Preparation for Drought

What You Can Do Now to Prepare for a Drought

  • Aerate the lawn and fill the holes with compost so the water can infiltrate deeper
  • Attach a water efficient spray nozzle to your hose and use it to mist your lawn to build up humidity for a few minutes at the end of the day.
  • Check with your local water agency for possible rebates on low water usage irrigation products
  • Do not use high nitrogen fertilizers during a drought. They encourage growth but the plants will need more water
  • Fix or replace any broken sprinklers and repair leaks
  • If you intend to prune, do so before April or don't prune. Pruning stimulates growth, which needs more water. Existing growth will also provide additional shade to the soil, helping to retain moisture
  • Keep your lawn as healthy as possible.  A healthy lawn will survive better. Many lawns can go very dry and still come back
  • Mow grass (Fescue, Rye, Kentucky Blue Grass) higher (3 inches to 3.5  inches) to promote deeper root growth and hold more moisture
  • Mulch heavily all flower and soil beds. Mulch helps keep water in the soil.  Do not use rocks/gravel because they add heat to the soil and moisture evaporates faster

How to Prepare for a Drier Future

  • If your area is at risk for fire, consider adding native fire retardant plants and learn how to protect your property
  • Make sure your irrigation system is efficient, pressure regulated and consistently up to date with the latest water saving technology
  • Study your environment, the animals that exist within the landscape and your long term needs to help you make good ecological choices
  • Study your landscape and the local community. Examine the long-term survivability of your current landscape and consider incorporating climate appropriate plants