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Posted on: December 27, 2016

Tips for Taking a Winter Vacation from Irrigation

Frozen landscape - turn off irrigation systems in winter.

In preparation for cooler temperatures, the Water Utilities Department provides tips for winter lawn care.

As turf becomes dormant – changing from spring green to fall beige – it is a sign to take a break from weekly watering. Trees, shrubs and dormant grass require irrigation every four to six weeks in the winter. The best approach is to turn off the irrigation controller and operate the system manually no more than once per month when temperatures will remain well above freezing. Also, remember keeping the controller off helps prevent accidental activation that could cause icing. From Nov. 1 to April 1, it is acceptable to irrigate during daytime hours, when it is typically warmest. If using hose-end sprinklers, winter is a good time to drain and store hoses, sprinklers and nozzles.

Some like to see bright green grass year-round, but overseeding with winter grass is hard on turf. While winter grass is not prohibited in Irving, irrigating it more than twice per week is prohibited. Residents are encouraged to refrain from weekly watering during the winter to help lawns recover and prepare for spring, as well as realize savings on water costs.

Irving now has year-round, twice-per-week irrigation limits with odd addresses using Sunday and Wednesday to water and even addresses using Saturday and Tuesday. Those who irrigate only once a month or less should choose the appropriate day to avoid a warning or fine. Remember to check cityofirving.org regularly for updates to irrigation guidelines. It is always a good idea to conduct a checkup on an irrigation system before use, including the rain/freeze sensor, to ensure proper operation. For more information, visit cityofirving.org/water-utilities or call (972) 721-2281.

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