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Water Restrictions


  • Permanent Watering Restrictions

    Irrigation Days For Private Residences & Commercial Landscapes:

    Lawn (Turf, Sod or Grass) & Landscape (Garden Plants) Watering

    • Addresses ending in 0, 2, 4, 6, or 8 may only water on Thursday and/or Sunday
    • Addresses ending in 1, 3, 5, 7, or 9 may only water on Wednesday and/or Saturday
    • Properties with no discernible address such as neighborhood entry ways and common areas may only water on Tuesday and/or Friday 

    Rules to Follow:

    • The two day a week schedule above must be followed.
    • Watering is allowed before 10 am or after 4 pm (but not both).
    • All automatic irrigation systems are required to have a working rain shut off device.
    • Variances are available, through the Southwest Florida Water Management District, if a property proposes an alternate irrigation plan (such as splitting a large property into two pieces and assigning a different day to each piece). Download An Application
    • Hand watering (with automatic shut-off device) or micro-irrigation of non-lawn landscaping is not currently restricted by day or times.
    • These restrictions apply to private residences and to commercial landscapes.
    • These rules apply to New Plantings:
      • New plant material may be watered out of cycle for up to 60 days for establishment (Keep a receipt for proof of new material, before and after pictures are also helpful). Here are the guidelines:
        • Days 1 through 30: May water on any day before 10 am or after 4 pm (but not both)  
        • Days 31 through 60: May water on the following days before 10 am or after 4 pm (but not both) :
          • Addresses Ending in 0, 2, 4, 6 or 8 may water Tuesday, Thursday and/or Sunday
          • Addresses Ending in 1, 3, 5, 7 or 9 may water Monday, Wednesday and/or Saturday
          • All locations without a discernible address (such as common areas and subdivision entry ways) may water on Tuesday, Friday and/or Sunday
      • A minimum of 50% the area being watered must contain new plants or sod.
      • New plant material may be watered at any time on the day of planting only.
      • Water before 10 am or after 4 pm (but not both).

    All Water Uses:

    On August 1, 2017 the Modified Phase III Water Shortage per Rule 40D-21 declared by the Governing Board of the Southwest Florida Water Management District expired.  On August 2, 2017 City of Lakeland Customers returned to the permanent Year Round Conservation measures listed above. 

    These restrictions apply to the use of water from public and private water utilities as well as the use of all wells and surface water sources (ponds, rivers, etc.).

    This is only a summary. All water users should review Water Shortage Rules outlined in Rule 40D-22 of the Southwest Florida Water Management District.


    For Additional Information:

    The Southwest Florida Water Management District has a toll-free line (800.848.0499) to provide answers to questions about water restrictions.

    Information on water conservation is also available on the Southwest Florida Water Management District Website.

  • Car & Truck Washing

    Automobile washing is not currently restricted. Residents should be as efficient as possible, so water isn’t wasted.  If possible, wash vehicles in grassy areas to avoid pollution runoff. 

    Using an automatic shut-off nozzle on a hose is required.

  • Fertilizer & Pesticide Applications

    Watering in of pesticides and fertilizers as required by the manufacturer of the product is allowed on any day. However, signs must be posted on the lawn and the date of the application must be written clearly on the sign (See sample below). These applications are not restricted to the appointed irrigation day, but it is recommended to plan applications around your irrigation schedule (not rain events). 

    A photo of a sample sign

     

    According to Green-Industry Best Management Practices, do not apply fertilizers or pesticides prior to a large rain event.  While it is recommended these applications be watered into the landscape, only a quarter of an inch of water is necessary.  Any more than that and most of the product will leach too far into the soil, becoming unavailable for plant use.  This practice will also cutdown on the amount of pesticide and fertilizer that gets washed away in stormwater runoff.  By following the manufacturer label directions on any product applied to your lawn and landscape, you can help minimize pollution and give your plants the best possible growing conditions.

    Do not fertilize dormant or non-growing turfgrass, usually seen during winter months.      

