Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Make Your Yard Water Smart This Spring!

Being Water Smart simply means using only as much water as you need by being aware of your water usage. The following programs will help your yard flourish while you save water and money! For more watering tips, click here.

 

Texas SmartScape Month

March is Texas SmartScape Month! This spring, try out some water-efficient landscaping by using the regionally-developed Texas SmartScape Landscape Design Tools online. To discover nearby plant sales or learn more about native and adaptive plants, check out the Texas SmartScape website.

 

 

 

 

Weekly Watering Advice

Sign up for weekly water advice localized to your address based on weather patterns. You’ll receive an alert every week to tell you how much to water your yard based on how your sprinkler system is set up and the prior week’s rainfall! To sign up for weekly watering advice, click here.

 

EyeOnWater 

Control water use from the palm of your hand with the EyeOnWater app! Every water meter in the City has technology installed that reads individual water use data wirelessly, giving you the ability to detect leaks in your home, ensure the sprinklers are operating as intended and more! To sign up for an EyeOnWater account, click here.

 

W.I.S.E. Guys Sprinkler Evaluation

Receive a free sprinkler evaluation and receive a rebate up to a $200 on your water bill for water-conserving repairs you make! Now is the time to fix up that irrigation system – you don’t want to wait until that high water bill hits in June to find out your system may have a leak. To learn more about the W.I.S.E. Guys program, click here.

 

It’s National Gardening Day in Southlake!

 

National Gardening Day is on Sunday, April 14 which is a great time for you to get out in the yard, plant seeds and allow Mother Nature to work!

The City of Southlake has partnered with the North Central Texas Council of Governments and various cities across the DFW Metroplex to create the Texas SmartScape campaign. Texas SmartScape involves plant sales, landscape design tools, inspiration photos and more.

Not sure what to plant? Texas SmartScape has an online plant database that can you help you find plants that are beneficial for this type of environment.

The great thing about planting native to the region is that the plants are suited to the climate, soil and precipitation. It also improves water quality by reducing runoff. Another plus to planting plants native or adapted to Texas is that they require less water, pesticides and fertilizers.

“With the native plants using much less water than other types of plants, water bills tend to go down as this water is conserved,” said Environmental Coordinator Ashley Carlisle, “These plants also help filter out any pollutants that might be in stormwater, so it’s a two for one win for Southlake residents.”

Join the celebration with other gardeners across Texas on April 14 and plant something new in your garden to bring out the natural beauty of your landscape.

To learn more about Texas SmartScape and the City’s water conservation programs click here.

Southlake’s 2019 Water Conservation Plan, Watering Schedule and Helpful Programs

The permanent water schedule will continue according to the 2019 Water Conservation Plan. City Council recently reviewed the first reading of the new plan at the April 2 City Council meeting.

Under the water conservation plan, Southlake Water Utilities Customers can operate their landscape irrigation systems at least twice per week any time before 10 a.m. and after 6 p.m.

There is no cost to adopt this plan and it includes other cost savings methods as well, such as reducing or delaying the need for new supplies, pipeline delivery, capacity improvements and the use of new cellular technology which allows users to review their water consumption 24/7 and detect for leaks inside the home through an EyeOnWater App.

Residents can also take advantage of the City’s W.I.S.E. Guys Program, where a licensed irrigator will be assigned to conduct a free irrigation evaluation to determine rather or not there are leaks outside of the home.

The Water Conservation Plan is required by the Texas Administrative Code. The plan is updated and resubmitted on a five-year cycle. Since the last updated was conducted in April 2014, the next update falls this year on May 1.

Click on the links to more about the City’s water conservation programs and EyeOnWater app video

 

 

Southlake Watering Schedule: When can I water and how much should I water?

It’s hot outside! We all like green lawns and beautiful landscaping, and in this heat, they need a little extra help to stay hydrated. While it can be tempting to water every day, the City does have a watering schedule that must be followed.

Here is the current watering schedule to help you remember when you can water.

New Watering Schedule Graphic

The best time to water is in the early morning hours (Midnight – 4 a.m.) so water has the chance to soak into the soil.  However, our watering schedule does allow you to water on your designated days between 6 p.m. and 10 a.m. It’s also a good idea to establish a watering pattern for your landscape. The watering schedule does that for you.

“One of the best pieces of advice I can give to maintain a green, healthy landscape, is to consistently deeply water only a couple of times a week,” says Environmental Coordinator Ashley Carlisle.

Why do we have a watering schedule?

The current watering schedule was adopted under the current Water Conservation Plan in 2014. The plan aims to promote the efficient use of our region’s water resources. One of the ways the City does that is by using a watering schedule.

