Under Stage 1 rules, outdoor watering with a sprinkler or irrigation system is allowed only before 11 a.m. and after 7 p.m., one day per week. Unseasonably dry weather has lingered on for months now — triggering Stage 1 watering rules.

SAWS has significantly diversified San Antonio’s water supplies. As a result, the Edwards Aquifer now represents only about half of our available drinking water because it is just one of nine water sources. According to the city’s Aquifer Management Plan ordinance, coming out of drought stages can be considered 15 days after the aquifer is above the trigger level. More information on Stage 1 rules can be found at saws.org/stage1.

Under Stage 1 rules, outdoor watering with a sprinkler or irrigation system is allowed only before 11 a.m. and after 7 p.m., one day per week, as determined by the last number of your street address.

Watering days begin and end at midnight; overnight watering is not allowed. Water waste, such as water running down the street, is prohibited year-round. However, watering with a handheld hose is allowed any day, any time.

There’s no need to worry about your landscape. Native and adapted plants thrive with biweekly or monthly watering. Just take a look at roadside grasses and wildflowers. They’re green most of the year with absolutely no supplemental water.

Now that we’re in Stage 1, it’s a good idea to check your irrigation system controller to make sure it’s programmed correctly. Also, be sure to review these common programming mistakes to avoid water waste and high-water bills. In fact, your irrigation controller has an easy button to help you do just that.

By Mark Peterson,

Written by GardenStyleSanAntonio