Water is one of our greatest natural resources; however it is one which we all have taken for granted for as long as we can remember. A few simple tips can do much to conserve water and cut down the use of this precious resource, both within the home and outside in your lawn and garden areas.
Water conservation not only saves water, but helps control water pollution. 2/3 of the water used in the home occurs in the bathroom with toilet flushing and baths and showers. Most of that simply adds extra burden on sewage treatment plants.
How to conserve water in your home
Displace water in toilet bowl by filling plastic bottles with water and placing them inside the tank. You simply don’t need as much flushing water as you have been using, in most cases.
Shorten your showers considerably. One method is to use water initially to lather; turn it off until you are ready to rinse. This saves both water and energy.
Shaving, teeth brushing and hair washing can take vast amounts of water. Turn the water on and off as you need it – don’t leave it running.
Washing machines, dishwashers, and kitchen sinks are the other major source of water users in the home. The idea here is to avoid cleaning in small amounts. Wash only full loads. This can result in surprising water conservation.
Leaky faucets are a major source of water waste. Take an hour this Saturday to check against worn washers or fittings. Use shutoff valves when you are going to be away from the house for any length of time.
Watering indoor plants unwisely can waste water. Water infrequently but more deeply and loosen the soil in containers occasionally.
How to conserve water outside
Here are several simple tips that will result in tremendous water savings outdoors:
• Water infrequently but deeper.
• Mulch the soil surface to cut down on water evaporation.
• Move container plants to areas away from excess sun.
• Find out about drought tolerant plants.
• Find out about installing a drip irrigation system. This slow watering system can save up to 60 percent of all water used in the lawn and garden areas.
• Water early in the-day and spike or aerate lawns to insure maximum penetration.
• Don’t be a gutter flooder.
• Discourage water competition from weeds – keep them pulled.
• Group together plants that have similar water needs.
• Re-using household or “gray water” on landscapes is a proven method of conserving water. However, there are inherent dangers in the form of bleaches, additives or detergents you may unknowingly put on your greenery. Before you consider this form of water conservation, consult your local nursery.
• During the drought, watering the backyard doesn’t have to be an extravagance. The judicious use of water can guarantee water conservation.