The growth of Southlake and the entire region in recent years has led to growing demands for water supplies.  Thousands of gallons of water can be used per house per day just to run a sprinkler system – a demand for water use that has a serious effect on water levels during the summer. Diminished water levels can have an impact on not only water pressure throughout the City, but also fire protection for the community.

How much should I water?

Most lawns only need water twice a week. A great resource to help you figure out exactly how much you should water is WaterIsAwesome.com. This site, run by Tarrant Regional Water District, offers weekly advice based on rainfall from the prior week.  You can sign up for alerts to be notified on how much water to use weekly. The site gives recommendations for the amount of water to use, zone runtimes, the number of cycles per zone and the total runtime per zone.

If you have specific questions about your irrigation system you can set up a free irrigation evaluation with the W.I.S.E. Guys program. A licensed irrigator will come to perform an evaluation on your sprinkler system with you and will provide you with personalized information on how your system can be used more efficiently. You could be eligible for up to a $200 rebate on your water bill for any repair work done.

If you have any questions about the watering schedule, contact Southlake Water Utilities Customer Service at (817) 748-8051.

Fix a Leak Week: March 19-25

March 19-25, 2018 is designated as national Fix a Leak Week, a week aimed at promoting water waste awareness and what you can do to save water and money.

Did you know that in Southlake, there is a 1 in 13 chance your home has a leak? Leaky faucets, running toilets, old and worn out plumbing fixtures and faulty irrigation controllers contribute to an average of 200 gallons of water waste a day. That much water waste can seriously impact your pocketbook.

Fix a Leak Week encourages you to take control of your water use by checking places where leaks typically occur. The premise is simple: Take ten minutes. Check the faucets, toilets, dishwasher and other sources for potential leaks, and then take the necessary steps to fix the leak:

  • Sign up for EyeOnWater EyeOnWater allows you to view your water usage by the hour, and you can even set up alerts to let you know if you might have a leak in your home.
  • Check your faucets: A leaky faucet that drips at the rate of one drip per second wastes more than 3,000 gallons in a year. Replace worn washers and gaskets.
  • Check your bathroom: Check shower heads for age-related leaks. Look for decayed or broken “flappers” in toilets. Not sure what that is? It’s the rubber piece that opens up to let the water flow from the tank into the bowl when you pull down the toilet handle.

If you are near Southlake Town Hall the week of March 19, stop by the lobby on the second floor and enjoy informational displays, handouts and free items designed to reduce water consumption in your home.

For more information about other water conservation tips, call (817) 748-8638.

For general information about Public Works Operations, call (817) 748-8082.

Facts on Leaks Infographic

Make My Day Better: Find Those Leaks!

Make your day better by getting a free kit that helps spot common household leaks.

Through the “Make My Day Better” program, Southlake Water Utilities gives kits to help find leaks in your home. By being able to detect where a leak is, you can fix it, conserving water. Conserving your water use can lead to lowering your water bill.

Here is what each kit comes with:

  • Three leak-detection dye tablets
  • A “Toilet Tank Bank”
  • A moisture meter
  • Shower flow meter bag
  • Fill cycle diverter for your toilet

Not sure what these items are and how to use them? That’s okay! Southlake Water Utilities gives a booklet with each kit that explains everything. These kits are available on the 2nd floor of Town Hall at the Southlake Water Utilities- Customer Service area.

Any questions? Please contact Southlake Water Utilities-Customer Service at (817) 748-8051.

7 Steps to a Smart Yard

Curious about how you can create a beautiful lawn while still saving money on your water bill at the same time?

Texas SmartScapeTM  has developed an all-encompassing landscape program for those that live in North Texas. Here are seven steps you can follow to turn your lawn into a masterpiece!

Step 1: Come to the Southlake Texas SmartScapeTM Plant Sale!  Start your smart yard off right! The City of Southlake has partnered with our local Home Depot to bring you a family parking lot event on April 23rd, 2016 from 8am-12pm. Come sift through many varieties of Texas SmartScapeTM plants, check out informational displays, win prizes, and more!
Backyard-map

Have a plan in mind.

Step 2: Plan and Design! Start with the end in mind. Consider your family’s needs and desires when envisioning your perfect yard, and then look critically at what you already have in your yard. What are the permanent fixtures or restrictions? What plants do you want to keep? Prioritize your  needs and create a plan. It may help to sketch out your ideas.

pathway

Using more soil and less turf can reduce the amount of water used.

Step 3: Less Turf, More Soil! Reducing the amount of turf in your lawn means more money in your pocket because you won’t have to water as much! Add more flower beds instead with SmartScapeTM plants. Try adding large, sweeping curves or pathways to the landscape to make it visually appealing. Adding organic matter is also a key to a solid foundation to help your plants thrive. Compost helps to condition the soil, hold moisture, prevent run-off, reduce erosion, and unlocks nutrients in the soil.

plant search

The Smartscape database offers helpful ideas of suitable North Texas plants.

