Water Conservation Shawna Trarbach City of Lawrence Stormwater Quality Technician
Rain Barrels • Xeriscape • Rain Gardens • Native and Drought resistant plants • Around the house tips
Rain Barrels • Collects rain water from off of your roof • Water can be used for almost anything, just don’t drink it • 1” of rainfall produces .6 gallon of water per square foot. This results in 600-700 gallons of water flowing from the average house during a 1” rain.
Rain Barrel Setup Downspout When setting up and building your barrel it is important to keep in mind where you will put it. This will help determine where you will place the overflow hose and hose bibb. Water Filter Overflow Hose Bibb Raised Platform Garden Hose
Rain Barrels Multiple barrels can be linked together to increase storage or multiple barrels can be set up on different downspouts.
Rain Barrel Maintenance • Periodically remove debris from filter or screen • Check overflow hose for clogs • Inspect tank for crack or buildup of debris in the bottom • Check tank fittings for overflow hose and hose bibb • If mosquiots become a problem, add 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil to water to form film on top • Winterize your barrel by either storing it inside a garage or shed or store it upside down in its location so it will fully drain and remain relatively clean of debris
Xeriscape • Refers to landscaping and gardening in ways that reduce or eliminate the need for supplemental water from irrigation
Xeriscape Benefits • Saves Water • Less Maintenance • No Fertilizers or Pesticides • Reduces Pollution • Provides Wildlife Habitat
7 Principals of Xeriscaping • Water Conservation • Soil Improvement • Creates Limited Turf Areas • Use Appropriate Plants • Mulch • Irrigate • Maintain your landscape
Rain Gardens Rain Gardens are a landscaped area that receives stormwater runoff from roofs, driveways, sidewalks, parking lots and compacted areas. Compared to a conventional lawn, Rain Gardens can allow 30% more water to soak into the ground.
Benefits of Rain Gardens • Filters runoff pollutants • Deters flooding impacts • Conserves water • Creates bird/butterfly habitat • Increases aesthetic benefits • Recharge local groundwater • Improve water quality • Protects rivers and streams • Remove standing water in your yard • Reduce garden maintenance
Native and Drought Resistant Plants Rudbeckia, Black Eye Susan Achillea, Yarrow Blue Flag Iris Coreopsis, Tickseed
Native and Drought Resistant Plants Asclepias, Butterfly Flower Salvia, Sage Euphorbia, Spurge Torch Lily, Kniphofia
Native and Drought Resistant Plants Little Blue Stem Buffalo Grass Kentucky Bluegrass SideoatsGrama
Around the Home Tips • Check faucets and pipes for leaks • A small drip from the faucet can waste 20 gallons of water per day, larger ones can waste hundreds.
Around the Home Tips • Check your toilets for leaks. • Put a little food coloring in your toilet tank. If, without flushing, the color begins to appear in the bowl within 30 minutes, you have a leak.
Around the Home Tips • Take shorter showers. • A four minute shower uses approximately 20 to 40 gallons of water. One way to cut down that time is to turn off the shower while soaping up and then to turn it back on to rinse. • Turn off the water after you wet your tooth brush.
Around the Home Tips • Keep a bottle of water in the fridge. • Running tap water to cool it off for drinking is wasteful. Another option is to use ice cubes if you prefer cold drinking water.
Around the Home Tips • Put a layer of mulch around trees and plants • Mulch will slow evaporation of moisture while discouraging weed growth. Adding 2-4 inches of organic material will increase the ability of the soil to retain moisture.
Around the Home Tips • Water during the early parts of the day; avoid watering when it is windy. • Early morning is generally better than dusk since it helps prevent the growth of fungus. Early morning watering helps reduce water loss due to evaporation and it is also the best defence against slugs and other garden pests. Try not to water when it’s windy, wind can blow sprinklers off target and speed up evaporation.
Around the Home Tips • Don’t let the hose run while washing your car. • Clean your car using a pail of soapy water. Use the hose only for rinsing and use a spray nozzle for higher efficiency. This simple practice can save as much as 150 gallons of water. • Use a broom, not a hose, to clean driveways and sidewalks.