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The summer of 2020 has seen a significant increase in water demand from City residents. The City recently set daily pumping records nearing capacity on some days. The wells are pumping 3 to 4 times the winter demand, which tells us that it is being used mostly for irrigation. In response, City parks are reducing consumption and irrigating on alternate days except for areas of Lakeside Park and Browns Park.
A new well is planned for 2021 and will provide needed redundancy. Rather than institute watering restrictions like surrounding cities, we are asking everyone to help conserve water use. Conservation can be achieved in many ways, including the installation of water saving devices and reducing irrigation. Please consider:
Here are a few tips from the University of Minnesota Extension’s website at www.extension.umn.edu/lawncare/water-saving-strategies-home-lawns
Consider operating irrigation controllers in manual mode and turn the controller on only when your lawn shows signs of stress.
Set mower higher (3 inches or greater) and fertilize to reduce stress during dry and hot periods.
Set irrigation programs to water during the morning hours. Watering during the heat of the day reduces the amount of water absorbed by the soil and made available to plants.
Rain sensors are common. Over the past decade, “smart” irrigation controllers, soil moisture sensors and more efficient sprinklers have also been developed.
Recycling water for irrigation requires proper design of water storage and separation to supply the water to irrigation sprinklers. Rain barrels allow you to reuse rain water to irrigate your landscape plants and garden.
If you reseed, consider using fine fescues (need less water) and tall fescue (deep root system).