As the summer sun continues to get hotter, the threat of drought conditions increases. When it’s time to cut back on water usage due to dry conditions, those who value their landscaping often have a difficult time scaling back the amount of water they use. Of all the homes out there, nearly half of the water usage can be attributed to outdoor watering. Although some critics point out that people just want to have the best lawn in town, some may be surprised to find that well maintained landscaping can also aid in protection from erosion, brush fires, and other drought related issues. So what do you do if you want a nice looking lawn, while ensuring that you are doing your part in conserving water?
Aerate Your Lawn
One easy thing you can do to reduce watering frequency is by aerating your lawn every fall or spring religiously. This practice of removing bits of soil from the ground allows water and oxygen to more easily penetrate the dirt and grow stronger roots. Aeration also loosens up the ground a little, making it easier for water to absorb.
Make Sure it Needs Water
When it is hot and dry, you may sometimes be deceived into thinking that unpleasant weather automatically means your grass needs watering. If you want to potentially save thousands of gallons of water every year, the best thing you can do is check if your landscaping really needs the water. To do this, dig six inches down into the dirt with a trowel. If the soil from six inches down sticks together and is moist to the touch, your landscaping is good to go and does not need watering.
Don’t Mow Short
Although it is very tempting to mow your grass as short as possible so you don’t have to mow it as much, this can be damaging to both your grass and your water bill. In the heat of the summer, you will want to cut your grass about two and a half to three inches long. Longer grass shades the soil, causing less water evaporation.
Ensure Sprinklers Work Properly
Watering your sidewalk or driveway isn’t doing your landscape any good and it can add up to be a big waste of water and money. Every few weeks, make sure your sprinklers are placed where they are the most effective. Besides watering concrete, sprinklers can often get pushed down into the ground, causing them not to function properly. This could cost a lot of money and potentially cause damage to your landscaping due to too much water in some areas and not enough in others.
Check Irrigation Frequently
If you have an irrigation system, you may have realized by now that it tends to leak quite often. This can be a big waste of water and money, as well as a potential hazard for any plants or grass near the leak. To avoid this common problem, check up on your irrigation system fairly regularly. The most common leaking areas tend to be the sprinkler heads. If you notice a leak happening on a regular basis, contact a local landscaping professional so they can fix what is most likely a broken valve.
These are just a few of the endless ways for you to save money and water on your landscaping. By paying a little more attention to the care of your landscaping, it may be easier to cut back on unneeded watering. Summer, fall, or spring, water conservation is always important. By saving yourself money with water conservation, you are giving back to the community.
Written by Mike West, owner of WestCo Grounds Maintenance. WestCo provides the best solutions to landscaping Jefferson City MO has to offer. They also specialize in irrigation and lawn sprinkler service.