By Councilwoman Tawnee McCay
Spring is right around the corner and as residents in one of the 3 driest states in the country, it’s critical that we find ways to be more water wise. Last summer, in preparation for installing new landscaping, I attended the Localscape University class at the Water Conservation Garden (LocalScapes.com) to learn more about water wise landscaping. It was enjoyable learning about the five-step approach to create beautiful landscapes that use local plants and conserves water. They have sample landscape plans and a plant viewing garden to get ideas. We installed a smart water controller that reduces watering when it rains, put stone, trees and bushes in our park-strip instead of lawn and planned deep flowerbeds utilizing drip-lines. We’ve received a lot of compliments about our landscaping and most are surprised to hear it is water wise. Did you know if you “Flip Your Strip” from grass to waterwise plants, mulch or stone you can save an estimated 5,000-8,000 gallons of water a year and get a rebate for doing it? All these upgrades also save money on your water bill.
More than 60% of Utah’s culinary drinking water is being used on outdoor landscapes and water shortages are expected. With the large population growth in our area, water is one of the most important issues facing Utah’s future. In Riverton we are fortunate to have secondary water which helps save money and culinary water, but comes from the same supply sources and still needs to be used thoughtfully.
We are excited to announce that we will be holding two classes in Riverton to teach the principles of Localscapes and help you create a landscape design to help conserve water and money. They will be held Wednesday evenings in March at the Sandra N. Lloyd Community Center from 7-9 p.m. The first class will be March 4 and March 18 and the second class will be March 11 and March 25. The Water Conservation Garden is providing the instructors for the class. The class is free, but space is limited. You can sign up on Riverton City’s website on the Keep Riverton Beautiful page.
It is critical that we all do our part to conserve water. Visit UtahWaterSavers.com to learn about rebates for toilet replacement ($100), smart controllers (1/2 cost, up to $150), localscapes, flip your strip ($1-1.25 per square of replaced lawn) and free landscape consultations. Happy planting.