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Old 01-08-2016, 08:16 PM
 
Location: University City, Philadelphia
22,592 posts, read 12,340,040 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robyn55 View Post

I assume you're still in Philadelphia. Have you been there most of your adult life? Or did you move from elsewhere? Robyn
My hometown is Hollywood, Florida.

Yes I still live in Philadelphia.
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Old 01-08-2016, 09:06 PM
 
14,260 posts, read 23,995,588 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robyn55 View Post
When I go to the Phoenix metro area - it seems to me like many older areas are wasteful when it comes to water - but newer areas aren't. Are there differences when it comes to water use/allowances/prices depending on when your place was built? Robyn

I am rather unimpressed with water conservation in Arizona.

In Tucson, they do pretty well with not having a lot of green lawns in favor of more desert landscaping. However, the plumbing fixtures in the older places - and some of the newer ones - are not as water efficient as the ones we places in our place in Illinois.

In Phoenix, there is grass everywhere - all requiring watering.
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:01 PM
 
Location: Amongst the AZ Cactus
7,074 posts, read 4,925,427 times
Reputation: 7701
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robyn55 View Post
Yes. We have been on mandatory water restrictions in terms of things like residential irrigation for perhaps a decade+ now. We also have tiered water pricing here in NE Florida (the more you use - the more you pay per gallon - which is legal here in Florida but apparently illegal in some liberal states like California). There are regional conflicts within Florida. Us conservative folk up here in NE Florida have accepted this water stuff - grudgingly. But the more liberal folk down south not only won't accept these limits (they insist on their have to be watered every day impatiens) - they want us to divert the water we're saving to them too. So there is a lot of fighting within the state. Much like there is between Florida and Georgia these days when it comes to water.

BTW - the article you linked is from 2011 - when we were having a minor drought. The most recent major drought was in 1998-1999. Quite awful. There were lots of fires too. That's when we implemented most of our current water restrictions.

When I go to the Phoenix metro area - it seems to me like many older areas are wasteful when it comes to water - but newer areas aren't. Are there differences when it comes to water use/allowances/prices depending on when your place was built? Robyn
Interesting on the water details in FL....thanks for the specifics/details. I didn't realize the fighting going on within the state over water. Seems most unfair that some in other parts of FL don't want to share in the conservation efforts that your part of the state is participating in.

Yes, good observation in regards to the older parts of Phoenix/other suburbs. As you noticed you'll see bigger lots overall with often lots more grass/full lawns. Some of these areas also use flood irrigation to water the lawns/landscape. And correct, the newer areas(I'd say starting roughly 20 years or so ago) have mostly crushed granite stone "lawns". In the newer communities, the people who have have grass, is usually by personal choice limited to small patches maybe in the backyard for a dog or just for whatever. Most of the newer communities are in HOA's and within them you'll also often see grass in the common areas. We live in a master planned community and have a few lakes and grass surrounding them. Some of the watering done in the Phoenix metro for grass common areas and golf courses use treated/effluent water. I understand some of the lakes also use treated/effluent to fill them up.

We haven't had any mandatory restrictions on water use in the suburb we live in or in the Phoenix metro that I'm aware of other than to receive pamphlets/announcements to conserve water. Libraries and cities often have free classes on how to conserve water, plant choice, how to properly water plants to efficiently use water, etc. The water rates depend on what water company serves your community/city. You can have a private company or a city providing your water. We also have tier pricing that sounds similar to what you have in your part of FL. Where we live, city water is our provider and for 0-6,000 gallons, the rate is $1.47 per 1,000 gallons. 6,001-12,000 gallons goes up to $2.93 per 1,000 gallons. To me that's still ultra cheap and rates were just raised.

Personally, I love our "lawn" of crushed rock and have zero grass. At our house, the vast majority of our landscaping is native plants/xeriscape native trees/cactus/agave's/succulents/low water palm trees and hardscape that in my opinion looks very attractive/lush and uses very little water. While we have some plants that require more water like our orange, grapefruit, kumquat, fig, and a few other tropical vines/shrubs, like FL, there are so many attractive plants that thrive out here with little to zero supplemental water, it's easy to be water friendly if one chooses. Plus I despise lawns on many levels so thank goodness for crushed stone "lawns".
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Old 01-08-2016, 10:11 PM
 
Location: Amongst the AZ Cactus
7,074 posts, read 4,925,427 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlawrence01 View Post
I am rather unimpressed with water conservation in Arizona.

