Watering Recommendations

Civic Plus ImageIt’s time to give your irrigation system a rest. Irrigating is not necessary to maintain a healthy landscape during the rainy season; even when it’s not raining, landscapes need significantly less water due to shorter days and cooler temperatures. Irrigating during the winter will increase your monthly sewer usage charges next year. This is because sewer caps are calculated during the winter months, and it is assumed that only indoor water is being used during that time. Note, State law prohibits irrigating within 48 hours of measurable rainfall.

Welcome to WaterSmart Yard where you’ll find free weekly watering recommendations for your garden. You can also listen to these recommendations as a recording by calling 707-543-3466.

Irrigation Type Minutes
​per Week
# Watering
# Start
Grass (Pop-Up Spray) - - - A
Grass (Rotor / Impact) - - - A
Low Water Plants (Drip) - - - B
Moderate Water Plants (Drip) - - - B

*These watering recommendations replace soil moisture lost last week and do not look at predicted weather. The “Minutes per Week” recommendations assume an average irrigation flow rate (spray and drip). Your garden may need more or less water depending on your site conditions.
*Click on the How to Program Your Irrigation Controller 1 video below for detailed instruction on how to program your irrigation controller.

Weather Data Source
Santa Rosa Water has two weather stations with the State of California’s CIMIS program:

  • Station #83 on Llano Road (West side of town)
  • Station #158 at the Bennett Valley Golf Course (East side of town)

 Weather data from these two stations are averaged and then used to create the WaterSmart Yard weekly irrigation scheduling recommendations.

Watering Trees

Trees are one of the most valuable elements in your landscape. Urban trees combat climate change, provide shade, clean the air, enhance public health, and contribute to vibrant, sustainable communities. 

Water trees gradually and deeply to ensure that your trees thrive. Apply water slowly and evenly to the tree’s root zone, saturating the soil to a depth of 12-18+ inches. Trees should be watered in multiple locations within the drip line (canopy) of the tree. For more detailed recommendations about tree watering, view Canopy’s recommendations for mature, and young trees. 

Use special care with Oak Trees: Valley Oak, Coast Live Oak, and Blue Oak do not tolerate irrigation in the dry months. Ideally, no supplemental irrigation should be applied to these trees except during exceedingly hot and dry, drought conditions. 

For more information on the benefits of trees and how to care for them, visit Canopy.