In contrast to the record-breaking, multiyear drought of the early 2010s, the last few years have seemed rather lush by comparison. And our lawns and landscapes were grateful.
But, in fact, our area has seen below-average rainfall for several years, and it’s getting worse. Since June 2020, our area has received less than 40 percent of normal rainfall. As expected, the Edwards Aquifer level has also dropped, triggering Stage 2 watering rules for the first time since 2018.
Stage 2 means landscape watering with a sprinkler, irrigation system or soaker hose is allowed only one day per week, from 7-11 a.m. and 7-11 p.m. Your watering day is determined by the last digit of your street address.
The good news is most lawn grasses and native plants rarely need more than one good, deep watering per week.
Have a few dry spots in your yard that need a little extra help? No problem: Watering with a hand-held hose is allowed any day, any time.
Of course, water waste, such as water running down the street, is never allowed, regardless of the current drought stage.
“Although SAWS has plenty of water to meet customer demand coming from water projects such as the Vista Ridge Pipeline, our desalination plant and others, city ordinance requires SAWS to enter Stage 2 watering rules when the Edwards Aquifer level is triggered,” said Robert R. Puente, SAWS president/CEO.
“We have worked hard to diversify our water sources to ensure San Antonio is water secure for generations.”
While rain chances don’t look promising for this summer, Texas weather can be full of surprises. If the rains return and the drought stage changes, you can always find the current, complete rules at saws.org/WhenToWater.
For weekly, science-based watering advice and other timely tips, visit GardenStyleSA.com.