Landscape Watering Reminder - August

Hot-hot-hot is the best description for these dog days of summer. While higher humidity makes us feel more uncomfortable, it does decrease the water needs of plants a little.

If you've been hit, rather than missed by the unpredictable monsoon rains, consider yourself lucky. Many areas of the Valley have still not received significant amounts (see tips below).

Lightning can mean power outages. Make sure you've replaced the battery in your irrigation timer within the past year (if it has that option). Battery backup will maintain your programs during an outage.

RECOMMENDATIONS                                                    

Recommendations are for plants that are established in the landscape (in the ground about 2 years).

Controller and battery

Find the battery behind the panel of most controllers .

Lawn watering:
Summer grass (Bermuda) - once every 3-4 days
Overseeded cool season grass (rye)-grass dies out
 
If trees and shrubs are on the same valve:
Desert Adapted - once every 15 days
High Water Use - once every 8 days
 
Tree watering:
Desert Adapted -once every 17 days
High Water Use - once every 9 days
 
Shrub watering:
Desert Adapted - once every 13 days
High Water Use - once every 6 days
 
Groundcover and vine watering:
Desert Adapted - once every 12 days
High Water Use - once every 5 days
 
Cacti and succulent watering - once every 22 days
 
Annual & vegetable watering - once every 2-3 days
  
Reduce your landscape watering 30 to 50 percent by adjusting your irrigation each season. Landscape Watering by the Numbers: A Guide for the Arizona Desert will help you determine how much water to apply and how long to run your system. Visit the interactive Web version or request a free copy of the booklet at www.wateruseitwisely.com.
 
Bonus tips

  • Converting your grass to Xeriscape in summer is best because it's easiest to kill the grass when it is actively growing. Mesa has resources to help! Find out about our $500 Rebate, our Top 10 Reasons to Take Out Your Grass and our August Sustainability Saving's Tip.

  • Where does all that water go? Did you know that a typical pool loses about 2,500 gallons to evaporation in July? Learn how to Keep the Splash in your Pool.

  • Rainwater is a clean, salt-free source of water that contains many beneficial ingredients for plants. Check out our resources below for harvesting rainwater from our monsoon storms:

    • Harvesting Rainwater for the Landscape will help you learn how to harvest this free resource.

    • Rain amounts vary greatly across the Valley, so if you are not sure how much fell in your yard, visit www.rainlog.org to see what your neighborhood weather watchers recorded. Anytime you receive at least one-half inch of rain, use the 'off' 'stop' or 'rain' setting on your controller to stop the watering cycle without disturbing your programs.

  • How long should you run your sprinklers? Each time you water your grass, be sure to water long enough to wet the soil to a depth of 6-10 inches. Applying 3/4" of water will do this, but how long does that take? For many pop-up sprinklers, it takes about 20 minutes, but systems vary so much, it's best to perform a Can Test (see pg. 5). This will determine your run time that you use every time you irrigate. The adjustment you'll make through the seasons will be the frequency.

    To register for monthly watering reminder emails, visit www.Mesaaz.gov and click on Email Alerts located in the right navigation bar. Choose Landscape Watering Reminder, and follow the registration instructions. You can remove your name from the list at any time.

    For more information about Mesa's water conservation programs, visit www.Mesaaz.gov/conservation.

 -H20-