Water conservation is good for everyone! Print Article Font Size

10thAve_FlowerGarden.JPGThough we have been seeing some much-needed rain in the forecast lately, being Water Smart is important for everyone.

Golden’s water use is at its highest in the spring and summer, and lawn watering is a large contributor to this increased use. By being conscientious about our watering, residents can lessen the impact on the local water supply and distribution, and on the environment.

Restrictions are put in place through a local bylaw so that people may water their lawns at appropriate times. Watering outside of the hottest part of the day results in more effective watering during this seasonal peak demand period.

Residents should only water from 4 a.m. to 10 a.m. and from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Odd numbered addresses are permitted to water on odd days while even numbered addresses may water on even days. Automatic irrigation systems should be set to water between 12 a.m. and 6 a.m.

Hand watering of plants using a hose with a working spring-loaded shut-off nozzle or a hand-held container is allowed at any time.

It behoves everybody to be water conscious to ensure that we maintain our reservoir storage for fire protection purposes. In addition, since 100 per cent of Golden’s water is pumped from groundwater, if we are pumping more, we end up paying more for power. So conserving our resources is a good thing!

Columbia Basin Trust’s Water Smart information, www.cbt.org, suggests these 10 ways to conserve water outdoors:

  • Use a Hose Timer - A hose timer or rain sensor can significantly reduce the amount of water you use.

  • Let Grass Grow - Taller grass shades new growth and reduces evaporation.

  • Say No to Nitrogen - High-nitrogen fertilizers need a lot of water in order for them to work, and they only temporarily stimulate new growth.

  • Say Yes to Organics - In place of nitrogen, top-dressing lawns annually with compost or high-quality topsoil to improve its water-holding capacity.

  • Use Grass Clippings - Grass clippings are a valuable organic source of nutrients, especially nitrogen, so leave them on the lawn.

  • Aerate - Aerating removes cores of soil and turf from the lawn, allowing water, nutrients and oxygen to penetrate the soil.

  • Avoid Evaporation - When a sprinkler is set to cover a large area, up to half the water could be lost to evaporation before it even hits the ground.

  • Mulch - Mulch acts as a protective cover around plants. It keeps soil cool and moist and discourages weed growth. Organic mulches such as straw, leaf, bark or wood chips work best. Avoid rocks as they retain heat, increasing the need for water.

  • Reduce Turf Areas - Replace water-thirsty grass with decking or mulched gardens of drought-tolerant plants.

  • Plant Wisely - Group plants according to their watering needs. Consider plant species that are indigenous to the area. They have adapted to local climate conditions and require little water to grow.

For more ideas on conserving water, visit cbt.org.