Now that summer is here, that typically means one of two things for your average yard: either you will have a brown lawn and save money on your water bill, or you’ll have a beautiful, green yard and an enormous water bill to match.
But there’s a third way. Here are a few solutions to keeping your yard looking nice during the summer without spending a lot of money on water.
1. Invest in A Smart Irrigation System
Okay, we’re a little biased. But it’s true! Smart sprinkler systems like Rachio Smart Sprinkler Controllers can help ensure you only water when your plants need it. We take your soil type, location, sun exposure, plant type, and more into consideration and use trusted irrigation science to make sure your plants get exactly the amount of water they need. Plus, we’ll make sure you don’t water when it rains or it is too windy outside. You could see up a ton of savings on your summer water bill when your lawn is sustainably watered.
2. Opt for Drought Resistant Plants
Even if you are not experiencing the effects of the drought, using drought resistant plants in your garden can help save water. You aren’t limited to just cacti either. There are many beautiful drought resistant plants. Here are a few to check out:
- Lewisia cotyledon ‘Sunset Strain’
- Lavandula multifida
- Sedum rupestre’Angelina’
- Sedum spurium’Voodoo’
- Agastache rugosa
- Helictotrichon sempervirens
3. Add Mulch
Adding mulch to your garden beds is a simple, yet often overlooked step toward a healthier yard. Mulch can give your beds a nutrient boost and reduce your water use by 25-50%! Mulch helps increase water infiltration, water retention, root growth, and discourages weeds, which in turn allows grass to stay healthy with less water. For best results, add mulch in late spring and early fall.
4. Weed Often
Frequent weeding is a necessary evil so you don’t want to waste money watering weeds. Pull those weeds you would rather do without so your yard gets the most out of every drop of water.
5. Group Similar Plants Together
Different plants have different water needs. Try to organize your landscape in a way that groups plants together by their varied water needs. Once your plants are organized, then you can use a smart irrigation system to control how much water each section or zone receives. Already established your plants? Perhaps some plants can be relocated in another area for optimized watering.
6. Take Inspiration from Earlier Times
It was so common for earlier generations to reuse their gently used water or to collect rain water for gardening needs. These two simple tasks can still be done today without much effort. My uncle lives about an hour from me and has even stricter drought restrictions, but he also has an HOA. A brown lawn just isn’t an option, but keeping it green will earn him several water usage penalties. He simply started placing a bucket next to him when he showers and then uses it after to water some areas of his lawn. This little bit of water does add up and helped lower his bill about 7-10%, while still keeping his yard nice. Be sure to check local restrictions before rounding up your gently-used water, as some city ordinances do not allow rainwater collection.
7. Take Your Savings Inside
Outdoor savings aren’t the only answer. There are ways to save in every room of your house. Check out this piece by MoneyCrashers to take those water saving tactics from your grass roots to the kitchen!
Written by Ashley Eneriz for MoneyNing and legally licensed through the Matcha publisher network. Edited by Laura Bauman and Sarah Menz for Rachio. Please direct all licensing questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Featured image provided by Petar Tonchev