Step 4: Planting! The SmartScape online plant database can help you find additional plants that are well-suited to the North Texas environment. Native plants are naturally drought-tolerant, as well as disease- and pest-resistant. This will reduce your irrigation, fertilizer, and pesticide requirements. When planning your yard or garden, use a wide range of plants and plant with room for their mature size. When planting or transplanting, remember to water the plant, water the hole, and water the plant in the hole.

Plant-1

Adding mulch helps reduce water evaporation.

  Step 5: Mulch! Regularly adding mulch to maintain about a 3-inch blanket is a good for beds and around trees. Mulch helps reduce evaporation  and cools soils in the summer by up to 10 degrees. It also helps reduce erosion, diseases, and prevents weeds from getting a foothold. Keep in mind  that when it comes to trunks or stems, instead of piling mulch up, you should instead lay it down as a in a shallow bowl shape around the trunk.

sprinklers

Make sure your irrigation system is running efficiently.

  Step 6: Be Water-Wise!  Efficient irrigation will save you a large amount money. The City of Southlake offers a free irrigation audit program,  known as W.I.S.E. guys, to the residents of Southlake. A licensed irrigator will come out to your property and inspect your irrigation system for  inefficiencies and broken parts. If you choose to get your system repaired, the City will provide you with a rebate of up to $200.

garden

Regular maintenance is the key to a beautiful lawn.

Step 7: Maintenance!  Regularity and moderation should guide your maintenance schedule. Avoid excessive pruning as natural beauty softens the landscape. If you chose well-adapted plants for your location, maintenance should be minimal. If you do encounter problems, try cultural, organic, physical, and mechanical means of pest control.

 

Follow these seven steps to create a work of art in your yard!

 

Fix A Leak Week is Back!

Tips to fix leaks in your home

The Facts on leaks

March 14-20th, 2016 is designated national Fix a Leak Week, a week aimed at promoting awareness of water waste and what you can do to save water and money!

Did you know that leaky faucets, running toilets, old and worn out plumbing fixtures and faulty irrigation controllers contribute to over 1 trillion gallons of water waste over the course of a year? That much water waste can seriously impact your pocket book!

Fix a Leak Week encourages you to take control of your water use by checking places where leaks typically occur.  Families can save thousands of gallons of water yearly by checking on common leaks and in turn, they can save more than 10% on their water bills.

The Fix a Leak Week premise is simple: Take 10 minutes. Check the faucets, toilets, dishwasher and other sources for potential leaks. Take the necessary steps to fix the leaks and help save approximately 10,000 gallons of water in your home annually.

Here are a few helpful tips to get you started:

  • Check your meter:  Don’t flush the toilet, run the faucet, or use any water for two hours. Check the meter again. If the meter does not read the same, you probably have a leak.
  • Check your faucets: A leaky faucet that drips at the rate of one drip per second wastes more than 3,000 gallons in a year. Replace worn washers and gaskets.
  • In the bathroom: Check shower heads for age-related leaks. Look for decayed or broken “flappers” in toilets. Not sure what that is? It’s the rubber piece that opens up to let the water flow from the tank into the bowl when you pull down the toilet handle.

For additional tips, visit the “Tips and Advice” section of the City’s Water Conservation webpage.

If you’re near Southlake Town Hall the week of March 14th, stop by the lobby on the 2nd floor and enjoy informational displays, handouts, and free items designed to reduce water consumption in your home.

In addition, this year the Public Works Environmental Services division will be hosting an online social media contest for those who learn to fix their own leaks. Tag the City of Southlake in a photo of you fixing a leak with the hashtag #IFixLeaks for a chance to win a free WaterSense labeled showerhead and other prizes!

The Connection Between Water Bills & Irrigation Systems

The City has recently focused on the connection between irrigation systems and their impact on your water bill.  In the second part of the City’s ongoing series Save Tarrant Water, the City has produced a short video which explains how it’s possible for an irrigation system to go through 23-gallons of water per-minute.

Watch the video below to learn more about how your irrigation system can affect your water bill.

Another important factor to think about? Many sprinkler systems are equipped with rain and freeze sensors that react to the weather. But considering that North Texas has seen little rain since June, increased usage on irrigation systems has become apparent.  It’s also important to note that the City of Southlake like other cities has tiered water rates, which charges customers based on their water usage.

In efforts to assist residents with their water bills, the City of Southlake is providing helpful water conservation tips.

To learn more about the City’s conservation efforts, lawn watering tips and the current water conservation conditions, please visit CityofSouthlake.com/Water Conservation.  If you have questions about your bill, please call the Customer Service at 817-748-8051.