GEORGETOWN, Texas - The City of Georgetown has announced effective immediately that water utility customers should not water lawns or landscapes during the heat of the day, defined as noon to 7 p.m.
The order comes as the city says its entering Phase I of its drought contingency plan, which is in response to the Brazos River Authority entering Stage 1 Drought Watch for Lake Georgetown.
In addition, Georgetown water utility customers need to follow the two-day watering schedule and refrain from watering their lawns on Mondays. The year-round, two-day per week irrigation schedule is based on the last digit of the street address. The watering schedule can be seen below and is also posted online here.
Irrigation is not permitted on Mondays, because Mondays are a maintenance and recovery day for the water system. The two-day schedule spreads watering over six days each week in order to balance demand on the water system. Watering with a hand-held hose or bucket can be done any day and at any time. Other outdoor water uses like washing a vehicle or filling a swimming pool, can be done any day at any time.
Violations of the irrigation schedule and watering during the heat of the day may result in fines. Officials say the city is not running out of water but says that conservation during the hottest and driest parts of the year helps ensure availability for all who need it. It also helps ensure adequate water supply during the hotter summer months.
Lake Georgetown is in Stage 1 Drought Watch due to drier-than-normal conditions in portions of the Brazos River basin and drought trigger levels set by the BRA’s Drought Contingency Plan. As of March 23, Lake Georgetown was at 76% of full capacity, according to the authority. Williamson County is also in a moderate drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor’s March 18 update.
During the summer months, officials say 75% of the drinking water treated each day in the city is used to irrigate lawns and landscapes. Following the city’s two-day watering schedule and adjusting irrigation run times can help save water and still maintain a healthy lawn.
Officials say the best time for watering your lawn and landscape is on your watering day in the early morning hours after midnight. This allows the water to soak into the soil and reach the roots of your grass and plants. Watering during the heat of the day should be avoided since much of the water sprayed from sprinklers will evaporate and is wasted.
For help setting your irrigation controller, call customer care at 512-930-3640.
Georgetown has several ongoing water utility expansion projects to help meet the needs of its growing population. This includes the expansion of the North Lake Water Treatment Plant, which is expected to be completed in summer 2023, and the construction of a South Lake Water Treatment Plant, which should be operational in 2025.