Watering lawns and landscape plants can account for up to 50% of an average homeowner's total water use. Watering a typical 5,000 square-foot yard with an in-ground sprinkler system could cost more than $10 per application.
By properly creating and maintaining a water-efficient sprinkler system, you can reduce water usage while maintaining an attractive landscape.
- Solutions to Common Irrigation Problems
- Test Your Rain Sensor
- Terms to Know
- Water Use Restrictions
- Urban Irrigation Scheduler (Part of UF / IFAS FAWN network)
- Find an EPA WaterSense Irrigation Partner
Sprinkler System Evaluation
Normal wear and tear of your sprinkler system can lead to malfunctions and water waste. Efficient water use requires simple but ongoing maintenance.
The first step is to perform a routine visual inspection of your sprinkler system. Frequency should depend on property usage. For instance, inspections should be performed more frequently on property heavily used by children or pets.
During the visual inspection, you should ensure that the system functions properly. Look for broken, missing, or worn parts. Check for any leaks and obstructed sprinkler heads. Be sure to properly fix any problems.
Watching for Signs
Periodically inspect plants for the signs of over watering or under watering. Applying the right amount of water to your landscape can yield substantial water savings and better plant growth.
Signs of Over Watering
Prolonged periods of standing water can harm and possibly kill plants.
- Leaves may be yellow, brown, or drop prematurely.
- Individual branches may die back.
- Leaves turn yellow or light green.
- Leaves may droop, even when water is applied.
- Roots are wet, mushy, and dark brown to black.
- The soil around the roots is moist to the touch, yet the plant still droops.
Signs of Under Watering
Dry plants suffer stresses that cause damage to roots, leaves, and stems.
- Leaves turn pale or light green.
- Leaves droop or wilt.
- Leaves may turn brown, starting on the edges.
- Stems have a wrinkled look and turn yellow or brown.
- The Soil around the roots feels dry.