VERNON - Heavier water restrictions are being imposed on Greater Vernon residents.
The North Okanagan Regional District announced stage one restrictions for Greater Vernon Water customers Tuesday, July 7.
Water reservoirs filled early this year and stopped spilling on June 10, water sustainability coordinator Jennifer Miles says in a media release.
“This means we are using stored water earlier than normal. Combine that with a hot, dry June causing everyone to irrigate more has pushed us into stage one restrictions,” Miles says.
Many of the stage one restrictions are the same as those under 'normal' restrictions, but customers will notice some changes, as well as increased monitoring of outdoor watering.
The regional district is hoping the restrictions will encourage residents to cut water use by 10 per cent. Miles notes it's a good opportunity for residents to think about waterwise or xeriscape landscaping.
Residents with odd addresses can water Tuesday, Thursday and/or Saturday, while those with even addresses can water Wednesday, Friday and/or Sunday. The regional district reminds customers that most lawns only need water once a week to remain healthy.
Automatic timer irrigation is allowed between 12 a.m. and 6 a.m., while manual sprinklers (moved by hand) are permitted between 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. to 12 a.m.
Drip irrigation, which was permitted any time under normal watering restrictions, is only allowed from 7 p.m. to 10 a.m. Customers using a watering can or hose with a spring-loaded nozzle may hand water any time.
No domestic or commercial outdoor watering is allowed on Mondays, or between 10 a.m. and 7 p.m. every other day.
Miles says most landscapes are over-irrigated, leading to lawns becoming addicted to water. Healthy lawns only need 2.5 centimetres of water a week, which can be measured by putting an upside-down Frisbee or pie plate under your sprinkler, Miles says. Running a sprinkler for a maximum of 20 minutes in any one spot is a good rule of thumb to give water time to absorb into the soil.
More details on restrictions, and waterwise gardening tips can be found on the regional district’s website.
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