Commercial Landscaping Blog for The San Jose | Bay Area, CA

10 Smart Tips For Water Conservation

Posted by Sabrina Ayala on Sep 17, 2014 6:30:00 AM

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10 Smart Watering Tips That Can Save Money and Water

The drought is such a big problem here throughout the bay area and Northern California, and it’s not going away any time soon. FloraTerra is focused on educating our employees and clients. Water Conservation is an area that we invest a great deal of time and resources,  helping to keep our customers apprised of best watering practices, water saving opportunities as well as the latest technology that is available to help conserve where ever possible.

Smart Watering Tips 

Monitor and adjust your irrigation controller run times and/or the amount of time you run manual sprinklers, frequently. Monthly or even weekly, adjustments provide the greatest potential for water savings. Use the City’s Turf-Time information to create efficient watering schedule.

Water only when needed. Water management is the key to conserving water in the landscape. By knowing how much water your plants need, you can apply the right amount, have healthier plants and save money.

Install a rain sensor on irrigation controllers to avoid unnecessary watering after rainfall

Sprinklers should cover head to head for water efficiency. Water from one sprinkler head should reach the sprinkler head(s) adjacent to it. This overlapping pattern will provide the most uniform coverage. Even application of water is especially important for lawns. Head-to-head coverage reduces dry patches and overly wet areas.

Separate irrigation valves are used for hydro zones. Plants with the same water needs should be grouped together on the same irrigation valve to make watering efficient. Mixing plants of different water needs on the same irrigation valve means some plants can receive the right amount of water while the other plants receive too much or too little water. Additionally, areas of different exposure should be isolated on separate irrigation valves so shady areas can be watered less than areas receiving full sun.

Stretch the time interval between irrigation days. San Jose has clay soils, which means that after irrigating, soil oxygen is lacking and the soil will need time between irrigation events for higher levels of oxygen in the soil. This oxygen exchange must be available for plants to “live”, so it is recommended to allow a few days between irrigation days.

Water in the early Am. early morning hours, when less water is required to wind and evaporation. If you have a manual watering system, chose the least windy period of the morning to water. Evening watering is less desirable because fungus diseases have all night to attack moist foliage.

Delay irrigation until the first signs of slight stress. Spots in the lawn that turn bluish-gray, footprints that show in the grass long after being made, and many leaf blades folded in half lengthwise are all signs of wilt.

Avoid wasteful runoff by matching water application rates to soil absorption ability. Irrigate for short periods of time instead of one long irrigation event so water is able to soak in evenly. For example, apply 15 minutes of irrigation in three 5-minute applications, separated by an hour each (most irrigation controllers will allow these "multiple start times

Water application is limited to intended areas only. Watering sidewalks, patios, and driveways wastes water (prohibited under the City’s Water Waste Policy). Plus, water can damage these surfaces over time. It’s also important to only water planted areas and not bare soil. Otherwise, you can encourage weed growth, erode good soil, and possibly invite water-loving pests.

Water only where it is most needed. Tree roots may be one–two feet deep while grass roots are only a few inches deep, so know where the roots are and watering to the correct depth is the goal of efficient watering.

Trees: Watering slowly with a drip system or sprinkler every other month may be sufficient for established trees. Check the soil with a soil probe or shovel. Water deeply when the top 4-6" of soil is dry.

Shrubs: Watering once a week is sufficient for most shrubs, some can survive on less. As with trees, check the soil moisture and water deeply when the top 2-3" of soil is dry.

Ground cover: Typically, you need to water weekly until the soil is wet 6-18" deep. Established plants may do well with watering every two weeks.

Sustainable Landscaping Designs That Save Water 

“FloraTerra will also continue to educate our customers throughout the San Jose area on ways they can help with landscape water conservation by installing drought tolerant landscaping by removing water-thirsty lawns, replacing with drought resistant plants, ground cover and trees,” Gene Ebertowski, president says “Our efforts and focus are also on converting less efficient irrigation sprinkler systems to drip or bubblers whenever possible. The drought is such a big problem here throughout the bay area and northern California, and it’s not going away any time soon. Educating our employees and clients will continue to be an area that we invest a great deal of time and resources,  helping to keep our customers apprised of best watering practices, water saving opportunities as well as the latest technology that is available to help conserve where ever possible.”

Call a Water Management Expert!

Regardless if you own or manage a large retail center, or have a portfolio of Apartment Buildings or Office Parks, FloraTerra is very experienced in the area of water conservation and management, let us help you with your watering challenges.

Landscaping Services and Experts in Water Conservation

FloraTerra  is a Leading Landscape company , our landscaping design project includes water efficient planting and drip irrigation systems , providing a complete range of landscaping services, including water management for Residential Estates, Retail Shopping Centers, Mixed Use Development, Apartments and Multi-Residential Communities, Home Owners Associations, Condominiums and Commercial Office Developments.

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