Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Running Sprinklers Now Is Not Necessary

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Running Sprinklers Now Is Not Necessary

Article excerpt

Byline: PAULA LAMB

We've had ample rain this summer. I still see some yards with in-ground sprinklers that run on a regular basis. Is that necessary?

I don't think we can talk enough about the need for water conservation. When we have plenty of rainfall, extra watering is absolutely not necessary and falls into the category of "overwatering."

While sprinkler systems with automatic timers are convenient, I encourage home-owners, if possible, to "turn off" the automatic part and operate the system manually. We should all get into the habit of watering only when necessary. If you live in a multi-housing complex such as an apartment or condominium, encourage your landlord or lawn maintenance person to forgo the automatic feature. With regular rainfall, we should let nature take over the watering.

Current exceptions to water restrictions include watering to establish new sod and plants and watering in fertilizers or chemicals within 24 hours of application. There is also an exception that allows testing of irrigation systems.

Hand-watering using a hose with an automatic shut off valve is allowed any time.

I planted two container-grown fig trees a couple of years ago, and they don't seem to be growing. What should I do?

Since you indicated that your fig trees are probably getting enough sun and water and that the soil is suitable, the lack of growth tells me that they may have been improperly planted. This could mean that they were either planted too deep or that the root ball was not sufficiently prepared to allow the roots to grow.

I suggest that you carefully dig your trees up and replant them. Keep in mind that most of our landscape plants prefer a well-drained soil and if you replant during the summer months, provide plenty of water to help them get reestablished.

When digging a hole for your shrub or tree, the hole should only be as deep as the root ball - no deeper. …

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