This is the time of the year when the department likes to share tips for conserving water. Since outdoor water use presents the most stress to our water system, the district suggests the following landscaping tips:
Add organic material or compost to the soil. Mulch will also help the soil to maintain moisture.
Buy a rain gauge to set in your lawn which will help you to determine how much natural or lawn sprinkler water your landscaping has received.
Choose grass species that are drought tolerant. The Massachusetts Department of Food and Agriculture recommends tall Fescue and fine Fescues as the most drought-tolerant grasses.
Don’t cut your grass too short or too often during low rainfall periods.
Don’t water on windy days or in the middle of the day when you’ll lose much of the water to evaporation.
Shady areas need less water. Plant shade trees and carefully maintain those that are already in the yard.
Watering thoroughly once or twice a week should be adequate for any type of landscaping. Deep watering less often promotes deeper roots which in turn require less water. Irrigation systems should be used only to supplement natural rainfall.
When preparing a landscape plan, including alternatives to grass such as ground covers, wood chips, stones, or natural features. Keeping a lawn green and healthy requires more water. Consider a patio or rock garden as an alternative to grass.