California Approaches Driest Year Yet; Help Conserve Water with These Steps

California is on the cusp of the worst drought in its history. Today, more than 95% of the state is in “severe drought,” and there is simply not enough water to meet the needs of California’s homes, businesses, farms and wildlife.

The Office of Governor Gavin Newsom and the California Department of Water Resources are urging residents and businesses to prepare for record hot weather and water supply shortages by learning how they can help to conserve the state’s limited water supplies. Small and consistent changes to reduce water use daily will make an impact in the long run.

Approximately 50% of home water use is dedicated to outdoor purposes, but there are ways to significantly reduce water usage outside.

Easy, actionable steps businesses and Californians can take today include:

  • Turn off your sprinklers and other irrigation systems when rain is in the weather forecast.
  • Prioritize watering your trees when faced with watering restrictions: Remember, trees are an investment. It will take more water, time and money to replace a mature tree lost to drought than to keep one alive.
  • Replace grass with drought-resistant landscaping or turf: Water-wise plants and landscaping use little or no water once established.
  • Install automatic shut off valves for your outdoor sprinkler systems: Installing a drip irrigation system and a smart controller can save 15 gallons each time you water.
  • Plant water-wise plants: Check with your local water agency on the best plants for your climate. It is best to use water-wise, California-native plants where possible.
  • Lay mulch around your plants and yard: Laying 2–4 inches of organic mulch around your yard can keep the soil moist and reduce water use.

Learn more about how to help conserve water at