In Tucson, they do pretty well with not having a lot of green lawns in favor of more desert landscaping. However, the plumbing fixtures in the older places - and some of the newer ones - are not as water efficient as the ones we places in our place in Illinois.

In Phoenix, there is grass everywhere - all requiring watering.
The newer subdivisions in the Phoenix metro are becoming much more water conservative in regards to crushed stone instead of lawn and more desert landscaping. I've noticed even tree choice around the newer parts of the metro in homes and commercial buildings are either native like Palo Verde's or low water use varieties like Mulga, Willow, and shoestring Acacia's from Australia.

But yes, I agree with you and think that Tucson overall is more natural/desert landscaping overall. I wonder if part of that is due to any water restrictions/higher water rates in Tucson? I understand Tucson doesn't have the underground supply of water and the Salt River basin that Phoenix is lucky to have.

Interesting how Phoenix only uses 2/3 of it's allocation of water from the Colorado, sending excess down to Tucson:

http://www.azcentral.com/story/news/...cson/16540877/
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Old 01-09-2016, 07:02 AM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra Beach FL
14,628 posts, read 17,932,507 times
Reputation: 6716
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevek64 View Post
Interesting on the water details in FL....thanks for the specifics/details. I didn't realize the fighting going on within the state over water. Seems most unfair that some in other parts of FL don't want to share in the conservation efforts that your part of the state is participating in.

Yes, good observation in regards to the older parts of Phoenix/other suburbs. As you noticed you'll see bigger lots overall with often lots more grass/full lawns. Some of these areas also use flood irrigation to water the lawns/landscape. And correct, the newer areas(I'd say starting roughly 20 years or so ago) have mostly crushed granite stone "lawns". In the newer communities, the people who have have grass, is usually by personal choice limited to small patches maybe in the backyard for a dog or just for whatever. Most of the newer communities are in HOA's and within them you'll also often see grass in the common areas. We live in a master planned community and have a few lakes and grass surrounding them. Some of the watering done in the Phoenix metro for grass common areas and golf courses use treated/effluent water. I understand some of the lakes also use treated/effluent to fill them up.

We haven't had any mandatory restrictions on water use in the suburb we live in or in the Phoenix metro that I'm aware of other than to receive pamphlets/announcements to conserve water. Libraries and cities often have free classes on how to conserve water, plant choice, how to properly water plants to efficiently use water, etc. The water rates depend on what water company serves your community/city. You can have a private company or a city providing your water. We also have tier pricing that sounds similar to what you have in your part of FL. Where we live, city water is our provider and for 0-6,000 gallons, the rate is $1.47 per 1,000 gallons. 6,001-12,000 gallons goes up to $2.93 per 1,000 gallons. To me that's still ultra cheap and rates were just raised.

Personally, I love our "lawn" of crushed rock and have zero grass. At our house, the vast majority of our landscaping is native plants/xeriscape native trees/cactus/agave's/succulents/low water palm trees and hardscape that in my opinion looks very attractive/lush and uses very little water. While we have some plants that require more water like our orange, grapefruit, kumquat, fig, and a few other tropical vines/shrubs, like FL, there are so many attractive plants that thrive out here with little to zero supplemental water, it's easy to be water friendly if one chooses. Plus I despise lawns on many levels so thank goodness for crushed stone "lawns".
People fight over water in lots of places/states. Here - one of the biggest fights is between north Florida/environmentalists and central Florida in terms of water from the St. Johns River:

River battle: Central Florida and St. Johns Riverkeeper clash over water usage | jacksonville.com

Rock doesn't work well in terms of a "ground cover" here. Because we need to allow our rain water to trickle down into the ground (our main source of water is the subterranean Florida aquifer). Also because we need something that is "spongier" in terms of absorbing often heavy (summer) rain. When I've been in Phoenix during monsoon season - it sometimes seem like the water flows during/after a downpour are more than a little out of control (there are recognized paths for the water - including arroyos - but some of them seem to be in the middle of major roads ).

Also - a lot of our native wildlife (unlike the wildlife I've seen in Arizona) isn't used to living around rocks. We have 20+ species of birds in our yard over the course of a year - squirrels - turtles - snakes - rabbits - field mice - raccoons - armadillos - butterflies - bugs - the occasional deer - etc. And I think they would be pretty unhappy if we re-decorated their home "Arizona style" .