    Fertilizer Best Management Practices for Turfgrass and Landscape

    • Do not fertilize if a heavy rainfall is expected, especially tropical or frontal weather systems. 
    • Match the product to the situation.  After ruling out other issues such as too much shade, overwatering, or other stresses that may be effecting your plants, do a soil test to verify fertilizing is the correct response. This will also help determine what kind of product you need. 
    • Read the label thoroughly! 
    • Know your yard.  Measure the square footage of the area you need to fertilize, follow the label directions for application amount and make sure your spreader/equipment is properly cleaned and calibrated.  Remember that more does not always mean better.  
    • Irrigate 1/4 inch following fertilization to avoid the loss of nitrogen and increase uptake efficiency.  Without proper irrigation, you risk volatilization (the loss of applied nitrogen to the atmosphere as ammonia gas) and inefficient use of fertilizer. 
    • Ensure fertilizer is not left around impervious areas such as streets, driveways, or sidewalks.  These areas allow the fertilizer to runoff into stormdrains and bodies of water.  
    • Always leave a Ring of Responsibility, a preventative buffer that protects against accidental direct contamination of bodies of water.  With liquid fertilizers this is at least 3 feet from the edge of the water.  Granular fertilizers need to be kept 10 feet from shorelines.  Deflector shields can be used when broadcasting.  

     

    Pesticide Best Management Practices for Turfgrass and Landscape 

    • Always observe label directions, restrictions, and precautions.  It is dangerous, wasteful and illegal to do otherwise. 
    • Store pesticides behind locked doors in original containers with labels intact, separate from seed and fertilizer.  
    • Use pesticides at the correct application rate and recommended intervals between applications. 
    • Never eat, drink, or smoke when handling pesticides, and always wash with soap and water after use. 
    • Triple-rinse containers into the spray tank.  Never pour pesticides down the drain or into an area exposed to humans, animals, or water. 
    • Dispose of used containers in compliance with label directions so that water contamination and other hazards will not result. 
    • Always wear protective clothing when applying pesticides.  At a minimum, wear a long-sleeved shirt, long-legged pants, rubber gloves, boots (never go barefoot or wear sandals), eye protection, and a wide-brimmed hat.  Additional protective gear may be listed on the pesticide label. 

     

  • Fountains & Falls

    Runtime of fountains and falls are not currently restricted. 

  • Lawn (Turf, Sod or Grass) & Landscape (Garden Plants)

    Watering Private Residences & Commercial Landscapes

    • Addresses ending in 0, 2, 4, 6, or 8 may only water on Thursday and/or Sunday
    • Addresses Ending in 1, 3, 5, 7 or 9 may only water on Wednesday and/or Saturday
    • Properties with no discernible address (such as common areas and subdivision entry ways) may only water on Tuesday and/or Friday

     


    Rules to Follow

    • The two day a week schedule above must be followed.
    • Watering is allowed before 10 am or after 4 pm (but not both).
    • Variances are available, through the Southwest Florida Water Management District, if a property proposes an alternate irrigation plan (such as splitting a large property into two pieces and assigning a different day to each piece). Download An Application
    • Hand watering (with automatic shut-off device) or micro-irrigation of non-lawn landscaping is not currently restricted by day or times.
    • These restrictions apply to private residences and to commercial landscapes.
  • Pressure Washing

    Pressure washing is not currently restricted.  Pressure washing should be conducted as efficiently as possible to adhere to the general restriction prohibiting wasteful water use.

  • Sprinkler (Irrigation) System Maintenance

    Sprinkler systems may be run a maximum of ten minutes per zone to perform maintenance on the system. Each zone must be attended through the entire run time. Sprinkler maintenance is not restricted to the appointed irrigation days.  Sprinkler maintenance should be conducted as efficiently as possible to adhere to the general restriction prohibiting wasteful water use.

  • Penalties for Violations

    Violations of these restrictions are a civil infraction punishable with fines up to $500:

    • First Violation: Written Warning
    • Second Violation: $35 Fine
    • Third Violation: $75 Fine
    • Fourth or More: Mandatory Court Appearance and up to $500 fine + court costs

    Report a Possible Violation

    Please call City of Lakeland Water Utilities at 863.834.6193 or click here to report now.

    All reports must include date(s), time(s), and the nature of the possible violation(s).