Yes, today’s weather report is expected to bring scattered thunderstorms, and we have had quite a bit of rain in the past week or so, but we are still under a Level IV Drought Response. And it will probably only get worse considering that from May through September Atlanta hardly experiences any rainy days – it’s nothing but smoldering, humid heat. Due to the severe lack of rain we experience most every summer, Atlanta, and Georgia in general, is in a perpetual drought and always has been. I think if it rained steady for an entire year, we would probably still be in a drought!
So, what does this mean to you as a homeowner in metro Atlanta – watering restrictions. The local government restricts when and how you use your water. If you violate any of these regulations, you are subject to a hefty fine. In an attempt to make things easier for you, we’ve listed the Atlanta watering rules for you here (these are relevant for Bartow, Cherokee, Cobb, Dekalb, Douglas, Forsyth, Fulton, Gwinnett, Henry and Paulding, as well as many others):
- Even and unnumbered addresses may water on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays; odd numbered addresses may water on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays.
- You may use soaker hoses or drip irrigation systems to water your trees, shrubs and flowers (cannot water your grass this way) for 1 hour between midnight and 10:00 a.m. on your scheduled day (even/odd schedule).
- You may use a garden house for up to 25 minutes between midnight and 10:00 a.m. on your scheduled day. The garden hose must be the kind with a deadman’s switch. If you use the garden house, you can water your entire landscape, including the grass.
- New landscapes that have been installed by the homeowner can be watered for an extended period of time up to three days/week (use the even/odd schedule) from midnight to 10 a.m. for a period of 10 weeks. You do need to register your new landscape in order to use the extended hours.
- Food gardens can be watered at any time
Hope these guidelines help you maintain your yards this year without any repercussions. Also, please remember that some water uses, like washing your car, are illegal no matter what day of the week or what time of day. For more information, be sure to visit the Georgia Urban Agriculture Council.