1) Adapt your watering
schedule to the weather and the season
. Familiarize yourself with the
settings on your irrigation controller. Adjust the watering schedule
regularly to conform with current weather conditions.
2) Schedule each
individual zone in your irrigation system
. "Scheduling" accounts for
the type of sprinkler, sun or shade exposure and the soil type for the
specific area. The same watering schedule should almost never apply to all
zones in the system.
3) Inspect your system
. Check for leaks, broken or clogged heads, and other problems,
or engage an irrigation professional to regularly check your system. Clean
micro-irrigation filters as needed.
4) Adjust sprinkler
. Correct obstructions that prevent sprinklers from distributing
water evenly. Keep water off pavement and structures.
5) Get a professional
. Hire a professional to conduct an irrigation audit and
uniformity test to make sure areas are being watered evenly. This can be
especially helpful if you have areas being under-watered or brown spots.
The Irrigation Association maintains an online list of IA Certified
Landscape Irrigation Auditors.
6) Consider "smart"
. Climate- or soil moisture sensor-based controllers evaluate
weather or soil moisture conditions and then calculate and automatically
adjust the irrigation schedule to meet the specific needs of your
landscape. Learn more athttp://www.irrigation.org/swat/homeowners/
7) Install a rain
shutoff switch - inexpensive and effective
. Required by law in many
states, these money-saving sensors turn off your system in rainy weather
and help to compensate for natural rainfall. The device can be retrofitted
to almost any system.
8) Consider low volume
drip irrigation for plant beds
. Install micro irrigation for gardens,
trees and shrubs. Micro irrigation includes drip (also known as trickle),
micro spray jets, micro-sprinklers, or bubbler irrigation to irrigate
slowly and minimize evaporation, runoff and overspray.
9) Water at the optimum
. Water when the sun is low or down, winds are calm and
temperatures are cool - between the evening and early morning - to reduce
evaporation. You can lose as much as 30% of water to evaporation by
10) Water only when
. Saturate root zones and let the soil dry. Watering too much and
too frequently results in shallow roots, weed growth, disease and
Best advice for a healthy, drought- and stress-tolerant lawn and landscape:
use less water. These tips will help keep more money in your wallet instead
of sending it down the drain.