Food & Garden
Pg 9 - The Sunshine Express
2012 July
Official Smart Irrigation Month
* Install a rain shutoff
Grow beautiful landscapes with less water
device. Rain sensors
(ARA) - Hot and dry weather provides reason
prevent irrigation
enough to think about simple ways to save water
systems from run-
while still enjoying beautiful yards and gardens.
ning when irrigation
You may even find that your efforts to be water
is unnecessary. These
smart may improve the health and appearance of
devices can reduce
your plants.
irrigation water usage
During the summer, an estimated 30 to 70 per-
by up to 35 percent and
cent of household water use takes place outdoors,
help extend irrigation
depending on your local climate. Up to half of
system life. Sprinkler
the water used to irrigate yards and gardens is
systems should never
unnecessarily lost due to evaporation, wind drift,
run in the rain and rain
watering non-plant areas due to poorly aligned
sensors can put an end
sprinklers and simply overwatering.
to those wasteful situ-
With some easy steps, you can reduce your water
bill, foster attractive spaces for you and others to
* Utilize "smart" tech-
enjoy and help protect water supplies for future
nology. Climate or soil
generations. Do something good for your bank
moisture sensors and
account, your yard and your planet by following
controllers evaluate
these smart tips.
weather or soil mois-
Plant smart
ture conditions and au-
* Landscape to suit your lot and your climate.
tomatically adjust the
Choose grass or plants with low water require-
irrigation schedule so
ments that will thrive in your local climate. Con-
your landscape always
sider sun and shade areas, slopes and plant sizes
receives the appropri-
for optimum growth. Group plants with similar
ate amount of water.
water needs close together and separate lawn
The water savings can
areas from planting beds.
be significant and the
* Keep soil healthy. Aeration helps improve water
convenience of these
penetration and adding compost or fertilizer
self-adjusting control-
maintains plant health so they use water more
lers is another great
efficiently. Mulch well around plants, bushes and
trees. Two to 4 inches of mulch reduces evapo-
* Consider drip or
ration, moderates soil temperatures and helps
micro-irrigation for
control weeds that compete for water.
shrubs and ground
* Maintain your yard regularly. Weed, prune and
covers. Rather than
mow as needed. A well-maintained yard uses
spray large areas with
water more effectively.
above-ground sprin-
Water wisely
klers, drip irrigation
* Set sprinklers to only water plants, not your
utilizes emission de-
driveway, sidewalk, patio or other hardscapes.
vices to deliver desired
* Water at the best time. Watering during the heat
volumes of water to
of the day causes high evaporation loss. Watering
for everyone to enjoy while conserving one of our
particular locations at or near plant root zones.
early in the morning when winds are calm and
most precious natural resources. For more infor-
Water drips slowly from emitters either onto the
temperatures are cooler minimizes evaporation by
mation and helpful tips, visit www.smartirriga-
soil surface or below ground. Less water is lost
as much as 30 percent.
due to wind and evaporation as a result, and
* Adapt watering to the season. Adjust how much
weeds can also be reduced.
A Summer Food Fest
you water based on seasonal weather and chang-
* Look for rebates. Many water utilities offer
Snowmass Culinary and Arts Festival July 20-22
ing conditions. Weather-based timers are available
rebates for certain water-efficient products. Before
The Snowmass Culinary & Arts Festival brings
and can make such adjustments automatically.
upgrading your system, check with your local
foodies, wine connoisseurs, and art lovers alike
Maintain and upgrade automatic irrigation sys-
water provider for opportunities for free and dis-
together in a premiere visual and delectable feast.
counted products.
It features celebrity chefs, a juried art exhibit with
* Inspect the system regularly. Check for leaks
Consider an irrigation professional
regionally and nationally recognized artists, food &
that can waste water and cause other problems.
* Have your irrigation system audited. Hire a
presentation expert panels, and a Palette of Pairings
Also look for broken or clogged sprinklers that no
qualified professional to conduct a system review
featuring specialty foods with wines & spirits, all
longer operate efficiently.
and uniformity test to ensure areas are being wa-
set in the scenic mountain splendor of Snowmass
* Check the pressure. Proper water pressure
tered evenly and appropriately, and make neces-
Village, Colorado. Extend your stay and set out to
encourages more uniform water distribution and
sary adjustments. Certified irrigation professionals
explore easy or extreme hiking and biking trails,
better sprinkler operation. Fixed spray-type sprin-
have the training and skills to offer insight into
take in a free & festive Thursday night concert on
klers work well around 25 to 30 psi while sprin-
unique watering challenges and can be located at
the Hill, and visit world-renowned Aspen and its
klers with moving streams of water work well at
cultural delights right next door. For more infor-
40 to 45 psi. Water pressure regulation devices are
mation call 800.766.9627
easily added to valves to control a whole irrigation
* Upgrade or invest in a new irrigation system. A
A Summer Laugh Fest
zone or can be part of individual sprinklers.
water-efficient system requires a good design,
One day while driving home from his fishing trip
quality components,
in the pouring rain, a man got a flat tire outside
proper installation
a monastery. A monk came out and invited him
and maintenance.
inside to have dinner and spend the night. The
Licensed and certified
motorist accepted. That night he had a wonderful
professionals can of-
dinner of fish and chips. He decided to compliment
fer expert advice and
the chef. Entering the kitchen, he asked the cook,
"Are you the fish friar?" "No," the man replied,
Although July is of-
"I'm the chip monk."
ficially designated
Smart Irrigation
A customer was bothering the waiter in a restau-
Month by the Irriga-
rant. First, he asked that the air conditioning be
tion Association and
turned up because he was too hot, then he asked it
a number of states, it
be turned down because he was too cold, and so on
makes sense to pro-
for about half an hour.
mote smart irrigation
Surprisingly, the waiter was very patient, he
every month of the
walked back and forth and never once got angry.
year. Each individual
So finally, a second customer asked him why he
effort makes a dif-
didn't throw out the pest.
ference that results
"Oh, I really don't care or mind," said the waiter
in more beautiful,
with a smile. "We don't even have an air condi-
productive and water-
efficient landscapes