It’s spring and the first bright green blades of grass are poking through the earth. It’s time to begin thinking about how you’ll take care of those lawns without draining your wallet on the water bill.
Lawn maintenance has become increasingly challenging in Colorado over recent years. Extended drought and growing population has meant water rates are on the rise and we’ve even had watering restrictions in some Colorado counties the last few summers.
Here are a few tips for preparing your Colorado yard this spring.
- Rake the leaves
Those leaves left over from the fall have been replenishing your soil through the winter, but now it’s time to clean them up. They’re looking old and soggy and they’re covering your ground so that when you start watering, you might not get water where you need it.
- Consider some xeriscaping
Do you have a huge grassy front or back lawn? That’s a lot to water. Consider replacing some of that grass with xeriscaping rock and mulch. These are not desolate rock gardens the way they might have been when the concept was born. You can plant some beautiful and colorful plants that need very little water or attention and enjoy a beautifully designed yard.
- Aerate your lawn
Thatch is a spongy bundle of roots and plants that grow on the surface of your ground and prevent water and sunlight from reaching the earth. When you poke holes in it, it breaks the barrier so your grass and plants can get the nutrients and water they need.
- Plant drought-resistant grass
Spring is the time to plant grass seed. The trick is getting the right kind of grass. Traditional grass types require a lot of water and can grow tall in the height of the summer, requiring constant mowing. Fortunately, there are several great grasses that require very little water and will provide a low-maintenance green yard through the summer. Talk with the experts at the Colorado Springs Utilities Conservation Center (2855 Mesa Road) to find out what types of grass work best for what goals.
- Consider turf
If you really want a green lawn, but really don’t want to mow it, turf could be the answer. This isn’t the green carpet your grandma had on her porch. This is impressive turf made to rival that in professional sports stadiums. It can be very expensive, but is nice alternative to thirsty and maintenance-heavy grass that turns brown in the winter.
- What about an edible yard?
Instead of planting grass this spring, consider planting gardens of vegetables and fruits. Installing a drip system, ideally timed to water plants in the early morning, can make maintenance easy. Plus, you can eat the fruits of your labor.
If your water bill is too high and you’re not sure how to fix it, contact the Energy Resource Center. We help hundreds of families in Denver, the Pikes Peak Region and the San Luis Valley permanently reduce their utility bills with free energy efficiency upgrades.