Xeriscape: Planting For Water Conservation

Xeriscape is not a character from a science fiction movie, but it is a useful tool in beautifying your lawn with water conservation in mind. In Connecticut, we are prone to dry summers (well, maybe not lately!) so in order to use water efficiently, it is wise to partake in xeriscaping. Xeriscape, pronounced ZEER-is-cape, is planting native plants that are drought resistant and thus, require less watering and in many cases, low maintenance. This means less money and effort spent on fertilizing, landscaping, and water!

Below are several plant recommendations for your xeriscape garden:


–        Joe Pye Weed

–        Butterfly Weed

–        Moss Phlox

Ornamental Grass – Butterfly Weed:

–        Switchgrass

Ground Cover:

–        Creeping Juniper

–        Bearberry


–        Inkberry Switchgrass

–        Blueberry, lowbush


–        Sage

–        Thyme

–        Lavender

History of the Lawn Sprinkler Systems

The “lawn” as we know it, enjoyed by families for recreational purposes, was first relished by the wealthy of Europe in the 18th century. As lawns became more popular, it became necessary to provide water to areas where rain could not maintain them.

Who invented the lawn sprinkler?

The first lawn sprinkler US patent was registered to J. Lessler of Buffalo, New York (#121949) in 1871, which was activated with the help of gardening hose. In the twentieth century, the rotating sprinkler heads were made out of aluminum tubing, plastic, rubber and watered lawns across America. These sprinklers had adjustable oscillating heads with a metal arm that sprayed out water in an adjustable fan shape to an area up to 600 square feet (55.7 sq. meters).

As the awareness of water conservation grows, water efficient technology is being implemented and more customers are concerned with creating water efficient layouts for their lawn sprinklers. Summer Rain Sprinklers understands that water conservation on a global scale starts in your backyard. We use water efficient systems and our design team is well educated in how to properly design your lawn sprinkler layout so that you save water and save money. After all, your sidewalk doesn’t need watering!

5 Tips On Water Efficiency At Home

One of the best ways to be more efficient in your home is to educate your family on how they can save more water and why it is important. Below are 5 tips that can help you get on the road to water efficiency!

#1 Use as little water as possible in cooking. It also helps retain more nutrients!

#2 We all accidentally drop ice cubes – don’t throw them in the sink! Instead, put them in a house plant instead!

#3 Set your washer to the appropriate amount of laundry you are doing.

#4 While brushing your teeth, turn off the water.

#5 Reward kids for being water-efficient!


Following these tips consistently can help you family realize the importance of being water efficient everywhere they go and overtime, it can do wonders for your wallet!

New Water Well in Greenwich? It Must Pass Through These Tests

With the latest contamination found in well water in Easton, CT, more people are asking themselves, “Is my tap water safe to consume?”

First, if you are getting your water from the city, it is safe to assume that your tap water is safe as it goes through various treatments before it gets to you. Individuals who receive their water through a well can have their water tested to help put their minds at ease.

When a new water well is drilled in Greenwich, it must pass numerous test before being deemed safe to consume. If you have an existing well, many of the same tests and solutions will be offered to you as listed in the PDF below, found on greenwichct.org


Water Efficiency On Your Lawn – It’s All About Design

Since 1981, Summer Rain Sprinklers has spent so much time with lawns, it’s only natural that we would go “Green”.

While water efficiency is a global issue, fixing it starts in your home. The biggest water usage in one’s home during the warmer months is typically the water used by the lawn irrigation system. However, it doesn’t have to be that way. With the proper new design or retrofit of your existing lawn irrigation system, we can help your system be 60-70% more water efficient!

In our experience, we have found that while water efficient equipment can be of great help, without proper design and installation, it can be as inefficient as any other equipment. This is why we ensure that our team is well-trained in properly structuring or restructuring your lawn irrigation system as well as knowledgeable about the latest, eco-friendly technological advances in the industry.

One of the benefits of proper design is ensuring that you are not watering the sidewalk as pictured below. Not only is it a nuisance to people passing by, but it is an immense waste of water. This is something that can be easily prevented with proper design or retrofit:


From our design of the layout for your lawn irrigation system to our thorough maintenance check-ups, we make sure to keep your lawn eco-friendly, which helps keep your water bill low.

Call us at 203-629-8050.

How Much Water Is Needed to Feed the World

Did you know that agriculture consumes 70% of fresh water? With staggering facts as such, we have to wonder: how much water are we eating?

The infographic below has information that may surprise you, but we hope it also makes you think about solutions to this worldwide problem. Some of the items on your plate which require a lot of water to grow, include:

–        Wheat

–        Corn

–        Sunflower

–        Soybean

–        Grapes

–        Barley

While crops vary by region of the world, there are solutions we can employ, starting with awareness. Sensing equipment, enhanced crop protection and other improvements in irrigation are actively helping improve our water usage and crop yield.

