycle sprinkler system run times to prevent runoff. Instead of setting each zone to water for fifteen minutes, set each zone to water for five minutes, every hour, for three hours.
3. Water before 10 a.m. or after 6 p.m. Watering lawns in the early morning or at night will help prevent water loss. During the daytime heat, less water will soak into lawns due to loss from evaporation and wind.
4. When it rains, water less. Watch the weather and adjust watering days and times accordingly. Residents and businesses with sprinkler system control clocks can use rain sensors to shut off irrigation before or during rainstorms.
5. Watch for leaks. Check for broken sprinkler heads or damaged irrigation lines that are wasting water and repair leaks quickly.
6. Let grass grow longer before cutting it. Raise lawn mower blades and protect lawns from heat by letting grass grow longer.
7. Water lawns, plants and trees - not roads or sidewalks. Adjust or repair sprinkler heads to keep water on lawns, plants and trees. Use a broom instead of spraying driveways with water.
8. Install low-water landscape and efficient irrigation systems. Use xeriscape methods, such as adding mulch and low-water grass, trees, and plants. Avoid installing landscaping during the hottest months of the summer. Use drip hoses or other efficient irrigation techniques.