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Learn why you should water efficiently in this video.

Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ Principle # 2:

Water Efficiently

"Living green" means we are seeking ways to live wisely and pass on Florida intact or even better than we found it to the next generation. Conserving water at home is a critical step in protecting existing resources. Adding up all the water that goes into everything we do, from sprinkling our landscape plants to showering, the average Floridian uses 150 gallons of water each day. People often don't recognize that sprinkling your landscape can account for up to 50% of water household water use. Landscape irrigation is a great place to focus on going green.

A truly efficient way to use water in your yard is to design a landscape so that it thrives predominantly on rainfall. Even if your yard has a lawn and specialty gardens, it is possible to design so you only need to water the plants as needed. For more information on watering efficiently, visit Gardening Solutions.

Always remember to follow all local water restrictions. Contact your local water department to determine your day and time to sprinkle.

Florida-Friendly Landscapes: Water Efficiently

  • Design and maintain a yard that thrives predominantly on rainfall once plants are established.
  • Water your lawn and other plants only when they show signs of stress. (Comply with any existing watering restrictions in your community.)
  • Calibrate your sprinkler(s) to apply 1/2 to 3/4 inch of water per application.
  • Mow lawns high to encourage a deeper, more drought- and pest-tolerant root system. A higher cut also shades out weeds. Cut no more than 1/3 the height of grass blades with each mowing.
  • Create a rain garden or aquascape.
  • Put a rain gauge in your yard to track rainfall and avoid unnecessary watering.
  • Connect an automatic rainfall shut-off device to your sprinkler system's timer. Set the device to 1/2 inch so it will override your system's timer when enough rain has fallen. Replace back-up batteries in your system's timer each year before the rainy season. Check to see if the shut-off device is working properly.
  • Consider the use of additional smart irrigation technology (soil moisture sensors, ET controllers, or other automated methods) on in-ground systems.
  • Design or modify your sprinkler system to water lawn areas separately from plant beds requiring less water.
  • Use a micro-spray irrigation system to more efficiently water plant and flower beds.