Water use is a hot-button topic for Arizona, and landscaping is one of the biggest household water guzzlers. Whether you’re trying to control your water bill or just want to do your part and conserve more, there are plenty of things you can do to reduce your outdoor water use while still maintaining your curb appeal. Simple solutions from different planting choices to getting regular sprinkler repair for your Glendale AZ home will add up to major conservation.
Rethink Your Plantings
Nonnative species, turf grass and other water-hog plantings are going to demand more frequent irrigation than native and low-water choices. Switching out your landscaping is one of the biggest things you can do to conserve water. Look for the EPA “Water Smart” label at nurseries or look up native plants for ideas.
Group plants with similar water needs together to make irrigation planning easier and more efficient. If you like the look of certain water-loving plants, put them together. That way, you only have to water a small section more heavily than the rest of your landscaping.
Consider eliminating turf grass entirely. Just 1,000 square feet of grass can demand up to 33,642 gallons of water in Arizona. Opting for a fully landscaped yard, with all pathways, seating areas and planting beds, will look “designer magazine” stunning while drastically reducing water demands.
Get An Irrigation Tune Up
Accurate and efficient application of water is a key aspect of conservation. If your sprinkler heads are out of alignment and spraying sidewalks, driveways or the wrong areas of your lawn, all that water is being wasted. You might also notice improper zoning, which causes spray head patterns to overlap, or water runoff pouring away from your plantings in the middle of irrigation, which is the result of poor system timing.
Schedule a tuneup with a company specializing in sprinkler repair for Glendale AZ area homes. Sprinkler specialists have experience with zoning, spray head repair and system efficiency that general landscaping companies do not.
Fix Your Soil
Soil conditions play a big part in the health of your plants and how water is retained in your landscaping. Check with your garden centers about soil testing and have one performed. You’ll get back a list of your soil’s attributes along with a list of recommended soil amendments. If you know the soil is a little different in a few areas of your yard, have multiple sample tests performed.
Amendments that adjust pH or nutrient levels will help your plants grow stronger, making them more drought- and heat-tolerant. Amendments that impact water retention can fix issues like water evaporating too quickly, draining away too quickly or pooling in some areas and not in others.
Switch to Drip Irrigation
If you’re doing some major replanting, consider installing a new irrigation system while you’re at it. Drip irrigation systems conserve water by reducing evaporation and providing more precise amounts of water to plantings.
Call in a professional company that does installation and sprinkler repair in Glendale AZ and surrounding areas to ensure you get the most efficient system possible. Sprinkler professionals don’t do “one size fits all” systems. They can customize a system to delivery the perfect amount of water to your plantings.
Bring On the Mulch
Mulch is a water saver’s best friend. By shading the soil’s surface from the sun, mulch suppresses evaporation and keeps more water in the soil. A layer of mulch 3 to 4 inches thick can help you cut back on watering.
Organic mulches, like bark, do a better job than inorganic materials like gravel. Pine and cedar have excellent balance of longevity and water retention. Be wary of cypress mulches, which can be temperamental to work with. They often repel water unless thoroughly soaked with some frequency and may not work well with low-water landscaping.
Make sure your irrigation system is set to run in the early morning. It helps keep excessive evaporation at bay while still drying things out enough to stave off disease. If you have plants you water with a hose and can’t do it in the morning, try for early evening instead.
When watering, make sure the water penetrates 12 inches for annuals and grass, 12 to 18 inches for shrubs and perennials and 12 to 24 inches for trees. You can check the water depth with a soil tester, metal skewer or long screwdriver. The deeper it penetrates without resistance, the deeper the water has reached. These deep waterings give your plants plenty to drink in between waterings and encourage deeper, stronger roots.
Water-smart gardening and efficient, professional irrigation can slash your water bills and keep more water in Arizona’s rivers and reservoirs. If you know you need sprinkler repair in Glendale AZ or the surrounding areas, give Sprinkler Doctors a call.