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Water infrequently but deeply to moisten the whole root zone

  • For lawns, a loss of shine or the lingering presence of footprints indicate that it's time to water.
  • If your soil is dry or compacted, stop watering for a while and then restart; this prevents runoff.
  • Vegetables and other annuals should be watered at the first sign of droop, or about one inch a week.
  • Trees and shrubs usually don't need to be watered once they are fully established (2 to 4 years).

Make every drop count

  • Water in the early morning; plant leaves dry out and this prevents fungal disease.
  • Use mulch around plants to hold in moisture.
  • Choose native plants.
  • Use timers, soaker hoses or drip irrigation to manage water use.
  • Don't water the sidewalk.

Let the rain soak in

  • Direct downspouts out onto lawns and garden beds.
  • Use open pavers, gravel or other types of pavement that let rain in.
  • Create swales to direct rooftop rain toward your plants.

If you have an irrigation system

  • Inspect the system once a month - look for leaks or heads that are plugged or misdirected.
  • Test and adjust the system annually and make any necessary repairs.
  • Install a rain shutoff device.
  • Adjust the watering schedule throughout the growing season - plants need a lot less water in May and September than they do in July and August.

Learn more

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For lawns, a loss of shine or the lingering presence of footprints indicate that it's time to water.
Contact Us

 Call: 206-477-4466

TTY Relay: 711

Fax: 206-296-0197

King County Solid Waste Division mission: Waste Prevention, Resource Recovery, Waste Disposal