Your Water is Our Promise

Your Water is Our Promise: The CVWD Blog

May 11

Project will expand nonpotable water to nine new users

Posted on May 11, 2022 at 9:06 AM by Jesse Ruiz

NPW Pipeline ConnectionCVWD Board of Directors authorized staff May 10 to seek bids for design and construction of a multiyear project that will take nine customers off groundwater.

The 2020-2021 Nonpotable Water Pipeline Connection Project will deliver about 5,200 acre-feet of nonpotable water per year for turf irrigation. The water will originate from the District’s largest water reclamation plant in Palm Desert to the customers’ existing on-site storage facilities.

The new connections will serve seven golf courses including Annenberg Estate, Rancho Mirage Country Club, and Tamarisk Country Club in Rancho Mirage; Suncrest Country Club in Palm Desert; Jack Ivey Ranch Country Club and Tri-Palm Estates and Country Club in Thousand Palms; and Palm Royale Country Club in La Quinta. The 12 miles of new pipeline will also bring nonpotable water for landscape irrigation to Indian Wells Tennis Garden and Southwest Community Church in Indian Wells.

Total cost of the project is $32,530,000. Design plans for the project are expected to be complete in June 2022.

In a related matter, the board authorized a nonpotable water agreement for the Jack Ivey Ranch Homeowners Association in Thousand Palms.  Currently, the Jack Ivey Ranch Country Club irrigates its golf course and landscape with groundwater from a well.  Plans call for connecting Jack Ivey Ranch to the nonpotable water distribution system in summer 2024.

The board also:

  • Adopted new sanitation rates and charges for fiscal years 2023-2027 based on a cost of service study launched in August 2021. The new rates effective July 1, 2022 reflect a 7.8 percent increase in fiscal 2023. For instance, a residential monthly charge in 2022 is $1.55. In 2023, the charge will be $1.69.  
  • Recognized retirements of  Customer Service Representative Ofelia Navarro,25 years;  Welder George Escobedo, 19 years; Chemist Michael Stenzel, 30 years; and Cross Connection Tech Steve Hodges, 14 years.
  • Clarified that the $67.5 million in federal funding CVWD recently received is a loan, not a grant. The funds are earmarked for replacing irrigation lateral pipelines that branch off the Coachella Canal and the proposed Mid-Canal Storage Project for the canal.
Apr 26

May in your desert garden

Posted on April 26, 2022 at 11:38 AM by Jesse Ruiz

Reduce_Irrigation_Times_Fall.jpgCoachella Valley gardeners face not only a hot summer, but also a hot summer with continued drought. While this area faces fewer water challenges than many parts of the state, wise desert gardeners follow drought gardening precepts.

Here are tips from the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

Water-saving plant tips

  • Remove plants in crowded beds or low-priority plants competing for soil moisture.
  • Mulch, mulch, mulch.
    • 3” to 4” layer reduces water evaporation and weeds
    • Protects roots from heat
    • Reduces weeds that compete for water
  • Avoid heavy pruning
  • Avoid overuse of fertilizer, which increases growth and water demands.
  • Fewer deep watering encourages deeper root growth and results in plants with greater drought tolerance.
  • Use a drip irrigation system, grouping plants with similar needs together on one drip irrigation line.
  • Even California native plants are not drought-resistant until they are well established. Replace water-needy plants with low water users in the fall, allowing them time to establish before winter rains.

Tree care

When water is limited, most people choose to water fruit trees, landscape trees and shrubs. Lawns, groundcovers and bedding plants can be re-established over a relatively short time, but trees and shrubs need years to mature.

Here are some low-water use trees that will thrive in the Coachella Valley: acacia, palo blanco, tree of heaven, desert hackberry, carob, Texas olive, Indian rosewood, Texas ebony, honey locust, chinaberry, olive, desert ironwood, palo verde, mesquite, Mexican buckeye and Texas mountain laurel.

For more ideas

“Lush and Efficient: Desert-Friendly Landscaping in the Coachella Valley” lists more than 300 plants with over 800 photos. You can search by several dozen categories. Find the 160-page book at our CVWD Store for $10 with free shipping. Or, look at a PDF of the book online.

Mar 31

April in Your Desert Garden

Posted on March 31, 2022 at 1:14 PM by Jesse Ruiz

Managing soils and pruning shrubs photoApril is a great garden month in the Coachella Valley as the color season reaches its peak. The danger of frost has passed, so now is the ideal time to plant subtropicals that are sensitive to cold such as bougainvillea, hibiscus, lantana, cape honeysuckle, and citrus.

As it grows warmer this month, winter annuals will begin to sag. Remove them as they fade or die out.

Plant warm-season annuals in sunny beds with prepared soil. Marigolds, periwinkles and zinnias will do well. Pune and thin Senna and Texas rangers lightly after flowering stops. You want to control growth and keep natural forms, yet increase plant spread and create additional wood for the next flowering season.

Citrus tips

Plant in a full-sun location or one with some afternoon shade.

Space grapefruit trees 20 feet apart, most other citrus 15 feet apart.

Build a basin around the tree at least 4 feet in diameter with sides about 6 inches high. Fill basin and soak soil to 2 feet deep at least twice a week in April and May. Soak to 3 feet deep about twice a week June through September. In winter months, water every 10-12 days. In a year, water the established tree as a mature tree.

Apply mulch over the basin area and well away from the trunk

Fertilize your citrus tree once a month until September. Use these holidays as a reminder to fertilize: Easter, Memorial Day, and Labor Day.

Other tasks:

  • Set out culinary herbs like mint, rosemary, sage, parsley, and thyme. Basil is the prime summer herb.
  • Apply more water to vegetable and fruit crops.
  • Continue to plant and transplant warm-season vegetable crops. Consider onions, garlic, potatoes, tomatoes, sweet corn, squash, gourds, eggplant, pepper sand melons. Choose short-days-to maturity fruiting varieties before average temperatures hit 100 F.
  • Create a pollinator garden. Lantana, verbena, lavender, penstemon and salvia are options.
  • Many desert shrubs attract hummingbirds and bees. Desert milkweed planted in bulk attracts both queen and monarch butterflies.
  • Remove weeds and Bermuda grass from flowerbeds and gardens.
  • Deadhead spent flowers and fertilize roses after each bloom period for a last crop before hot weather.

Free webinar:

Are you houseplants droopy? Join our webinar from noon to 1 p.m. April 6. A  Master Gardener will tell how to keep your houseplants happy and healthy. Register here or click on cvwd.org/280/Residential.

For more help

“Lush and Efficient: Desert-Friendly Landscaping in the Coachella Valley” lists more than 300 plants with over 800 photos. You can search by several dozen categories. Find the 160-page book at CVWD.org/store for $10 with free shipping. Or, look at a PDF of the book at CVWD.org, click on Conservation.