It’s World Water Month!
Here are some quick tips to help you conserve this natural resource, and protect its quality, too.
1- Keep showers short, or skip them all together!
We don’t need to shower everyday. Heck since becoming a mom, I only shower about twice a week, and I have yet to lose any friends over it.
But if you are into bathing and smelling like an English rose, try super short 5 minute showers.
2- Install low-flow toilets and shower heads.
The shower-heads are affordable and easy to instal yourself.
As a renter, you can always take your shower-head with you when you move, as well!
If you aren’t keen on replacing your toilet, you can get a cistern displacement device put into your toilet to reduce the volume of water being used in each flush.
Or you can DIY – put an inch or two of sand or pebbles inside each of two plastic bottles to weigh them down. Fill the bottles with water, screw the lids on, and put them in your toilet tank, safely away from the operating mechanisms. This may save ten or more gallons of water per day.
Be sure at least 3 gallons of water remain in the tank so it will flush properly.
3- Fix leaky plumbing.
Tightening up a leaky sink is usually simple and quick.
4- Use the bin to toss your trash, not the toilet.
The toilet is not a wastebasket, flushing a piece of trash or cigarette butt is ridiculously wasteful!
And try skipping flushes here and there. A bit of pee sitting in the bowl is not the end of world.
5- Don’t waste water outdoors.
Limit outdoor watering and washing to the bare necessities.
Let the rain rinse your car clean.
Use a watering can for the plants instead of a hose.
6- Use a rain barrel.
Catch and use rainwater for the yard, garden, and to wash the car.
7- Avoid rinsing trash and soaps into the sewer.
These lead into rivers, bays, and other waterways.
8- Turn off the tap while brushing your teeth.
This doesn’t sound like much, but it saves about 5 litres per minute!
9- Don’t run the tap to get water colder.
If you want cold water for drinking, pop a jug of tap water into the fridge. Or use ice. It’s simple to make and I’ll even share the secret recipe with you!
10 – Be water efficient with your landscaping.
Plant hardy, drought tolerant plants in your yard, this will keep you from having to water as often.
Mulching your plants will also reduce on the need to water.
Some pretty suggestions for drought tolerant plants include:
California Lilac, Deer Grass, Salvia, Dusty Miller (pictured), Tickweed (pictured), Cactus, Cape Blanco, Sunset Strain (pictured), and lavender.
11- The same goes for indoor plants.
Try succulents (pictured), ZZs, palms, snake plants (pictured), cacti, air plants (pictured), chinese evergreens, cast-irons, pathos, begonias.
These plants use little water and are hard to kill (for those of us with a black thumb… or two).
12 – Run your dishwasher and washing machines with full loads only.
13- Use a broom, not a hose.
To clean your porch, driveway, lanai, sidewalks, and other outdoor areas.
14 – Don’t water the lawn on windy days, or at high noon.
This will keep the water where it needs to be for longer.
15 – Be water smart when cooking.
Make sure to choose the correct size pot, something larger than needed will be a waste of water. Cooking with less water will also increase the amount of nutrients the food retains.
16- Use the garbage disposal less, and compost more!
17 – Use gray-water.
Reserve the water used to rinse fruit and veggies and use it to water your plants.
18 – Soak your pots and pans.
This will make washing a quick breeze, instead of letting the water run while you scrub.
19- Wash clothes in cold water.
Cold uses less water. And it will help keep your darks darker for longer.
20 – Install a shut off valve or self closing hose.
This will ensure that the hose only runs while in use.
21 – Move planters into the shade.
This will help plants avoid the hot afternoon sun, and reduce the amount of water they need.
It’s never too late to challenge yourself to be mindful of water use habits.
Let’s work together to seek changes that will make our oceans and waterways healthier for all!
If you have more tips, please add them in the comments!