WaterSense® is a partnership
        program sponsored by the
        U.S. Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA). Its mission is to protect
the future of our nation's water supply
by promoting and enhancing the mar-
ket for water-efficient products and
services. WaterSense is partnering with
professional certifying organizations
and certified landscape irrigation pro-
fessionals to bring efficient watering
techniques and products to lawns and
gardens across the country.
Association® has
named July Smart
Irrigation Month to provide tips
about smart practices and new tech-
nology. Learn what you can do to
operate your system at peak effi-
ciency throughout the year at
 Watering   Can
   Be  Efficient!
Fine-Tune Your Irrigation System
    to Save Water and Money
                         (866) WTR-SENS (987-7367)
                  www.epa.gov/watersense watersense@epa.gov

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                       For a healthy, drought- and stress-tolerant lawn and landscape, use less water. Adopting
                       water-savvy habits also is essential to maintaining and extending your community's
                       water supply, especially during peak use. Water-efficient habits will result in a healthier
                 lawn and landscape, in addition to conserving water and saving money. With some simple
                 practices and new technology, existing irrigation systems can be made  more efficient-
                 lowering your water bill, reducing run off, and eliminating waste.
Reduce demand. Use native plants in
your landscape—they require less care and
water than ornamental varieties—and
apply mulch around shrubs and garden
plants to reduce evaporation.

Less is more. If you step on your lawn
and the grass springs back, it does not
need to be watered. Watering plants too
much and too frequently results in shallow
roots, weed growth, disease, and fungus.

Seasons change, so  should your
system. Familiarize yourself with the set-
tings on your irrigation
controller and adjust the
watering schedule regular-
ly to conform with season-
al weather conditions.

Play "zone" defense.
Schedule each individual
zone in your irrigation
system to account for the
type of sprinkler, sun or
shade exposure, and the
soil type for the specific
area. The same watering
schedule rarely applies to
all zones in the system.

Make it a date. Inspect
your irrigation system
monthly. Check for leaks,
broken or clogged heads,
and other problems, or
engage an irrigation pro-
fessional to regularly check your system. Clean
micro-irrigation filters as needed.

Get your head adjusted. Correct obstruc-
tions in sprinkler heads that prevent sprinklers
        from distributing water evenly. Keep
        water off pavement and structures.

        Check for WaterSense!
        A certified irrigation
        professional can      WaterSense
        design, install, main-
        tain, or audit your system to ensure
        optimal efficiency using the proper
        amount of water to maintain a
        healthy landscape. Ask if your irriga-
        tion contractor is a WaterSense part-
        ner, which means he or she has been
        certified through a program that
        focuses on water efficiency.
             Get smart. Climate or soil
             moisture sensor-based
             "smart"controllers evaluate
             weather or soil moisture
             conditions, then calculate
             and automatically adjust
             the irrigation schedule to
             meet the specific needs of
             your landscape.

Flip to a switch. Rain shutoff switches,
required by law in many states, turn off your
system in rainy weather and help compensate
for natural rainfall. This inexpensive device
can be retrofitted to almost any system.

Easy  does it. Install low-volume micro-
irrigation for gardens, trees, and shrubs.
Micro-irrigation includes drip (also known as
trickle), micro-spray jets, micro-sprinklers, or
bubbler irrigation to irrigate slowly and min-
imize evaporation, runoff, and overspray.

Watch the clock. Water when the sun is
low or down, winds are calm, and tempera-
tures are cool—between the evening and
early morning—to reduce evaporation. You
can lose as much as 30 percent of water to
evaporation by watering midday.