Coeur d’Alene Will Reward Residents for Water Conservation
Here in Idaho, 40-60% of water consumed by homeowners is used outdoors for lawns and plants.
During the summer, Coeur d’Alene municipal water systems must pump 5-6 times more water than in the winter to provide for irrigation. Coeur d’Alene’s average winter demand is about 7 million gallons per day where a hot summer day will demand between 30 and 35 million gallons to be pumped to meet the needs of our community. Excessive use is costly to us and our environment.
But there are many things you can do to use water more efficiently:
1- Don’t water your landscape between the hours of 10AM – 6PM. During these hot sunny hours of the day at least 50% of water used is evaporating. So set your sprinklers to run in the morning or late at night.
2- Adjust your sprinkler system to avoid watering non-landscape areas or the concrete.
3- Determine weekly watering timing.
4-Turn sprinklers off during and following a rainstorm. Turn them on again when you see that your lawn and plants need watering. Automatic rain sensors are available at your local hardware store.
5- Sweep sidewalks, driveways, parking areas or other paved surfaces with a broom instead of hosing them down.
6- Wait until the weather warms up and the soil is completely dry — deep into the root zone — to turn on automatic sprinklers. Water manually when needed during early season months.
8- Plunge a screwdriver into your lawn before watering. The easier the screwdriver goes into the ground, the more water is in the soil, the less watering you need to do.
Healthy lawns only needs about 1- 1.5 inches of water per week, so Don’t overwater. There are many tools like a rain sensor switch, soil moisture sensors and hose bib timers that can assist you in using water wisely for your landscape.
In fact, if you purchase these conservation tools the City of Coeur d’Alene and Kootenai Environmental Alliance will provide you a one-time rebate credit of 75% of the cost of these tools, up to $75.
To learn more about this rebate program click here to get the City of Coeur d’Alene Water Department Residential Credit Rebate Application.
9- Planting low water use plants and native plants in your flower and garden beds can save you both money and water. This Xeriscape design involves selecting drought tolerant and native plant species that require little to no supplemental watering once they are established. Some of these plants may include lavender, syringa, catmint or the tall Oregon grape.
You can view these plants and more at the Shared Harvest Community Garden’s Xeriscape Demonstration Garden at the corner of 10th Street and Foster Ave. Here you can get design and plant selection ideas to make your very own at home and reduce your outdoor water use by 50-75%.