TGR NEWS - March 2023
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Celebrating National Groundwater Week - March 5-11
Since 1999, groundwater districts, water utilities and other groundwater advocates across the country have come together during National Groundwater Awareness Week (NGAW) to highlight local water issues, explain the essentials of water management and encourage water conservation in their communities. Today, more than 44 percent of the U.S. population depends on groundwater as a primary source of water. Here in Bexar County, most residents are aware of how critical the Edwards Aquifer and Trinity Aquifer groundwater supplies to the sustainability of the overall community.
“While we all still take turning on our water faucets and showers for granted a bit, I do think that many more people are aware of where their primary water supplies come from,” said Trinity Glen Rose District General Manager George Wissmann. “We’ve seen this community come together and conserve water at unprecedented levels over the past few decades and those efforts have gone a long way to preserving our groundwater sources. But the two topics we want to emphasize include pollution prevention and reducing landscape watering by reducing turf grass use and converting our yards to native plant landscapes. If we can be as successful there in the future as we’ve been with general conservation measures in the past, we will definitely take our groundwater preservation successes to a new level. We feel most people will participate, and we’ll be continuing to publish information on how to get that job done.”
Here are the top three ways you can help.
Use native plants in your landscape. They look great, and don’t need much water or fertilizer.
Use fewer chemicals around your home and yard, and make sure to dispose of them properly — don't dump them on the ground.
Properly dispose of potentially toxic substances like unused chemicals, pharmaceuticals, paint, motor oil, and other substances. Many communities hold household hazardous waste collections or sites — contact your local health department to find one near you.
50-Year Water Planning Targets Approved
The Trinity Glen Rose District (TGR) is a member of Groundwater Management area 9 (GMA-9) Joint Planning Group. This group is tasked with long-term planning and management of groundwater resources for the Hill Country Priority Groundwater Management Area. During 2022 the district met with GMA-9 Joint Planning Committee members to develop the 2027 Desired Future Conditions (DFCs), and in November 2022, the Joint Planning committee received its administrative completeness approval from the State of Texas. In February 2023, the TGR board of directors adopted these DFCs for the Trinity Aquifer relevant within the District boundaries.
Desired future conditions are 50-year planning horizons determined by groundwater management areas to protect aquifer conditions for future generations. Currently, the DFC for the GMA-9 region is set to achieve no more than an average 30-foot groundwater drawdown across the GMA-9 planning boundaries.
Go Gardening Features Water Savings, Pruning Tips
Season 2 of Go Gardening is off to a good start, and the next episode, which will be available on Friday, March 3rd, will get you ready for those spring pruning and planning tasks. The show is produced by the Trinity Glen Rose District and Gardening Volunteers to focus on the importance of saving water through best practice landscape maintenance and design.
When the weather starts to get a little warmer, the gardener in us is anxious to get outside to work in the yard. If you’re planning to make some changes in your landscape this year, you won’t want to miss this month’s segment on landscape planning from native plant expert and landscape contractor Travis Barnes. Travis really focuses on saving water for his customers and the large yard he showed us will not even have a sprinkler system installed. Then Go Gardening headed over to Shavano Park to take a look at that City’s low-maintenance, low-water use grounds. And then we got the perfect “how to” in pruning trees and grasses from Mark Peterson, a well-known horticulture expert in San Antonio. You can watch the new Go Gardening episode at the Trinity Glen Rose Groundwater website or the Gardening Volunteers website.
Did you know…
Out of all the freshwater in the world, minus polar ice caps, about
95% is groundwater.
Time to Have your Sprinkler System Checked
July through September is typically the hottest and driest stretch of weather we see in South Texas each year. Any by now you know that means that your water conservation knowledge and skills should be on high alert. Because landscape watering can account for up to 60 percent of the city’s water use during this time of year, the Trinity Glen Rose District always like to remind homeowners and business owners to have their sprinkler systems inspected before the systems are turned on for regular use. Wasted water cannot be retrieved, so you only get one chance to efficiently use the water provided by the city’s water resources such as the Trinity and Edwards Aquifers.
The quickest do-it-yourself way to check your system is to start it up and then inspect each of the sprinkler heads in all of the system’s zones. Look for broken heads or heads that have sunken below ground. Then make sure that the heads are not watering the streets and sidewalks. Then you can observe whether there is adequate water pressure feeding each sprinkler head. A broken pipe or sprinkler head can drain away pressure and waste significant amounts of water.
Also, if you have been slowly and steadily replacing high water use plants with native low water use plants, you might make sure that your sprinkler system either does not water areas with native plants or waters only a little.
Here is some great news for you. The Trinity Glen Rose District and San Antonio Water System have teamed up over the last few years to offer free irrigation system consultation programs. In fact, TGR will give you a $50 coupon to have the consultation done. Just go to www.TrinityGlenRose.com/conservation for more information.
TGR 2021 Annual Report
The Trinity Glen Rose Groundwater Conservation District (TGR) just published its 2021 Annual Report. The TGR board reviewed the report in early March and approved the document for publication at its March meeting.
The 2021 Annual Report provides good background on the:
purpose of the district
well monitoring work
financial position, and
community outreach programs
This year, the District included two charts which outline TGR’s involvement in regional GMA-9 joint water planning efforts required by the State of Texas. The charts provide a 10-year history of water use in the region and how that compares to the region’s goals for water production from the Trinity Aquifer. Those goals are known as “desired future conditions.”