The Happy Gardener

The Newsletter Serving Residential Farmers of the world wide web


Water Management Doesn't End at the Faucet

Dripping faucet

Turf and landscape maintenance work hand in hand with water management. A few simple changes can make a big difference. Mow grasses at different lengths throughout the growing season; higher cuts shade the soil. Grasses cut by a sharp blade need less water to recover than if cut by a dull blade.

Organic matter added to the lawn helps it maintain moisture for longer periods. A ditch or burrow dug around shrubs and trees allows the water to penetrate more deeply. In the landscape, a 2-4" layer of mulch has 2 benefits; 1) it maintains a level of moisture that helps offset dry out periods between irrigations, 2) weed prevention.

In a yard composed of mostly trees and shrubs, a drip irrigation system is a better choice than overhead sprinklers. An automatic irrigation clock is a better choice than a manual valve because it won't forget to turn off and let the water run endlessly.

Educating Clients

Our monthly newsletter provides gardening facts and irrigation schedules. The schedules give clients the flexibility to. determine whether their yards need more or less water and tells how to adjust accordingly. Runoff, the water that flows from the sprinklers into the street, is controlled by dividing the sprinkler running times into thirds. We suggest watering the 1st interval at 1:00 A.M., the 2nd interval at 3:00 A.m. and the 3rd interval at 5:00Am. This gives the soil a chance to absorb the water.

The Benefits

The Irrigation Schedule gives homeowners an active role in participant centered leaming. Clients learn what types of sprinklers they have before matching them to the schedule and setting their clocks. Our schedules are designed to work with the changing seasons and temperatures, for example, clients learn that programming their clocks is different in May than it is in August. Homeowners feel good about saving water while they protect their investment, the landscape. Plants put down deeper roots to get at their water source and learn to drink water more slowly. Plants get one thing back that watering every day robs them of oxygen.

Heat Waves

Following this guideline helps to cool your nerves and protect your yard during heat waves: "When temperatures exceed 95 degrees, water your yard for one cycle to replace the water it lost through transpiration." Adding minutes to your watering time wastes less water than adding days.

Watering during the early a.m.

Dry Spots

Dry spots are primarily caused by simple irrigation problems that you can solve immediately.

Our Water Management Program not only saves water but also helps to maintain a healthy environment for your home and landscape.

'Better Care Through Integrated Pest Management'


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