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Posted on: May 31, 2018

City Urges Water Conservation as Aquifer Level Falls

The City of San Marcos is urging water conservation because of rapidly dropping aquifer levels and the prospect of Stage 2 drought rules quickly approaching.

Stage 2 is implemented when the 10-day average Edwards Aquifer index well level falls below 650 feet above mean sea level (msl). Monitoring wells indicate the aquifer level is dropping about one foot per day.

“We’re starting summer with above average temperatures and below average rainfall, with few prospects for any rain in the coming weeks.” said Tom Taggart, Executive Director of Public Services. “It’s absolutely necessary that everyone cut back a little to avoid Stage 3 or Stage 4 water restrictions later this summer.”

Conservation tips

Customers are being asked to help the community conserve water by taking a few simple measures:

  • Check your irrigation system to make sure it is functioning properly. The City offers free irrigation system evaluations for residential water customers – call 512.393.8308.
  • Use mulch in gardens, landscape beds and around trees to insulate the soil and hold moisture in. The City offers a rebate for mulch; visit for more information.
  • Leave your grass a little longer, removing no more than one-third of the grass blade when mowing. This helps to shade the soil and slow evaporation.
  • If you have a swimming pool, make sure to cover it when not in use to slow evaporation.
  • Collect air conditioning condensate to use for watering plants.

Stage 1 rules

San Marcos entered Stage 1 drought restrictions effective May 27. The Edwards Aquifer Authority implemented Stage 1 on May 21.

Stage 1 drought rules restrict use of sprinklers to one day per week on a designated weekday determined by address. Irrigation using hose-end sprinklers is allowed on the designated weekday before 10 a.m. or after 8 p.m. Irrigation with automatic irrigation systems is allowed on the designated weekday beginning at 8 p.m. and ending the following morning at 8 a.m.

Hand watering and using soaker hoses or drip irrigation is allowed on any day and at any time.

Stage 1 rules also limit at-home car washing, washing of impervious surfaces and foundation watering to one day per week. Wasting water is prohibited.

Full text of the Stage 1 rules can be found on the City of San Marcos website at

 For more information please visit the City of San Marcos website at or call 512.393.8310.

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