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​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Where do you use the most water?

Did you know that ​up to 70% of household water use in the Valley is outdoors? ​The good news is that it is easy to increase the efficiency of water use outdoors.​​​​

 1. Give plants only as much water, as often as they need.​  Plants suffer from overwatering as much as they do from underwatering. Figuring out the water amount and frequency needed by your plants is as easy as 1-2-3. Read the Landscape Watering by the Numbers​ guide to learn the 1-2-3 method or request a print version. Consider that automatic irrigation systems, such as sprinklers and drip, can be a time saver, as long as they are efficiently designed and maintained. ​As they are not native to the Sonoran Desert, lawns require extra care, water, and maintenance. Read tips about how to care for a lawn in Phoenix or visit the Interactive Lawn Watering Guide to learn how long and how often to water your lawn. For your landscape plants, use the Interactive Plant Watering Guide​ to figure out run times and how often to water.

2. Maintain high quality outdoor water-using e​quipment and detect leaks. ​The average home loses more than 10,000 gallons to leaks. As they get worse outdoors, they can attract mosquitoes, damage equipment, and drown plants. Find out common places leaks occur outdoors​ and then download the Smart Home Water Guide to learn how to find and fix leaks that are draining your budget. ​You can also request a print version of the Smart Home Water Guide. Some Phoenix yards have swimming pools and other water-using equipment​ that can potentially leak or operate with antiquated high-water-using technologies.​​ 

3. Plan for landscape success. ​If you can, start with a well-designed landscape plan to avoid costly mistakes and to increase the function and beauty of your outdoor spaces. Many of us "inherit" landscapes that have a well-established  history and unique circumstances. You can still increase the efficiency of such spaces by observing how your landscape works and identifying goals for the future. Make small changes over time to make your landscape more sustainable and more fitting for your household. Slowly replace water-intensive, high-maintenance plants with desert-friendly plants, and consider using xeriscape​ to design your desert landscape. If you are planning to make substantial changes to your landscape, reque​st free literature by mail​

4. Care for your landscape, care for your community.​ Each tree that you plant or care for not only benefits your home but it increases the health of your community as well. Shade trees and other plants benefit the environment by improving air quality and reducing stormwater runoff. They can also help reduce energy costs by providing passive shade for your home. Learn how to protect your investment in a tree with these helpful resources:

swimming pool surrounded by desert landscaping.Save big; save outdoors.

Where can I find out more?