For many people, automatic irrigation systems and sprinklers are somewhat mysterious. The sprinkler system comes on, often at night or early in the morning, water the plants and the grass, and then they stop. The controller looks intimidating with a bunch of buttons or dials, and many avoid touching the controller for fear of messing up the irrigation schedule.
50-60% of the potable water supply is used to irrigate our gardens. It is a widely accepted estimate that 30% more water is applied to turf lawns than what they actually need. All this water is needlessly wasted at great cost since it is expensive to bring the water to the City and to treat the water to potable standards. Our goal is that efficient irrigation will become the norm and "dry weather run off" will be no more! We hope that our residents and businesses will "take control of their controllers" - turn the irrigation system off when it rains and modify the irrigation schedule based on the seasons, the weather and the water needs of the plants.
We are proud to present a series of well written, easy-to-read and interesting irrigation articles by Melissa Baum-Haley, Water Use Efficiency Programs Specialist at Municipal Water District of Orange County (MWDOC).
This picture illustrates inefficient irrigation and a large quantity of dry weather runoff.