Gold is the new green

Gold is the new green

City explains patches of ‘gold’ grass with new tagline on signage and digital communications

The City wants citizens to know the grass isn’t always greener on City property during the drought. Temporary signs are being posted on some City properties where grass is withering due to as much as a 33 percent cutback in watering as compared to an average of the same period in 2012 and 2013. Metal signs are going to be installed at City parks, reminding people of the new color scheme and the City’s website.

“With watering limited to two days a week in the peak of summer, the grass is not dying, but it is stressed,” said Jim Combs, director of Parks and Recreation. “Gold grass should green up again with cooler temperatures and, hopefully, rain in the fall. But for now, we want to keep imploring everyone to do their part ­– even if it’s not pretty.”

The City has also created new signs for residents to put on their lawns telling their neighbors that their gold lawn is helping to mitigate the drought. Signs are available upon request at the Department of Utilities Customer Service Office, 1395 35th Avenue, open Monday through Thursday, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Friday from 8 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

Commercial and residential users are asked to only water two days a week, depending upon the address. Addresses ending in ODD numbers water on Tuesdays and Saturdays; addresses ending in EVEN numbers water on Wednesdays and Sundays. The City is urging residents to check their timers. Property owners and tenants or business owners with regularly professionally maintained yards should remind their landscaper of the City’s watering rules,  ask their landscaper to check the timer and if need be, reset it.

The City’s stage two water shortage contingency plan mirrors the governor’s drought declaration asking for a 20 percent reduction in water use. Businesses and residential users have gradually dropped usage by 17 percent in June as compared to an average of 2012 and 2013. According to the Regional Water Authority, usage in the region is down by 18 percent over the same periods.

Top survey results shared

This week the City closed a survey on Envision Sacramento about water conservation and what else citizens are doing to cut back besides limiting watering to two days a week.

The survey had 53 respondents. The top two responses given about ways to conserve less are:

  • recycle water from sink and/or shower for other uses
  • shorter shower time and/or skip a shower every other day

On the question about if there’s anything else Sacramento water customers (residential and commercial) can do to get to the 20 percent goal, the top three responses are:

  • set water timers
  • plant drought tolerant plants
  • keep an eye out for broken sprinkler heads

For more information about watering restrictions and conservation, go to

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