It’s spring in Utah and the itch to spruce up and get the garden and lawn going is strong. I love this time of year and I support those with green thumbs but as a reminder let’s try to keep Utah’s water limits in mind as we go about our daily lives.
A little awareness can really help us stretch our desert resources and when it comes to conserving water, small adjustments can have a big impact. Here are some water-saving tips:
Outside: Only water the lawn and garden as really needed. Water early in the morning and not at all on windy days. Water deeply to promote root growth. Check sprinkler heads. (No need to water the driveway). Use drip irrigation for shrubbery and gardens. Aerate. Xeriscape where you can. Plant drought-resistant trees, plants and grass.
If you have one, cover the pool. Evaporation wastes lots of water. Let the grass grow a little longer between mows. (Use the extra time to play catch with a kid!) Leave the clippings on the lawn. Don’t over fertilize. Get out and weed. Weeds consume precious water that is better used for other plants. Take the car to a carwash. (Besides saving water, it saves on downstream pollution.)
Inside: Use the dishwasher but fill it up first. Add an aerator to your kitchen sink to mix air, reduce flow and cut water usage. Keep cold water handy in the fridge rather than running the faucet to get a cool drink.
In fact, avoid running water wherever possible. Rinse vegetables in a pan then reuse the water for indoor plants. Defrost food without running water over it. Compost scraps instead of using the disposal.
Don’t leave the water running for shaving or brushing teeth. Take shorter showers. Put in a water-efficient shower head. Check for drips and leaks. Repair them right away. (Even a small drip can waste 50 or more gallons of water a day.)
Replace old appliances with energy-efficient models. Replace older-model toilets. Save money AND water. Think about saving water every time you turn on a faucet or open up a hose.
For more smart water usage tips, check out the Utah County Association of Realtors Guide to Saving Water.