More Tips for Reducing Water Waste

  • Water only in the early morning , when it's cooler and less windy, to reduce evaporation. Watering when the sun is beating down can cause up to 90 percent of moisture to evaporate away.

  • Raise your lawn-mower blade to 2 1/2 to 3 inches. Allowing turf grass to grow a little taller naturally shades its roots and helps keep the sun from drying out the soil.

  • Cluster like plants with like. Not only are dramatic masses of plants more effective from a design perspective, they allow you to "hydro-zone" your yard according to moisture needs, so you aren't drowning low-water plants. Research plants' specific requirements by reading nursery tags or asking for advice at the local garden center.

  • Harvest rainwater runoff. Install gutter-fed rain barrels or consider an underground cistern. Talk to your plumber about the possibility of capturing "gray water" from your washing machine for landscape use. It's estimated that recycling water in these ways can reduce consumption of fresh water by up to 80 percent.

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