Summer Watering Guidelines

Water is a valuable resource that we often take for granted. Here in Frederick we are living at the edge of what was once called the Great American Desert. The high quality of life that we are accustomed to here would not be possible without a constant source of clean water. Slightly more than half of all the water that we use is not for drinking, or cooking, or bathing, but instead it is used outside of our houses for our yards. This may not seem strange at first, but consider that throughout the year, your yard drinks more water than your entire family uses for everything inside of the house. This is why we must be conscious of our outdoor water usage, and we must take measures to conserve this precious resource. The Town has long-range plans to preserve and conserve our water resources now and in the future. As an example, the Town waters many parks and open space areas with water that comes from Boulder Creek, rather than with treated drinking water; but unless all residents of Frederick work together to conserve water, the Town’s efforts will not be effective.

In the past, Frederick has instituted mandatory outdoor watering restrictions. This year, the Board of Trustees, at staff’s recommendation, decided that instead of implementing mandatory restrictions, the Town is asking for your help in conserving water voluntarily.

There are many simple things that you can do to conserve water. Here is a list of things that you can do:

  • Check your sprinklers, hoses, and even indoor appliances such as faucets and toilets for drips or leaks
  • Install an automatic sprinkler irrigation system for your yard that is on a timer (see table below for recommended watering amounts)
  • Don’t water your yard during the hottest part of the day (from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.)
  • Don’t water during periods of high wind, and make sure to turn off automatic sprinklers if it is raining
  • Make sure that your sprinklers don’t spray water onto sidewalks and non-vegetated areas
  • Consider changing your landscaping to types that require less water, such as xeriscaping
  • Don’t spray water from the hose to clean your driveway or sidewalks- use a broom instead
  • Use a bucket and a sponge to wash your car instead of spraying it with a hose

When watering your yard with manual sprinklers, or setting an automatic sprinkler system, the following guidelines will lead to the most efficient water use:

Watering MonthsWatering Times (minutes per zone) Determine how long to water each zone on your watering dayWatering Amounts*
Fixed Spray
Rotor HeadsManual
January - April: Water as needed, especially trees and shrubs.
October: Water as needed, especially trees and shrubs.

*How much water your grass needs each week.

In addition to the above recommendations you may be interested in the town’s residential water rate schedule, which utilizes a graduated per-unit cost system to further encourage conservation.

For more information about summertime watering and the water needs of landscaping, please visit the following web sites:

Colorado State University - Xeriscaping
Colorado State Turfgrass Program
Colorado WaterWise
Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District