Reclaimed Water Conservation
Q: What is the new reclaimed water schedule?
A: If your address ends with an ODD number, you may use reclaimed water
Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays - 12:00am-6:00am and 8:00pm-12:00am
If your address ends with an EVEN number, you may use reclaimed water
Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays - 12:00am-6:00am and 8:00pm-12:00am
Reclaimed water use is prohibited from 6:00am-8:00pm and on Sundays
Q: What if my watering days/times are different from the Pinellas County schedule?
A: If your property is in the City of St. Pete Beach you should follow this schedule. Pinellas County is the wholesale supplier for reclaimed water but the City of St. Pete Beach administers our reclaimed water system. The Pinellas County schedule applies to property in unincorporated Pinellas and cities which don't administer their own systems.
Q: Why is this necessary?
A: Reclaimed water is a valuable, limited natural resource. It takes the wastewater from 5-6 homes to water just one lawn. Fortunately, since we were an early adopter of reclaimed water, we were able to get our entire city service through the Pinellas reclaimed water system. By using reclaimed water for irrigation, we conserve potable water and reduce our water bills.
During the dry season, there is greater demand on the reclaimed water system, and we need to use it wisely so that all users can benefit from the limited system, and we can realize the greatest environmental benefits. And as Pinellas County continues to pass along their increased costs to us, limiting our use will help offset anticipated rate increases.
Q: What else can we do to reduce our reclaimed water use, help the environment and reduce costs?
• Avoid overwatering. Create deep, healthy root systems through less frequent watering.
• Use your irrigations system's rain sensors or a rain gauge to eliminate unnecessary watering during or after a rain.
• Fix leaks and broken sprinkler heads promptly.
Q: What are the exceptions to this schedule?
A: Low volume and micro-irrigation
Landscape: You may water landscape with low-volume or micro-irrigation methods on any day and at any time.
Lawns: You may water lawns for a spot treatment using low-volume or micro-irrigation methods on any day from 12:00am-6:00am and 8:00pm-12:00am.
"Hand Watering” means watering plants with one hand held hose, fitted with a self-canceling or automatic shutoff nozzle, or a watering can or pail.
“Landscape” means a section of ground adorned or improved by flowering plants (annual or perennial), vines, shrubs, palms, ferns, ornamental grasses, and groundcover other than Lawn.
“Landscape Irrigation” or “landscape use” means the outside watering of shrubbery, trees, lawns, sod, grass, ground covers, plants, vines, ornamental gardens, and such other flora not intended for resale, which are planted and situated in such diverse locations as residential landscapes, recreation areas, cemeteries, public, commercial, and industrial establishments, public medians, and rights-of-way.
“Lawn” means a plot of Turfgrass, usually tended or mowed, surrounding homes, commercial or industrial buildings, government or other non-commercial buildings, parks, recreational areas, Cemeteries, and public or private right-of-ways and medians.
“Low Volume Irrigation” means the use of Hand Watering, Micro-irrigation or other equipment and devices specifically designed to allow the volume of water delivered to be limited to a level consistent with the water requirement of the plant being irrigated and designed to allow that water to be placed with a high degree of efficiency within the root zone of the plant.
“Micro-irrigation” means any Irrigation device that distributes water near or within the root zone through low flow rate and emitters. Examples of Micro-irrigation devices include drip, line source, microspray, microsprinkler, bubbler and similar types of systems. The term specifically includes propagation mist heads, capillary mats and soaker hoses. The term also includes water use in Mist Houses and similar establishments for plant propagation and production but excludes any form of turf irrigation other than in a sod production (“turf farming”) setting.
“Spot Treatment” is the Hand Watering of isolated areas of Turfgrass or other plant material, such as golf course greens, in order to efficiently deliver water needed to provide uniform moisture content as a water-conserving means of compensating for differences in sun exposure, sprinkler coverage, and other site-specific factors.
New Plant Material
You may water new plant material comprising at least 50% of an irrigation zone and its entire zone:
• Immediately prior to installation: on any day at any time
• Day 1: one time on any day at any time
• Day 2- Day 30: on any day from 12:00am-6:00am and 8:00pm-12:00am
You may water new plant material comprising less than 50% of an irrigation zone with low volume, micro-irrigation or hand watering on any day at any time.
“New plant material” means any lawn or landscaping, or portion thereof, which has been planted in existence in the same location for less than sixty (60) days.
You may water-in fertilizers, insecticides, pesticides, fungicides and herbicides on any day at any time when a licensed applicator has posted a temporary sign containing the date of application and the date(s) of needed watering-in activity.
Irrigation System Cleaning, Maintenance and Repair
You may operate your irrigation system for cleaning, maintenance and repair on any day and at any time one time per week, up to 10 minutes per test per zone when an attendant is present in the area of the operation.
Q: How will this be enforced and what are the penalties?
A: After an initial period of enhanced communications and warnings, the City will enforce and issues penalties for violations in accordance with the City Code. The City may terminate reclaimed water service for anyone with more than three violations per year.
Q: How much reclaimed water will we save?
A: The effectiveness of water conservation programs can be difficult to measure. Different elements (metering, day of the week restrictions, time restrictions and education among others) and different local characteristics make studies, comparisons and predictions difficult.
In Pinellas County, by year three of fully implementing similar measures (2011 vs. 2014) reclaimed water use dropped by almost 24%.
The Southwest Florida Water Management District (SWFWMD) states that odd/even water restrictions can reduce reclaimed water use by approximately 100-200 gallons per day per single family residence.
And researchers from UF/IFAS Extension found day of the week water restrictions reduced municipal water use 15-20% in the spring and summer of 2007 in their study area.
Q: What if I need to wash off saltwater spray from my grass and plants?
A: Residents can use low-volume and micro-irrigation methods, including hand watering, to wash off saltwater spray from their grass and plants according to the exceptions listed above.
Also, residents can contact Pinellas County Extension Services for more information about the Florida Friendly Landscaping Program and access “Right Plant, Right Place” and other helpful information.
Or call (727) 582-2100 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Q: How do I report problems?
Q: How do I get more information?
- St. Pete Beach Ordinance (see pages 134-143)
- Southwest Florida Water Management District/ State Code
- Pinellas County Extension Services
Q: How do I contact the City?