WHAT IS MY WATER ALLOTMENT?
You are allowed 3 ½ acre-feet per acre per year. This means that over a year’s time, you are given an amount of water equal to the area of your property (whether it’s a lot or an acre), filled to a depth of 3 ½ feet.
Think of it this way: you can water every other day from April through mid-October. Because plants need more water at the height of summer than Spring and Fall, we ask that in June, July and August, you water to a depth of 1/2”; in April, May, September and October, limit the sprinkling to 3/8” in depth. That way you come out just right.
Your “every other day” allotment for each month of the watering season is:
April May June July August Sept Oct
3/8” 3/8” 1/2” 1/2” 1/2” 3/8” 3/8”
Just a reminder: watering the recommended amount every other day promotes a strong, healthy lawn with good root growth. Watering every day is actually worse for your lawn; and, over-watering could result in an excess water charge for your entire neighborhood.
HOW TO MEASURE THE WATER YOU ARE RECEIVING
Check to make sure sprinkler heads are working properly.
Take four or five round, flat, inch-high tin cans with vertical sides (tuna cans work well for this) and set them around the area that you wish to measure.
Turn on the sprinkler system for 15 minutes.
At the end of that time, collect the cans and measure the depth of water in each. Add the amounts together and divide the total by the number of cans used. Divide that number by fifteen. The result is the number of inches of water per minute that your sprinkler system is putting on that part of the yard or garden.
If the water allotment for a watering day is 1/2”, for example, and your sprinkler system puts out 1/100” of water per minute, you would need to run your sprinklers for only fifty minutes, every other day, to reach the total water allotment.
If you have different kinds of sprinklers on different areas, measure them separately. They probably have different flow rates and need different amounts of watering time.