But you can also help at home, by ensuring that your lawn irrigation system is properly designed, installed and maintained. To find out more, give us a call: 203-629-8050.

How much water is needed to feed the world?

How Much Will Updating My Landscape Lights to LED Actually Save Me?

When considering updating your landscape lighting, you may be worried about cost. However, one of the benefits of updating old systems is making your setup more energy efficient. Installing LED lights inside and outside of your home may offset the cost of updating your landscape lighting!

This image is a good representation of how much money you can save over a period of years by updating your lights to LED.

inhabitat_LIGHTSSource: inhabitat.com

Lawn Care Tips For a Healthy Lawn (and Wallet)


Source: Mansfield Service

Water at night

Setting your timer to turn on sprinklers at night time is one of the best ways to ensure that you use water efficiently. Less light and cooler temperatures help prevent water from evaporating and therefore more is absorbed by your lawn!

Observe the 3” rule

What is a healthy length for your grass to be at? You guessed it, 3 inches!

At 3”, grass has more surface area for photosynthesis to occur, which results in a stronger root system. This helps you save on weed killer as strong rood systems prohibit weed growth.


This fancy word simply means “planting things native to your area.” One of the numerous benefits of xeriscaping is that they are low maintenance, saving you from spending money on specialized care.

Sprinkler Maintenance Checklist

Spring is here! And so is the time for sprinkler maintenance. The following comprehensive sprinkler maintenance checklist can be helpful in maintaining your sprinkler system. However, keep in mind that professional sprinkler maintenance services will help you optimize your water efficiency and ensure that any issues with your existing system are resolved, saving you money and time.




Sprinkler Selection & Layout
Are lawn areas and landscape plants on separate zones? If not, relocate sprinklers.
Are rotors and spray heads on separate zones? If not, relocate sprinklers. Piping or other changes may be necessary.
Are lawn and plant areas that require watering receiving it? If not, adjust spray pattern or replace with nozzle that has correct spray pattern.
Are pavement areas or plants that do not require water receiving it? If so, replace or adjust nozzles to receive the appropriate arc pattern or relocate sprinklers.
Are spray patterns free from obstructions? If not, trim plants or relocate sprinklers.
Are sprinklers covering at least 80 percent of the distance to adjacent sprinklers? If not, relocate sprinklers to provide head-to-head coverage.
Are sprinklers of similar make and model used in each zone? If not, match manufacturer and model within each zone.
Do all rotors or spray heads within a zone have the same flow rate? If not, replace sprinklers or nozzles as needed to match.
Do sprinklers rise up enough to provide adequate coverage? If not, replace short heads with taller ones of the same model or add fittings to raise height.
Time Clock Settings
Are rotor zones set to run 45-60 minutes? If not, adjust as needed.
Are spray zones set to run 15-20 minutes? If not, adjust as needed.
Is the clock set to operate during allowable day(s) and times? Know and follow local watering restrictions. Adjust as needed.
Rain Sensor Device
Is the sensor blocked by plants or other objects? If so, move sensor or prune plants.
Is the sensor wired into the clock properly? If not, follow manufacture’s wiring instructions.
Is the sensor checked annually for proper operation? Check annually.
Maintenance Issues
Are sprinklers or pipes damaged? If so, repair or replace with similar model.
Are sprinklers clogged? If so, clean nozzles, screens and filters by soaking and scrubbing with a toothbrush. If many are clogged, zone flushing may be necessary. Install filters or screens to minimize clogging.
Any leaks? If so, check rubber seals for tears and debris. Clean or replace with similar model.
Are sprinklers leaning? If so, place upright. Stake to protect if this occurs often, or consider moving the sprinkler. On slopes, heads should be aligned perpendicular to the slope.
Is water leaking from the lowest head when the zone is off? If so, install a check valve or replace sprinkler with one containing a built-in check valve.
Landscape Appearance
Do lawn and plants appear healthy? Check for other causes of problems first (damage, fertilizer deficiency, etc.). If not, check plant’s water needs against amount of water applied.
Are there excessively dry or wet spots? If so, check sprinkler spacing and application rates.
Are there visible holes in the ground? If so, check for leaks, fix, then fill holes.
Are there any areas that are visibly eroded? If so, check for leaks, make repairs, fill area, and cover with mulch, sod or groundcover plants.


* Adapted from a publication created by Christine Claus, St. Petersburg Water Resources Department, and Dr. Joan Bradshaw, University of Florida IFAS, with funding provided by the Pinellas-Anclote River basin Board of the Southwest Florida Water Management District.