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Victoria enters drought plan

Dec. 3, 2012 at 6:03 a.m.
Updated Dec. 4, 2012 at 6:04 a.m.


Water conservation 101:

• Water the lawn only when necessary. If grass turns a dull gray-green or if footprints remain visible, it is time to water.

• Water early in the morning and late in the evening.

• Use a sprinkler that produces large drops rather than a fine mist to avoid evaporation.

• Turn soaker hoses so that the holes are on the bottom.

• Water slowly for better absorption and never water on windy days.

• Avoid watering the street, sidewalks or driveways.

• Do not overwater or water too frequently. Too much water can overload the soil so that air cannot get to the roots and can encourage plant diseases. Use a timer. An inch of water once a week will keep most Texas grasses healthy.

• Raise the cutting height on your lawnmower. Longer blades of grass provides shade for the root system and makes the turf more drought-resistant.

The first stage of Victoria's Drought Contingency Plan will go into effect Tuesday, the city announced Monday.

Because the Guadalupe River flow is at a below normal level for this time of year, Victoria residents are urged to voluntarily reduce water use for nonessential purposes.

Under the 1998 surface water permit, Victoria must limit its pumping to no more than 10 percent of the river flow when the level of the river is below normal.

"Unfortunately, the fall rains we anticipated have failed to appear," Public Works Director Lynn Short said in a news release. "Victoria residents should conserve water every day but be extra conscious of their water usage throughout these drier months of the year."

Victoria will remain in Stage One of the Drought Contingency Plan until the flow in the Guadalupe River rises to a normal level for 14 consecutive days, according to the news release. However, if the river level falls to its minimum level for this time of the year, the city would enter Stage Two of the plan.

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