FYN Principle #2 - Water Efficiently
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FYN Principle #2 - Water Efficiently



FYN Principle #2:

FYN Principle #2:
Right Plant, Right Place

Rebecca McNair & Allison Steele
Florida Yards & Neighborhoods Program



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    FYN Principle #2 - Water Efficiently FYN Principle #2 - Water Efficiently Presentation Transcript

    • Watering Efficiently Author: Rebecca McNair Edited by: Allison Steele Domestic Water Use Sources Depletion Conservation Efficient Water Use Plant Selection Turfgrass Areas Selecting Drought Tolerant Species Landscaped Beds Plant Maintenance How to Water Rain Catching Devices
    • Water Use In Florida
      • Despite our location in the rainy southeast, Florida ranks high in several categories of water use
      • Domestic-1st
      • Mining-2nd
      • Public-4th
      • Irrigation-11th
      USGS, 1998
    • Plants Need Water…
      • For cell growth and expansion
      • For plant metabolism
      • Transporting soil minerals to roots
      • Physical support through turgor pressure
      • Transporting sugars within the plant
      • Cooling through transpiration
    • What Can I Do?
        • Right plant, right place
        • Choose low maintenance plants and natives
        • Group plants according to their water needs
        • Use mulch
      Design a water efficient landscape:
    • Water Use Efficiency
      • Uncontrollable Factors
        • Temperature
        • Precipitation
        • Sunlight
        • Wind
        • Soil texture
        • Drainage
        • Water quality
        • Local water restrictions
      • Controllable Factors
        • Plant selection
        • Plant placement
        • Soil structure
        • Mulching
        • Irrigation
        • Maintenance practices
        • Human Tolerance
        • Education
    • Based on research, 1,000 ft 2 of: requires 12,480 – 21,840 gallons of irrigation water/year require 6,240 gallons irrigation water/year Woody landscapes can conserve up to 15,600 gallons of irrigation water/year. Grass Woody plants in a mulched area
    • Functional Turf Areas
      • Berms and Swales
        • Excellent filter, and diminishes pollutants and stormwater run-off
      • Recreational areas
        • Resistant to foot traffic, produces oxygen and reduces temperature, glare, noise, and dust
      • Pet areas
    • Functional Landscaped Beds
      • Screen a view
      • Cover oddly-shaped areas difficult to mow or irrigate
      • Plant a shady area where turf won’t grow
      • Group plants for easy maintenance
      • Provide color, shade, or windbreak
      Periwinkle Annuals, perennials, ground covers, shrubs or trees in a mulched area, to:
    • Drought Tolerant Turf
      • Select drought tolerant turf varieties
        • When establishing a new lawn, sod requires less water than seeding
      • Follow maintenance guidelines to promote drought tolerance
        • During extreme drought, slower growth and browning are normal! Very little water is required to keep the turf alive and turf recovers quickly once irrigation is resumed.
    • Selecting Drought Tolerant Turf
      • Seashore Paspalum ‘SeaIsle
      • Excellent drought tolerance
      • Excellent salt tolerance
      • Disease and pest resistant
      • Tolerates flooding and some shade
      • Mow at 1.5 – 2 inches in height
      • Does require lot of mowing and fertilizing
      Seashore paspalum Paspalum vaginatum (Swartz)
    • Selecting Drought Tolerant Turf Bahiagrass Paspalum notatum
      • Bahiagrass Argentine
        • Good cold and drought tolerance
        • Coarse, dense growth
        • Wear tolerant
        • Dormant in winter
        • Poor salt and shade tolerance
        • Mow at 3-4 inches
    • Maintenance Guidelines for Drought Tolerant Turfgrass
      • Never mow grass that needs water
      • Never mow wet grass
      • Keep blade sharp
        • Clean cuts heal quickly and reduce water loss
      • Mow lawn at the
      • highest setting
        • Taller grass has deeper, more extensive roots
    • Turfgrass Maintenance
      • Fertilize conservatively
        • Rapid growth promotes thatch build-up
        • Refer to UF/IFAS guidelines
      • Remove thatch
        • Thatch restricts water movement
        • Use a stiff rake or coring tool to aerate the soil
        • Thatch
    • Landscape Maintenance
      • 2-3 inches of mulch in plant beds
        • Improves water infiltration
        • Reduces storm water runoff
        • Reduces evaporation
        • Prevents erosion
        • Controls weeds
      • Minimize pruning
    • When Do I Water?
      • Early morning or evening
        • Temperature is cool and wind is calm
        • 40% - 60% of water applied evaporates in the afternoon sun!
      • SWFWMD mandates:
      No watering between 10 AM and 4 PM Year - round!
    • How Much?
      • Apply ½ to ¾ inch water per application
      • Soak soil thoroughly to promote a deeper, more drought tolerant root system
      Efficient watering wets only the root zone.
    • Measure It
      • Use a rain gauge, or…
      • Place cans of equal diameter in random places underneath the sprinkler’s spray pattern
      • Measure the depth of water in each can
      • Add depth measurements & divide by the number of cans
      Determine the length of time it takes for your sprinkler system to deliver ¾ inch water.
    • How Often?
      • Water “as needed,” not routinely!
      • Less frequently in the fall and winter
      • Check with CCU or SWFWMD about water restrictions during drought
      Typically, Florida’s rainy season is June - September.
    • Watering Tips
      • Learn to recognize when plants need water
      • In the heat of midday, some plants wilt. No amount of water will change this. If the plant is still wilted by evening, water it then.
      Wilting azalea
    • Water “As Needed” Folded leaflets, a blue color, and footprints that remain on the lawn are indications of a lawn that needs water.
    • Too much of a good thing?
      • Over watering occurs when water is applied too frequently or in excessive amounts
        • Encourages growth of fungi and bacteria
        • Promotes a shallow root system
        • Reduces oxygen to the roots, causing stress
        • Encourages weed growth
      Pennywort is a good indication of an over watered lawn.
    • Irrigation Systems
      • Calibrate the sprinkler system
      • Install a rain shut-off device**
      • Have your sprinkler system “tuned up” yearly
      • Replace worn hose and faucet washers
      Rain Shut-off Device
    • Efficient Irrigation
      • Separate lawn zones from landscape zones
      • Convert landscape beds to drip or low volume irrigation
      • Divert sprinklers to avoid spraying water on sidewalks and streets
    • Low Volume Sprinklers Micro-jet sprinkler Drip emitters Micro-irrigation can improve watering efficiency.
    • Tips on Conserving Water
      • Use recycled or gray water to irrigate
        • From showers or washing machines, but not toilets
      • Direct downspouts toward beds or lawn
      • Cover pools and hot tubs to prevent evaporation
    • Rain Barrels
      • Collect and harvest rain water for irrigation purposes
      • Rainwater runs off roof into the barrel from the downspout
      • A screen fastened over the inlet prevents leaves or insects from entering
    • Cisterns
      • Imply greater storage capacity and a bit more engineering
      • Water travels by gravity or pump action
      • Diagram after Ray Bucklin
    • Further Reading http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu
      • Fact Sheet WRC-11: Conserving Water in the Home Landscape
      • ENH-70: Coping with Drought in the Landscape
      • Circular 807: Drought Tolerant Plants for North and Central Florida
      • ENH-860: Fertilization and Irrigation Needs for Florida Lawns and Landscapes
      • ENH-72: Landscape Design for Water Conservation