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Old 07-16-2002, 06:08 PM
TarainNC's Avatar
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saving water

We are in the midst of a drought here in NC. I have quite a few flower beds and a small vegetable garden and have been watering them regularly as they are not yet established. Well, yesterday my city instituted water restrictions and today I received my water bill. It has tripled over last month!! My water and sewer was more than my electric bill!

I saved the water from my shower this morning in the tub and used it to water some flower pots in the yard, but it was such a pain to lug water by the bucket through the house and into the yard. I hand wash dishes in a basin inside the sink anyway, and so I used tonight's dirty water to water plants, too.

I already wash clothes only when there is a full load (not a problem with two kids), brush teeth without the tap running and I don't use the dishwasher (broken).

Other than letting my plants die from the drought, I need suggestions to conserve water and salvage my investment in my landscaping.
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Old 07-17-2002, 12:30 PM
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some plant-watering tips

Mulch helps to keep water in the ground - keeps it from evaporating. So if you haven't mulched, do so.

Composting "edible" trash is good too. Not only does compost have nutrients, but it has moisture in it, too.

Use the water you boiled food in - once it has cooled - to water plants.

Water early in the morning, or around dusk. Watering when it is sunny is bad because (a)the water droplets can magnify the sun and actually scorch the leaves and (b)this is when the water is mostly likely to evaporate.

If you can, invest in trickle hose. This is the kind of hose that has tiny holes all along it. You bury it along a flower bed, and it waters into the ground instead of on top. Normally, this would use tap water but I'm sure someone can figure out how to use that with water from a barrel, etc.

If really desperate, you could also trap the water drained from your washing machine - re route the hose - to use in the garden.

If you're rerouting all your water this way, keep your eye on that sewer portion of the bill. Most cities use the amount you take out to bill you for the amount you "put back" via sewer. Not real fair if you aren't putting it back...
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Old 07-21-2002, 07:02 AM
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I think that NC is a little worse than we are here in VA, but they are treatening manditory water restrictions soon here. Right now it is just voluntary. I have given up on my plants this year except a very small flower garden. I have been lugging water outside from my dishes and cooking. I have been thinking about it as my extra exercise too! I have started taking "sailor showers" too.
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