BY ANGELINA MARTIN
After four years of drought, homeowners in California have had to get creative in their water conservation ways, and Turlock residents are no different. Luckily, there are many ways that a yard can beat the heat and stay hydrated while still following water laws and regulations.
According to The Greenery Nursery Marketing and Events Manager Adria Afferino, the lawn is where many people waste the largest amount of water. There are numerous steps one can take to reduce water usage on lawns, such as reducing the area of the lawn or, if the lawn is no longer necessary, converting it to a patio area. Making smart decisions with your water can help conserve as well.
“It’s really about being responsible,” said Afferino. “Don’t turn on your sprinkler system and then not monitor it, and make sure to adjust the system according to water regulations.”
To keep lawns green while still following the City of Turlock’s watering schedule, Afferino suggests watering deeper and longer on days that are allowed.
“A lot of water over a long period of time encourages deep roots,” said Afferino. “Grass roots go down as far as 10 feet, so you need depth of irrigation.”
It is also recommended that lawns are fertilized organically, rather than with fertilizers that use ammonium sulfate. Organic fertilizers require less water and improve the water capacity of the soil, resulting in less water used. Keeping the lawn’s grass as long as possible helps as well – it allows the blades of grass to shade the lawn, reducing moisture use.
For those who would like to conserve water by replacing their current landscape with drought-friendly plants, Afferino suggests shopping The Greenery Nursery’s section called California Friendly. Also available for water-conscious gardeners are desert, Southwestern and Australian native plants that all do extremely well with little water and high temperatures
“There are hand-chosen plants that can easily handle the two-day water restrictions, or even less, and still look really great,” said Afferino.
The Greenery Nursery is located 742 E. Olive Ave. and is open Monday through Saturday from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.