Drought got you down?

  • August 16, 2017

  • By Jessica Woods

  • Posted In: Water Spot

I recently saw a newsletter article by Brad Wier, with San Antonio Water System’s Conservation program that I thought very applicable to us as well. I’m borrowing heavily from it with my blog today.

For many homeowners it’s the norm to use more water on their landscapes in July, August, and September. Although the reason seems obvious — hot and dry months take a visual toll on grass — that’s not why customers double their water use in the summer.

The reason for the high bill comes down to sprinkler programming: adding a second start time to the existing program so the entire system runs both morning and evening.  It’s a perfectly valid thing to do; but it has the effect of automatically doubling your water consumption, with a similar effect on your bill.

Instead of running the entire system twice, run only the zones that actually need it. Remember, some sprinklers can run 20 gallons per minute, or more!  Before you turn them up, determine which zones actually need more water.

Which are your critical zones? Hint: it’s not all of them. Typically, it’s just the grass in full afternoon sun that’s under the most stress, especially if it’s St. Augustine. This might be a single sprinkler station; an extra 10 minutes here may solve the entire problem by targeting the extra water exactly where it’s needed.

Here’s a few places in the landscape that don’t typically need extra water, even in August:

  • Landscape beds
  • The grass sprinklers in the shade under live oaks
  • The garbage cans and the AC condensers
  • The sides of the house
  • The backyard
  • Drip lines (Remember, drip delivers a week’s worth of water directly to the roots in a single cycle; no need to run these more than once per week.

All of this saved run time really adds up when it comes to the bill. When in doubt, don’t change your program. If you need help decoding the sprinkler controller, call or email the Water Conservation staff for a free consultation (if you are a direct City of Round Rock water customer) at 512-671-2872 or email jwoods@roundrocktexas.gov

And remember, if you want a landscape that doesn’t get so crispy in August, it’s better to use shade and landscaping than grass and water.  Add a layer of mulch to bare areas, around trees, shrubs, and in beds.

Would you like to supersize that? Uh, no

Round Rock is a fast-growth community, and has been for decades. To keep pace, we regularly need to beef up spending for core services such as public safety, parks and transportation. But we’re not building a Dagwood,  mindlessly adding extra layers of cold cuts and cheese slices … just because.  Before we add new positions we […]

Tax rate increase easier to stomach when you realize you voted for it

The property tax rate proposed in the City’s $330 million fiscal 2018 budget is higher than last year’s. Lest you think we’re on a feeding frenzy of spending, know that most of the increase is needed to support bond projects voters approved in 2013. The proposed rate is 43.000 cents per $100 of valuation. That’s an increase of 2.7 […]

Roadfood: How we feed the Transportation beast

If you were to ask residents what leaves a bad taste in their mouths when it comes to local issues, traffic would certainly be the most common response. We get it. We drive in it, too. The good news is we have a veritable smorgasbord of resources to address this vexing problem. Mix them all […]

A great meal starts with the right ingredients

  • July 25, 2017

  • By Will Hampton

  • Posted In: The Quarry

The City of Round Rock is regularly recognized for its outstanding work , including fiscal stewardship . With this year’s budget proposal , we’re sharing the secret of Round Rock’s Recipe for Success — strategic planning fortified by a heaping helping of fiscal responsibility. Over the next month, we’ll be serving up a prix fixe menu of information about the fiscal 2018 proposed […]

Irrigation Rebates can Help you Reduce this Summer

Can you believe it’s July already?  July marks Smart Irrigation Month , and as I have in years past, I’m going to focus on providing you some tips to reduce your water use, or at least help you not waste water this July.  And, ideally, we’ll get some rain, which will help in reducing water use too!! July […]

Police Department improves safety measures during encounters with canines

  • June 22, 2017

  • By Kristin Brown

  • Posted In: The Quarry

The following article was written by Angelique Meyers, Public Information Officer for the Police Department, and published in by the Department of Justice’s e-newsletter, Community Policing Dispatch. Law enforcement agencies across the country have been under high criticism from the public for negative and sometimes fatal outcomes when police encounter dogs in the community. In a few […]

Cool spots in Round Rock to beat the summer heat

  • June 20, 2017

  • By Austin Ellington

  • Posted In: The Quarry

Looking for the perfect spot to cool off with the kids on these hot summer days? We’ve got you covered with a waterpark, pools and a hometown splash pad! 1. Rock’N River Waterpark (3300 Palm Valley Blvd.; inside Old Settlers Park) The Rock’N River Water Park went through a multi-million dollar renovation in 2016! The […]

Add Mulch for a Mountain of Benefits

Mulching the bare soil around plants is a major part of basic water conservation and for the health of the plant and soil.  It should be the last step when new planting is done.  I’m sure you know that a healthy layer of mulch keeps weeds from growing, helps reduce water loss due to evaporation, […]

Residents weigh in on zoning issues for Kalahari project

More than 140 people attended open houses held May 9 and May 18 at Ridgeview Middle School to provide their input on the Kalahari Resort project . We really appreciate the feedback received from folks. It will help inform the Planned Unit Development (PUD) zoning for the 351-acre site. Attendees were able to ask questions and offer comments to City planners, transportation staff, public […]