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10%20 Tips%20for%20 Water%20 Savings[1]
 

10%20 Tips%20for%20 Water%20 Savings[1]

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    10%20 Tips%20for%20 Water%20 Savings[1] 10%20 Tips%20for%20 Water%20 Savings[1] Presentation Transcript

    • Roberta Tolan Colorado State University Cooperative Extension Larimer County
    • Make Small Changes for Big Water Savings 10 Tips
    • #1 Evaluate Your Expectations
    • Expectation? High expectation = High water use Low expectation = Low water use
    • #2 Change irrigation controller for the season
    • Cool season turf* April May June July Aug. Sept. Oct. Per week 0.50” .75” 1.25” 1.50” 1.38” .88” 0.38” *Figures from Colorado Springs Utilities. Typical Turfgrass Water Requirements in Inches of Water per Week
    • Base irrigation scheduling on July water requirements Cool season turf* April May June July Aug. Sept. Oct. Per week 0.50” .75” 1.25” 1.50” 1.38” .88” 0.38” % July 33% 50% 83% 100% 92% 59% 25% *Figures from Colorado Springs Utilities.
    • Get to Know Your Irrigation Controller
    • #3 Determine Precipitation Rate for Each Zone
    • Calculate Precipitation Rate Step 1 -- Place 6 identical, straight sided, flat bottom cans randomly between sprinklers in zone. Do not use short cans like tuna, water may splash out.
    • Calculate Precipitation Rate Step 2 -- Run sprinklers exactly 10 minutes
    • Calculate Precipitation Rate Step 3 -- Pour all the water into one can Step 4 -- Measure depth of water in can This is the precipitation rate in inches per hour
    • Calculate Precipitation Rate Note: If the amount of water in some containers is significantly more or less than others, it indicates that the system is poorly designed or heads are malfunctioning.
    • Converting Inches to Minutes Formula Water to apply (inches) Run time = ------------------------------- X 60 minutes/hour PR (inches/hours)
    • Converting Inches to Minutes Formula Water to apply (inches) Run time = ------------------------------- X 60 minutes/hour PR (inches/hours) 0.5 inches Run time = -------------------------------- X 60 minutes/hour 1 1/2 inches/hour
    • Converting Inches to Minutes Formula Water to apply (inches) Run time = ------------------------------- X 60 minutes/hour PR (inches/hours) 0.5 inches Run time = -------------------------------- X 60 minutes/hour 1 1/2 inches/hour = 20 minutes
    •  
    • Converting Inches to Minutes Zone PR Amount Run Time 1 1 1/2”/hr 0.5” 2 2”/hr 1.2” 3 1/2”/hr 1.0” Adjust run times to match water needs of each zone 20 min 36 min 120 min
    • Fixed Day Watering Schedule
        • Water on Monday and Thursday nights
        • Last watered Thursday night
          • Friday 0.18” ET
          • Saturday 0.21” ET
          • Sunday 0.19” ET
          • Monday 0.16” ET
          • Total 0.74 inches used
          • Minus rain -0.12”
          • Net water to apply 0.62”
    • Fixed Day Watering Schedule
        • With a precipitation rate of 1.5 inches/hour
        • It takes 24 minutes to apply 0.6 inches
    • #4 Try Applying Water at 80% of ET
    • #5 Turn Off Sprinklers in Rainy Weather
        • Rain shut-off sensor
          • Required by law in many parts of the country. Not yet in Colorado.
        • Manually
    • #6 Soak & Cycle Slopes & Compacted Areas
    • Most compacted/clayey soils can’t absorb water as quickly as sprinklers apply it. Typical Front Range clayey soils = 1/4” per hour. If applying more than 1/4 inch: Use multiple short runs an hour apart Soak and Cycle?
    • #7 Hand Water Dry Spots
    • #8 Maintain With Good Horticultural Practices
    • Maintaining Landscapes in a Drought -Web Sites
      • www.drought.colostate.edu
      • http://csuturf.colostate.edu/drought.html
      • www.watersaver.org (tree watering)
      • http://et.csu.org/csu/et.jsp (Colorado Springs Utility
      • www.water.denver.co.gov
      • www.ncwcd.org (Northern Co. Water Conservancy District)
    • #9 Let the Plants Tell You When to Water
    • Turf Leaves gray/ blue to brown and wilted.
    • Turf
      • Footprints more visible due to drought.
    • #10 Mulch, Mulch, Mulch
    • Benefits of Mulch
      • Reduces evaporation cutting water use by 25-50%
      • Promotes soil microorganisms
      • Stabilizes soil moisture
      • Prevents soil compaction
      • Controls weeds
      • Moderates soil temperatures
      • Controls erosion
      • Gives a finished look
    • Mulching to Reduce Evaporation Mulch Soil Amendment Applied on surface Mixed into soil
    • Organic Mulch
        • Primary selection based on desired appearance and cost .
        • Wood chips decompose faster, enriching the soil.
        • Bark chips decompose slower, requiring less frequent replenishment.
    • Mulch Application
      • Depth
      • 3” to 4” standard
          • Best weed control
          • Eliminates compaction forces of foot traffic
        • 1-2” for poorly drained soils
          • On compacted/clayey soils with poor drainage, 3-4” may
          • reduce water evaporation so much that susceptible plants
          • develop root rot on wet years and under frequent irrigation
        • >4” -- may reduce soil oxygen levels
    • Mulch Application
      • Around trees
        • Great around trees, protecting from “lawn mower blight”
        • Do NOT make “mulch volcanoes” -- Keep mulch back about 6” from trunk
    • Mulch Application
      • Chips over landscape fabric
        • Standard procedure on commercial installations
        • Greater soil improvement without fabric
        • Weed seeds that germinate above the fabric are difficult to pull.
      • Chips over newspapers
        • Layers of newspaper block out light, preventing weed seed germination .
    • Mulch Application
      • Chips blow in windy areas
      • Shredded type chips more wind resistant
      • Generally not suited for windy areas.
      • Chips float
      • Not suited for area with standing water.
    • Rock Mulch
      • Heat sink
      • Raising temperatures (summer “people space” issue)
      • Increasing irrigation requirements
    • Mulch and Black Plastic
        • NEVER use rock over black plastic in plant beds (soil water and oxygen issue)
    • Tips for Big Water Savings
      • Evaluate your expectation
      • Change irrigation controller for the season
      • Determine precipitation rate for each zone
      • Try applying water at 80% ET
      • Turn off sprinklers in rainy weather
    • Tips for Big Water Savings
      • Soak & cycle slopes & compacted areas
      • Hand water dry spots
      • Use good maintenance practices
      • Let the plants tell you when to water
      • Mulch, mulch, mulch
    •