The truth of how we use water will astound you

Updated August 17, 2020
The truth of how we use water will astound you
There’s a common misconception that most of the water we use at home goes toward household activities like showering, washing dishes, and clothes or flushing the toilet. Thing is, most household water is used outside on our landscapes.

Hot, dry summers and triple-digit temperatures have a huge impact on our water use in the Sacramento region.

An average household uses about 250 gallons of water per day with the majority going toward watering lawns and yards. And, studies show that about 30 percent of water used outdoors is wasted because of overwatering and evaporation.

One way to combat overwatering is by using one or a combination of water saving tactics.  

  • Cycle and soak method. Cycle and soak is a process of running your sprinklers in shorter increments spaced out over a period of time to allow for better absorption by the soil. For example, if you’re running your sprinklers for eight minutes, break the watering cycle into two increments of four minutes, spaced an hour apart. This allows the water to better permeate through the soil and get to where it’s needed.

  • Check before you water. A moisture meter can tell you if your plants need water. Simply push the moisture meter into the soil six to eight inches deep and check the reading. Make sure to check a few different spots in your yard and your potted plants as well; and then water accordingly.

  • Mulch, mulch, mulch! This is one of the most important aspects of keeping the water you apply to your plants in the soil instead of evaporating into the air! Mulching also reduces weed growth and weeds competing with your plants for water.

Learn more facts and tips for using water wisely here.