Millions of Metropolitan Water District customers in the Los Angeles area are being called on to eliminate all outdoor watering for 15 days while a pipeline is repaired in September.
A leak was discovered earlier this year in a massive pipeline that delivers water from the Colorado River into Southern California, according to a joint news release from Glendale Water & Power, Foothill Municipal Water District and the Crescenta Valley Water District.
A temporary repair was made to allow the pipe, which measures almost 9 feet 8 inches in diameter, to continue to function at a reduced capacity but now the permanent components are ready for installation and the pipeline will need to be shut off.
“What that means is the water that we’re going to be getting is coming from the State Water Project, which I think everyone is aware is really short on water this year,” Glendale Water and Power spokesperson Mike De Ghetto said.
The project will take 15 days and is scheduled to take place between Sept. 6 and Sept. 20.
That has lead to calls that more than 4 million people suspend all outdoor watering and reduce their regular usage during the repair period.
The increased conservation call includes the cities of Beverly Hills, Burbank, Glendale, Long Beach, Pasadena, San Fernando, San Marino, and Torrance, as well as for areas served by the Central Basin Municipal Water District, Foothill Municipal Water District, Three Valleys Municipal Water District and West Basin Municipal Water District, according to the news release.
The Water District asked that residents concerned about their landscaping keep the pipeline repair at the top of their mind. “It is a small sacrifice for a much larger benefit for all the Southern California cities affected,” the news release stated.
The Water District offered the following tips for both prior to and during the project:
PRIOR TO SHUTDOWN
• Delay all new plantings until after Sept. 20.
• Avoid fertilizing lawns and plants prior to the shutdown.
• Weed your garden to help make more water available for your plants.
• Set your sprinkler timer to the “OFF” position on the evening of Sept. 5.
• Aerate your lawn and add compost two weeks prior to the shutdown.
• Set mowers for a higher cut or avoid mowing. Longer grass helps reduce evaporation.
• Do a normal watering of your lawn according to your agency’s watering schedule prior to September 6th.
• Water deeply and early the morning allowed by your agencies’ current restrictions on the last day prior to Tuesday, September 6th.
• Add mulch around your plants and water beneath mulch.
• Shade your plants where possible with sun cloth, canopy tents or umbrellas.
• Prune plants to reduce leaves.
• Water succulents and other desert plants as normal. Overwatering could harm them.
• On the morning allowed by your agencies’ current restrictions on the last day prior to Tuesday September 6th, deep-water your trees and shrubs with soaker hose or regular hose on a slow trickle. Water until the soil is soaked to a depth of about 8-12 inches.
• Surround the tree with mulch before watering for added moisture retention.
• Remember, native California Oak trees don’t require summer watering.
DURING THE SHUTDOWN (Sept. 6-20)
• Eliminate all outdoor watering.
• Remember, two weeks of no watering will not kill your lawn. Though you will see a noticeable yellowing, it will improve once your previous watering schedule resumes.
• Do not mow your lawn. Minimize the use of your lawn for playing, parking vehicles.
• Put a bucket in your shower to collect water as the shower warms up. Use for houseplants, sensitive outdoor plants and areas of the lawn that may show excessive stress (hot spots).
• Take short showers (5-minute max).
• Do not leave water running when washing dishes. Fill a small bin or bucket with water to wash your dishes in. When you’re done, use that water for trees and grass.
More information about the project can be found on the Water District’s website.