Madison urges people to conserve water outdoors

Updated: Jun. 11, 2021 at 11:22 AM CDT
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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) - The drought gripping Wisconsin right now combined with the soaring temperatures has the Madison Water Utility urging residents to use water sparingly outdoors.

On Friday, the water department explained weather conditions combined with a number of out of service wells is straining its water supply right now and issued conservation tips officials hope Madison residents will follow.

  • Established lawns need only one inch of water per week. Applying the water all at once, rather than frequent light waterings, promotes deeper roots and a healthier, more resilient lawn.
  • Avoid watering during the midday heat. This will reduce losses due to evaporation.
  • Raise your lawnmower height to promote deeper rooting. Taller grass also shades the soil surface thereby reducing evaporation.
  • Use a sprinkling can or hand-held hose to specifically target smaller areas where a sprinkler is wasteful.
  • Consider a timed sprinkler, which automatically shuts off after a desired rate of application.
  • Use a rain barrel. Capturing water from downspouts conserves the municipal supply while providing the best water for lawn and garden.

Additional tips for lawn watering are available here.

The utility noted that tips are voluntary.

On Thursday, the agency paused the routine flushing of fire hydrants as well to help conserve water.

When the current heat spell and dry conditions end, or after the wells that were shut down for maintenance start pumping again, utility managers plan to reassess the water supply.

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