I'm not particularly fond of grass myself. But have some. Also - our native plants/shrubs/trees - aren't like desert vegetation that is used to being wet a couple of times a year - and then dry the rest of the year. At best - they need some water in the dry/dormant season - and a fair amount in the wet/growing season. Also - although some (not all) natives are somewhat drought tolerant - they aren't drought resistant or drought proof. Most of our 3/4 acre lot is covered with natives - and we lost a lot of nice specimens during the drought of '98-'99 (we were limited to hand-watering then - and spent our time trying to save the best/oldest specimens).

I think many places in many parts of the country use "gray water" for irrigation these days. I see it a lot on golf courses here and elsewhere. Our "lakes" here are mostly man-made retention ponds - designed to collect excess rainwater. No one fills them up - except "mother nature" when it rains a lot. You wouldn't want to fill them up with "gray water" - because it would trickle down into the aquifer.

Our local water rates are a fair amount higher than yours. Not cheap.

Single Family:
Current Rates

WATER
Monthly Rate
$12.08 Base

Block 1 (0 - 5,000 gallons)
$3.07 per 1,000

Block 2 (5,001 - 10,000 gallons)
$3.83 per 1,000

Block 3 (10,001 - 20,000 gallons)
$6.46 per 1,000

Block 4 (20,001 gallons and over)
$9.37 per 1,000

Overall - I think Florida and Arizona are pretty different in a lot of ways. Including water and the best ways to deal with/use/conserve it. Robyn
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Old 01-09-2016, 07:13 AM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra Beach FL
14,628 posts, read 17,932,507 times
Reputation: 6716
Quote:
Originally Posted by stevek64 View Post
The newer subdivisions in the Phoenix metro are becoming much more water conservative in regards to crushed stone instead of lawn and more desert landscaping. I've noticed even tree choice around the newer parts of the metro in homes and commercial buildings are either native like Palo Verde's or low water use varieties like Mulga, Willow, and shoestring Acacia's from Australia.

But yes, I agree with you and think that Tucson overall is more natural/desert landscaping overall. I wonder if part of that is due to any water restrictions/higher water rates in Tucson? I understand Tucson doesn't have the underground supply of water and the Salt River basin that Phoenix is lucky to have.

Interesting how Phoenix only uses 2/3 of it's allocation of water from the Colorado, sending excess down to Tucson:

Phoenix to start saving excess water in Tucson
Seems that attitudes in Tucson are different than those in Phoenix:

Tucson Beats Phoenix in Conserving Water Tucson 2013 NYTSJI | The New York Times Student Journalism Institute - Tucson, Arizona 2013 at the University of Arizona

Rates are higher in Tucson too:

Tucson water rates higher than Phx, usage lower here

Also - Phoenix saves some of its water allocation because it apparently claims more than it needs:

Phoenix to start saving excess water in Tucson

Robyn
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Old 01-09-2016, 07:22 AM
 
2,627 posts, read 4,953,885 times
Reputation: 2225
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jo48 View Post
We've lived in Florida for 10 years and came here for a job. My husband is retiring and we are moving back North soon. We are leaving Florida to be closer to our kids, grand kids, AND the weather.

People have made some very valid points. There is a major difference in the weather in North and South Florida. On any given day, there can be a 20 degree, plus more humidity, difference in say from Jacksonville to where we are in Naples.

To be happy living in Florida year round, you better be prepared to like HOT (90's) and humid weather from about May through October. I think a lot of people do not realize this. They only think about what the weather is like in the Winters. I have known a few people who were Snowbirds and then moved here year round. They were SHOCKED at how hot it was in the Summers. One woman said she could believe that it was in the mid 80's in November. Yep, not unusual. Then there is the HUMIDITY when you are near the coastline. That can be year round. Until we moved here, I just could not imagine it could still be humid with temps in the 60's!

Isn't all of this the major (weather) difference between Florida and Arizona? I know Arizona can get extremely hot also, but does it have Florida's humidity?
I moved to south Florida (Miami-Dade county) from the Midwest over 40 years ago for a job. My work required me to be outdoors ~ 10 hours every week. I've had it with heat and humidity. Now that I am retired, I will be moving back to the Midwest. I miss the seasons, I want to be able to enjoy the outdoors several months of the year to go hiking, gardening, go on drives in the country, visit small town museums and festival, etc.

