Ways to conserve water in your garden:
Mulch planting beds with newspaper, leaves, bark, or wood chips. Mulches retain soil moisture and improve soil quality
Water your plantings with a soaker hose or a drip irrigation system. Less water evaporates this way than with a sprinkler, and you target your watering.
Use a timing device with any watering system. Water only in early mornings or late evenings.
Avoid watering on windy days.
Don’t water the gutter – direct all sprinkler heads away from sidewalks and driveways.
Use “wasted” water for your plants. A rain barrel or cistern that captures rainfall from your roof is a great garden reservoir. In some areas, gray water – water from bathing or washing clothes – can legally be diverted to garden use.
Plant native species which are drought-tolerant, require less water, and attract native insects, which in turn will attract native birds. http://content.yardmap.org/explore is Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s site to identify the plants and insects for your region.
Group similar water usage plants together.
Consider reducing turf grass areas and plant with drought-tolerant species and xeriscape landscaping.
For bird-friendly yards and gardens: National Wildlife Federation, Garden for Wildlife http://www.nwf.org/How-to-Help/Garden-for-Wildlife.aspx
Check out these sites for more water usage facts and suggestions on how you can help conserve water in your everyday life: glendaleaz.com/waterconservation, wateruseitwisely.com, srpnet.com/wateradvice and http://www.epa.gov/greenhomes/ConserveWater.htm
MAKE IT PERSONAL AND BE PART OF THE SOLUTION!