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Efficient Summer Irrigation

June 9, 2023

While winter snowpacks may have improved water reserves throughout much of the Pacific Northwest, there is still a need for smart water use on lawns, flowerbeds, and gardens. The Coastal crew has compiled some efficient summer irrigation tips to keep your yard looking great while also conserving water for farmers, ranchers and others.  

Try Xeriscaping: Americans use billions of gallons of water on lawns every day. Xeriscaping can help cut your water use in half. Check out our article on xeriscaping and how to apply it to your property.

Reduce Your Lawn: Even if xeriscaping isn’t your thing, you can still save on water use by removing some of your lawn. Even a 10% reduction can save many gallons of water a week.

Water Early and Deep: Whether it’s a lawn, garden, or flowerbed, apply water in the early morning hours (well before 10am). But not too early. Watering late at night (around midnight), can produce fungus. To properly water your lawn, give it approximately .5” of water twice a week. Depending on your sprinkler system, that can take upwards of 30 minutes. To measure how much you water, use a rain gauge at different areas of your lawn.

Be Efficient: If you’re watering a lawn, place plants that require more water closer to that lush carpet of green. Also, add bark chips or bark mulch to flowerbeds to help hold in moisture. If you have potted plants, you can achieve the same results on extra-hot days by placing shredded, watered-down newspaper over the soil. Other mulch options include leaves from last fall, grass clippings, compost, and more.

Create Watering Zones: Group plants and shrubs with similar watering needs. This allows you to set specific water schedules for each zone. For example, your garden could be a zone, while grasses and shrubs, as well as flowers and bulbs could be in their own zone.

Constantly Adjust Your Sprinklers: Be sure you’re not watering sidewalks, streets, fences, or areas that don’t need moisture. You’ll conserve water use and save money.

Create Water Reservoirs: To create your own, dig a hole in your garden or near a flowerbed, and bury a plastic pot (with small drain holes). Add dirt to the outside of the pot so it’s firmly in place. Leave the rim of the pot above the soil. Fill the pot with water and watch it slowly feed the roots of nearby plants. Here’s a bonus: every time you water, you’ll be adding to the reservoir.

Collect Rainwater: Some regions do not allow homeowners to collect large amounts of rainwater to ensure water returns to underground aquafers and eventually to lakes and streams. However, simple rain barrels are an easy way to collect rain that can then be used for irrigation instead of drinkable water. Check with your city and county for legal restrictions and permits.  

Reduce Weeds: Are you watering weeds in your garden or yard? Remove those weeds so that your plants and vegetables get all the moisture.  

Coastal Understands Your Region

Stop by your nearby Coastal where you’ll find everything the country needs, including knowledgeable employees who know your region. While you’re at the store, check out one of the biggest footwear departments in the Northwest from brands you know and trust.