Drought Status - LEVEL 1 DROUGHT ALERT

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Both Cumming and Forsyth County are under a Level 1 Drought Response Declaration by Georgia EPD. The City would like to remind our residents that general outdoor watering is allowed only between 4:00 pm and 10:00 am. During this time, we must all work together to reduce indoor and outdoor water usage and waste. Being a good steward of our water recourses is easy if you follow these basic steps: 1) regularly check for and repair leaks inside and outside your home. 2) don’t leave the tap running when shaving, brushing your teeth, or washing your face. 3) only water your landscaping when necessary. Make sure your sprinklers are properly adjusted to do their job – water landscaping and not the driveway, sidewalk, or house!


The Finishing Touch for a Great Landscape

Choosing the Right Mulch for You

Mulch can be any of several materials that help keep moisture in your soil and protect the roots of plants, including bark, stones, wood chips, etc.
Proper mulch is the key to:

  • Preventing water loss from your soil
  • Reducing the need for supplemental irrigation and;
  • Finishing off the overall attractiveness of your landscape

Some mulches are more expensive than others, and some are more decorative. To choose the mulch that’s right for you, click here.

Much More About Mulch

Using mulch in your waterSmart landscaping plan is easier than you think, and it’s an important component to your xeriscaped yard. (To learn more about xeriscaping, see below.) For simple guidelines to using mulch click on the link below:

Planting Tips:

  • Apply approximately three inches of mulch under ornamental plants in the landscape (avoid applying too much mulch because it encourages shallow roots)
  • Place newspapers on the soil under organic mulch at planting time to improve water conservation in the soil, thoroughly soak newspapers after applying mulch
  • Extend mulched areas two to three times the canopy spread of ornamental trees and shrubs
  • Once mulch is in place, use your hand to pull it back 2 to 3 inches away from the trunk of trees and shrubs (this will help prevent wood rotting diseases)

Maintenance Tips:

  • During periods of limited rainfall, make certain sufficient mulch is maintained beneath plants
  • Remove organic mulch from around plants and place newspapers two sheets thick on soil surfaces and reapply mulch (be sure to wet the newspapers thoroughly immediately after application or they may pull moisture from the soil)
  • Mulch conserves moisture by preventing evaporative water loss from the soil surface and reducing the need for supplemental irrigation during periods of limited infall.


It’s a big word for a simple idea – grouping plants together for productive growth with less water.

When you apply a few simple water-saving techniques to your landscaping plans, you can create beautiful lanscapes with much less water than you think.

Adjust your thinking to the “lower water zone” and you’ll have beautiful lawns and gardens during times of drought, as well as times of normal rainfall. All it takes is a little research into the kinds of plants that stand up to tough conditions. Once you’ve done the research, just follow some simple steps. It’s inexpensive and anyone can do it. You don’t have to be an expert to plan a beautiful landscape.

Follow these seven simple steps and you will be well on your way to a beautiful lawn and water-efficient landscape.

  • Step 1: Pull out the Sketchpad – Planning For Maximum Growth With Minimum Water
  • Step 2: Get Your Hands Dirty – Easy Ways to Evaluate Your Soil
  • Step 3: Pick the Right Plants – Choose Plants with Similar Water Needs and Plant Together
  • Step 4: Choose Your Turf – Find Out Which Grass is Best for Your Region
  • Step 5: Enter the Water Zone – Plan for Efficient Irrigation
  • Step 6: Apply the Finishing Touch – Use Mulch to Prolong the Life of Plants
  • Step 7: Test Your Green Thumb – Careful Maintenance for a Great-Looking Lawn