New Water Regulations for San Jose Residents
by Josh Levine on April 28, 2015 in Garden Plans, Garden Startup, Gardening Tips
Water Regulations for San Jose
Residents – Am I Violating any
Now that there are more strict rules in place, many San Jose
residents are worried that they are violating landscape watering
laws that have not been enforced in the past. From the most
recent article released by the Mercury News, we see that you
really only have to worry about these three main topics: Lawns,
Cars and Pools.
How Do These Laws Affect
My Vegetable Garden
Now, if you are already a StartOrganic client, you know that we
have been preaching lawn removal for a long time and most
likely you have removed at least some part of your lawn to grow
veggies and a few natives. These new laws that are in effect
until March, 2016 do not affect those of us with vegetable
gardens with drip irrigation or apply water by hand. Because
we teach you to set your drip irrigation to cooler hours of the
day (between 8PM and 10AM), you should not have to change
your watering schedule at all.
If you still do have a lawn, you may have to cut back on
watering. Some exceptions to the rule are as follows. If you
have drip irrigation or water by hand, you are not currently
violating any laws. It seems they will be looking for sprinkler
systems that are going off more than twice per week or if the
sprinklers are watering during the heat of the day (10AM-8PM).
Properties whose addresses end in odd numbers are allowed to
water only on Mondays and Thursdays. Properties whose
addresses end in even numbers may water only on Tuesdays
Any NEW lawn installation is illegal between the months of May
and October if it has a standard sprinkler system. We
recommend NOT installing lawn if you can help it and instead
growing some edible crops that you can get something out
of or natives that don’t use much water at all. Always use low
flow drip emitters and limit any of your standard sprinkler
systems if you can help it.
Washing your car with potable water at home is now prohibited
in San Jose, period. You can take it to a commercial car wash if
they use recirculating water, but that is really the only exception
at this point.
If you have a pool, you are not supposed to “top off” more than
1 foot of water at a time unless you needed to drain it to fix a
leak. While it is still legal to purchase hot tubs, regulations state
that you are not supposed to fill them.
We all know that water is a resource that we need to preserve in
the coming years, so if you are using it, have a good purpose.
Lawns are great if you are playing with your kids or pets, but
most of us have more lawn than we would ever need. If that’s
the case, then bypass all of these laws and take it out! ..and as
I’ve always said, “when in drought, take that carpet out!”
For more information on these new laws,