The Risks of Drought and Climate Change
While our original irrigation challenges were about floods and crops, the irrigation challenges that you face are likely about green lawns and lush landscaping. Of course, living in California, you have your mind on handling drought and minimizing your personal contribution to climate change as well. How can a green lawn fit in with your environmental consciousness?
Well, the answer is not to just rip up your grass (unless you’re going to replace it with other plants, but they’ll require irrigation too.)The bare ground can’t absorb much water, and it thus contributes to stormwater problems. It also loses moisture quickly as there is nothing to shade it from the sun. Instead, having climate-appropriate plants and managing them with the proper amount of water is the best solution to managing water on your property.
The problems start when people use too much water for their plants. On many lawns, up to half of the water that is applied ends up draining away or evaporating in the heat instead of getting down into the soil where plants can access it. This is a tremendous waste of water, especially in high-heat climates or during droughts.