Think of your soil as a reservoir that holds water for your plants. Watering to the root depth of your plants creates a healthier and more efficient garden. For lawns in clay soil, this means applying ½ inch of water to moisten the soil to a depth of 6 inches; water shrubs even more deeply and less frequently. You can determine how long it takes to apply ½ inch of water by setting out several catch cans, running your sprinklers, and measuring the time it takes to fill them with ½ inch of water. Lawns planted in very sandy soils will require less than ½ inch each watering day but more frequent application. Another method of determining how deeply you are watering is to water for five minutes, then probe the soil to see how deeply you have moistened the soil.
Your landscape does not need as much water in April as it does in July. We adjust watering schedules for the seasonal changes. We know plants’ requirements for optional growth, in the heat of summer and in the coolness of spring and autumn, each plant is considered in our water management plan.
We use irrigation controllers to break up the application of water into shorter run times. By allowing the soil to absorb more of the applied water to reach your plants’ root zone in an irrigation day. This is especially important when your lawn and landscape is planted on a slope or in clay soil, which absorbs water slowly.
The new generation of products are available that will can automatically adjust your irrigation schedule based on actual weather conditions. By using these controllers we can prevent irrigation when it rains, apply more water to your landscape during unexpected hot and dry spells, and automatically cycle /soak to reduce runoff from slopes (which will save you water and money).
EBMUD offers vouchers for the purchase of qualifying Smart controllers. Customers who use at least 750 gpd for landscape irrigation may qualify for a $300 voucher. Larger irrigators may qualify for up to $600 or $1,200 vouchers. Contact Us to find out how you can start saving.
We do inspections to audit our water management system. By checking and adjusting on a regular basis, we will make sure all of your stations are functioning properly and that there are no broken or misadjusted heads.
Incorporating drip irrigation systems into your landscape water can be more accurately targeted and at a much lower rate than overhead spray. Drip irrigation’s slow and more accurate application of water to the plant roots prevents water from spraying and running off on walkways, parking lots and into gutters. As part of well designed water management solution, a drip system is durable and there is even sub-surface drip irrigation for lawns. EBMUD offers rebates to customers that install drip irrigation systems.
Whether adding to your existing landscape or replacing your existing one, by choose Mediterranean or California native plants your landscape will thrive on less summer water. Native plants can create a colorful, interesting, and lush landscape that is well suited to the climates and soils found in our region. Let our tree, shrub and plant experts design your commercial, retail, HOA and medical location landscapes.
Mulch is often referred to as the “secret weapon” of water conservation in any region. By mulching, we maintain moisture in the soil, suppress weeds, protect the irrigation system from the harmful rays of the sun, while giving your landscape a finished look.
The Department of Water Resources AB 2717 Landscape Task force has started to “make recommendations leading to comprehensive actions that will improve landscaping water use efficiency.” The task force report findings, recommendations and actions can be found on their website.
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