Well, if you hadn’t yet heard, the City is now under mandatory water restrictions! I am personally not a fan of the word “mandatory” as it elicits the repsonse that you now have to do something…in this case water your yard. This is a constant struggle, when to use the “M” word and when not to. Too many times, mandatory water restrictions cause water use to increase in a community or town. That’s exactly what we don’t want to happen! Folks think that since it’s their day to water, they’d better do it, or else it’s x many days before they have the opportunity to water again. But, hopefully, common sense will prevail…especially with all the rain this week!
With the cooling temperatures, onset of Autumn, and regular rainfall, twice per week watering is more than enough. Quite frankly, it’s too much for many areas like native plants beds and shady turf areas. Of course, hand-watering is permitted at any time for any area that may need some extra help. Properties that use rainwater to irrigate with are exempt from the water restrictions; so that’s another good reason to collect and use rainwater!
We have been asked why it has taken Round Rock “so long” to enact mandatory restrictions, which isn’t an easy or quick answer. It stems from a variety of factors, with the two main ones being: 1. our Drought Contingency Plan (in Chapter 44) states that the City will enter into Stage 1 when Lake Georgetown reaches a level of 770′, currently the lake is at 773′, so we still haven’t met the first criteria for restrictions; 2. Our overall City monthly water usage has been low this year, much lower than use in 2012 or 2011, or 2009. We’ve seen monthly usage very similar to 2010, which was a wet year. This means our customers (our residences) have already been using water efficiently at their properties.
So, if you choose to water once the rain has all passed, you may hand-water at any time you choose. Homes with an even address water days are Thursdays and Sundays; homes with an odd-address are Wednesdays and Saturdays. All commercial and multifamily properties days are Tuesdays and Fridays. No irrigation is allowed between 10am – 7pm.
The photo is Lake Georgetown, Round Rock’s main water source.