Watering Smart is Part of an Award-Winning Landscape

Over the past 20 years, the Tampa Bay Community Water Wise Awards program has recognized homeowners and businesses who are committed to conserving water and protecting the environment by using the most water-efficient landscaping practices.

In the third post of this series, we will discuss the importance of the proper irrigation techniques for a Water Wise landscape. As seen in the following videos, efficient irrigation can save water and money.

Using the right irrigation techniques and technologies goes a long way toward saving water at home. One key is selecting the right sprinkler head for the area, which can help reduce water waste like watering the driveway or street.


Here are a few tips on efficient irrigation:

  • Rotors apply water over a large area, so they are good for lawns, while spray heads are better for small areas of grass and some landscape beds.
  • Micro-irrigation, also known as drip or low-volume irrigation, is ideal for shrubs, flowers and potted plants. Because water goes directly to the root of the plant, there is less water loss from evaporation, wind and runoff and fewer pests.
  • Adjust your sprinkler timer for various zones to apply ½ to ¾ inch water per application. Generally, rotor zones should be set to 45 minutes to an hour and spray heads to 15 to 25 minutes per application. These may be adjusted to ensure each area receives the amount of water it needs.
  • Remember to turn your irrigation system off during the rainy season.

One of the most effective ways to use less water outside is to install Florida-friendly landscaping that doesn’t require much additional irrigation. Florida-friendly landscapes incorporate efficient irrigation to reduce stormwater and nutrient runoff while conserving water. With micro-irrigation, where water is delivered to the roots of the plants, where it is needed most, it is an important component of a Florida-friendly landscape. For information on efficient micro-irrigation systems, see A Guide to Micro-Irrigation for West Central Florida Landscapes.

Watch the five-part video series that highlights previous winners of the Tampa Bay Community Water Wise Award, and provides tips on how you can make your landscaping more water-efficient and Florida-friendly.

For more information on conserving water outside visit https://www.tampabaywater.org/save-water-outside-my-home and to enter the contest, visit awards.tampabaywaterwise.org. Who knows, maybe this year you will be a winner!