The City of Greeley will proclaim July as Smart Irrigation Month at the July 3 City Council Meeting. The State of Colorado has also named July as Smart Irrigation Month to draw attention to the importance of using water efficiently. July is the month of peak water demand for lawns, gardens and landscapes. The Irrigation Association named July as Smart Irrigation Month to increase public awareness about simple practices and innovative technologies homeowners, businesses and property managers can use to increase outdoor water efficiency. Homeowners typically overwater lawns and landscapes by up to 30 percent. By selecting and planting carefully, watering wisely, and maintaining and upgrading automated irrigation systems, consumers can save money, save water and see better results. Below are five tips for increased lawn watering efficiency.
Learn how to program your irrigation controller. Adjusting the run time and the frequency of watering based on current local weather conditions is the best way to give your plants the water they need.
Use the cycle and soak method. Instead of running your spray heads for 15 minutes, have 3 start times and run them five minutes each cycle. For rotors, instead of one cycle of 45 minutes, run three cycles of 15 minutes. You may even be able to shave off a minute or two by using this method of watering. The first cycle gets the soil moist and the second and third cycles actually soak into the root zone. For this to be effective there needs to be 45-60 minutes between cycles; run the whole system and then cycle through again. Doing this in the morning and then in the evening doesn’t work because the lawn dries out in between.
Add a smart controller to your system. Smart controllers use information about site conditions and applying the right amount of water based on factors such as soil conditions and weather. Rebates on smart controllers are available in Greeley.
Install a pressure-reducing valve to your system. High water pressure leads to misting and as much as 25 percent of water lost to evaporation.
Keep your system maintained and in good working condition. Adjust sprinkler heads to keep water on the landscape and off pavement and structures.
Get more information on efficient lawn watering and water conservation at www.greeleygov.com/wc. Follow Greeley Water Conservation on Twitter and Facebook for frequent conservation tips and information.