Cleaning the fish tank? Use the water for non-edible plants instead of throwing away the water. The fishy water is actually a fertilizer rich with beneficial bacteria, potassium, phosphorus and nitrogen.
When refreshing a pet’s water dish, give the stale water to plants or trees instead of washing down the drain. Leftover drinking water, and ice cubes can be given to plants too.
August is National Water Quality Month when we focus on protecting fresh water sources. Protect water quality from pollution of the top six surface water pollutants:
• Vehicles: Fix leaks right away to prevent fluids from seeping into the ground.
• Petwaste: Pick up and properly dispose in the trash or toilet. Animal waste contains nitrogen which can remove oxygen from the water as it degrades, harming aquatic life.
• Yardwaste: Sweep clippings out back on the lawn. Yardwaste can clog storm sewer systems.
• Fertilizer: Use only when necessary and according to the directions. Heavy rainfall or watering can cause these chemicals to leak into groundwater sources. Try using organic fertilizers like compost or mulch instead of commerical fertilizer.
• Sediment: Avoid paving your properties which creates more runoff. Plant native trees and plants to hold soil in place and infiltrate water. Reuse clippings as mulch or compost to protect exposed soil.
• Litter: Reduce, reuse, and recycle to lessen waste. Get trash in the trash can and recycle plastics.
No air conditioning? Stay cool with these water tips:
1. Drink cold water – ideally ice water. Keep ice water in a reusable insulated water bottle to sip throughout the day to cool off and stay hydrated.
2. Dip feet in cool water, just enough to cover the top of the feet. While the feet soak, dab a cold washcloth or ice pack on pulse points — temples, neck, elbow crooks, wrists, behind the knees, and ankles.
3. Take a tepid or cool shower or bath.
4. Chill sheets and take a freezer pack to bed. Wrap the pack in a washcloth and put it in a water-tight Ziploc bag to avoid leaks and condensation.
5. Spritz curtains with water or hang a damp sheet in front of an open window or fan. The breeze evaporates water as the it passes over the damp curtains or sheet. Setting a tray or bowl of ice in front of a fan is another option.
Scottsbluff water use triples in the summer and about 2/3 goes to landscape watering. Save money, energy, and water with wiser outdoor water use.
1. Avoid overwatering – aim for .75 to 1.5 inches a week depending on the week’s temperatures. Or do the footprint test – if the grass springs up, moisture levels are good. If the grass footprint stays flat, time to water.
2. Water in short sessions to promote absorption instead of flood irrigating.
3. Mow at least 3 inches high to retain moisture and lower water demand.
4. In the long-term, invest in native and drought tolerant landscaping that are hardier and require less water and chemical for their upkeep.
5. Install drip and/or smart water systems to water only where necessary and when needed.
Persistent, Bioaccumulative, and Toxic chemicals (PBTs) like copper, lead, perchlorate, and lithium remain on firework debris after detonation. PBTs remain in the environment for very long periods of time, are highly resistant to degradation, easily enter and quickly accumulate in the food chain and can be toxic to both humans and animals.
– Please pick up firework debris. Let spent fireworks sit only until they’re no longer hot or burning then move them to a bucket with water.
– Water used to soak spent fireworks should be flushed in a toilet so the water can be treated at the wastewater treatment plant. Please do not pour the water down the gutter or on lawns to avoid contaminating ground and water with PBTs.
– Sweep small firework particles and put them in a plastic bag for disposal in the trash. The particles are prone to travel in the wind or in water runoff spreading PBTs to soils and waterways.
Water less and boost plant health with healthy soil. Pores in healthy soil increase the water holding power and nutrient access for root systems too, which not only help plant growth but also prevent erosion, soil pollution, and further increase water retention.
Save water and Increase soil water retention with these tips:
– Avoid compaction with heavy equipment to preserve porous spaces in the soil.
– Add compost to your soil to improve its ability filter water more effectively during heavy rain and retain more moisture for plants during drought.
– Use drip irrigation to water plants’ directly above the roots and minimize evaporation.
– Place plants close enough to shade areas of bare soil between them to save water and resulting in fewer weeds. To retain moisture in the soil between plants that need wide spacing, try a weed barrier like mulch, or under sow a ground cover that won’t grow tall and compete.