Fall is the Ideal Time to Plant Wisely and Water More Efficiently
By AMWUA Staff
The daytime temperatures are finally on the decline and the evenings are cooler, which means now is an ideal time to start planning and get planting to transform your yard into the outdoor retreat you have always envisioned. The possibilities for creating a beautiful, easy to care for landscape that thrives in our environment while using less water are endless, and the time to get started is now.
We always talk about being wise with our outdoor water use, regardless of the time of year, but it's also essential to know how to Plant It Wisely.
Why plant in the fall?
Whether you are looking to update your landscape with more water-efficient plants or need to replace those that suffered at the hands of the record-breaking summer, the fall planting season is ideal. Beginning in late September and until early December is a great time to transform your yard for many reasons:
- Soil temperatures are still warm, which encourages root growth and development
- Plants have time to get properly established in their new surroundings before they must deal with a bout of desert heat in the summer
- Plants require less water with cooler temperatures and without the relentless summer sun
Proper planning is a must
A great yard begins with a great plan. When designing your landscape and developing your unique plan, it's important to consider your own preferences and purposes, such as:
- The look you want to achieve
- How you will use your yard
- The amount of time you want to spend taking care of your yard
- Your budget
Developing your unique plan is vital because it will incorporate what you like into all phases of planning and building your yard.
Don't forget about watering
Water is a precious resource, especially for us here in the desert. Being water-wise is a year-round responsibility, so now that temperatures are cooling, it's an ideal time to take stock of how water-efficient your yard is.
- Proper plant selection and appropriate irrigation can significantly reduce water consumption and ensure your plants thrive.
- Inspect your irrigation system: The weather is perfect for an irrigation check-up. It's as simple as turning on your irrigation system and walking around your yard to find and fix leaks. AMWUA's Smart Home Water Guide can help.
- Adjust your watering schedule: Seasonal adjustment of irrigation schedules is one of the easiest and most effective ways to avoid wasting water. You should adjust your irrigation at least four times a year. Learn more about properly watering your new plants and how to adjust your watering schedule for fall and heading into winter.
Help is here when you need it
All of the AMWUA communities have professional conservation staff dedicated to assisting their residents and businesses in using water efficiently. Take a moment to virtually visit your local water conservation office to explore the resources available to you.
- Take a class: The cities have been working diligently to ensure their vast array of courses and workshops continue to be available by creating online workshops and virtual classes for residents. Check out various topics and skills you can learn to assist you with planning your landscape, planting and caring for your plants, and outdoor water use.
- Get a rebate: In addition to classes, each municipality provides its unique blend of water conservation programs. Some programs include rebates to help residents and businesses save water and money - both indoors and out. You can download a list of local rebates here, or visit the rebates section for the most up to date information, including how to apply for the available rebate programs within your city.
- Hire the right pro: If you are not the DIY type, it is essential to hire the right person to help you design, install, and maintain your landscape and ensure your irrigation system is running as efficiently as possible. As in any profession, not all landscape service providers are equal. The landscape professional you select to assist you should be a trusted partner who will provide expert advice, guidance, and services to help bring your outdoor living space to life.
Being wise with our outdoor water use is essential, regardless of the time of year. A well-planned, properly-planted, water-efficient landscape will save you time, water, and money and also ensure your yard becomes the outdoor retreat you have always envisioned. So head outdoors, enjoy the weather, and plant wisely.
For over 50 years, the Arizona Municipal Water Users Association has helped protect our member cities' ability to provide assured, safe, and sustainable water supplies to their communities. For more information, visit www.amwua.org.
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