Weather is very important to me, but I can dress more warmly if I want to go on a winter hike. The heat in south Florida, is unending from May through most of October. This year our first cool weather (low temps at night in the 60's) did not occur until Nov. 21! And that only lasted a couple days! December was warm and rainy. Finally, in January, temps have cooled a bit.....low 60's at night, mid 70's during the day, but the humidity is STILL too high for me! I wilt! I know that the Midwest can be humid, at times, but cool fronts move through, even in the summer. This does NOT happen, ever, down here during our summers! Night time temps during our Florida summers, range from 78 to 83! No wind! You have to run the a.c. for months and months and months!
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Old 01-09-2016, 10:39 AM
 
Location: Amongst the AZ Cactus
7,074 posts, read 4,925,427 times
Reputation: 7701
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robyn55 View Post
People fight over water in lots of places/states. Here - one of the biggest fights is between north Florida/environmentalists and central Florida in terms of water from the St. Johns River:

River battle: Central Florida and St. Johns Riverkeeper clash over water usage | jacksonville.com

Rock doesn't work well in terms of a "ground cover" here. Because we need to allow our rain water to trickle down into the ground (our main source of water is the subterranean Florida aquifer). Also because we need something that is "spongier" in terms of absorbing often heavy (summer) rain. When I've been in Phoenix during monsoon season - it sometimes seem like the water flows during/after a downpour are more than a little out of control (there are recognized paths for the water - including arroyos - but some of them seem to be in the middle of major roads ).

Also - a lot of our native wildlife (unlike the wildlife I've seen in Arizona) isn't used to living around rocks. We have 20+ species of birds in our yard over the course of a year - squirrels - turtles - snakes - rabbits - field mice - raccoons - armadillos - butterflies - bugs - the occasional deer - etc. And I think they would be pretty unhappy if we re-decorated their home "Arizona style" .

I'm not particularly fond of grass myself. But have some. Also - our native plants/shrubs/trees - aren't like desert vegetation that is used to being wet a couple of times a year - and then dry the rest of the year. At best - they need some water in the dry/dormant season - and a fair amount in the wet/growing season. Also - although some (not all) natives are somewhat drought tolerant - they aren't drought resistant or drought proof. Most of our 3/4 acre lot is covered with natives - and we lost a lot of nice specimens during the drought of '98-'99 (we were limited to hand-watering then - and spent our time trying to save the best/oldest specimens).

I think many places in many parts of the country use "gray water" for irrigation these days. I see it a lot on golf courses here and elsewhere. Our "lakes" here are mostly man-made retention ponds - designed to collect excess rainwater. No one fills them up - except "mother nature" when it rains a lot. You wouldn't want to fill them up with "gray water" - because it would trickle down into the aquifer.

Our local water rates are a fair amount higher than yours. Not cheap.

Single Family:
Current Rates

WATER
Monthly Rate
$12.08 Base

Block 1 (0 - 5,000 gallons)
$3.07 per 1,000

Block 2 (5,001 - 10,000 gallons)
$3.83 per 1,000

Block 3 (10,001 - 20,000 gallons)
$6.46 per 1,000

Block 4 (20,001 gallons and over)
$9.37 per 1,000

Overall - I think Florida and Arizona are pretty different in a lot of ways. Including water and the best ways to deal with/use/conserve it. Robyn
Yes, we get some big dumps of rain during the monsoon. Our street can turn into a small river on the edges during a short burst of rain. I've been in some heavy thunderstorms in FL but can't recall if the rain comes down in the same intensity in regards to soil absorption. The crushed stone on properties are only a few inches thick and native soil exists underneath so I'm guessing it doesn't affect soil absorption much in that regard after a rain. The interesting part about the crushed stone as "lawns" is that it's unnatural really vs what's in the natural desert which in the Sonoran desert is hard packed dirt and some scattered vegetation. We have a lot of bird species here too and animal life like rabbits, hummingbirds, mice, bobcats(you'll see them walking on the tops of our block walls once in a while), coyotes, bugs, etc in addition to many reptiles and they seem to not mind the crushed stone though perhaps if they could request it, they'd pick grass. We live in the desert foothill mountains with lots of open desert surrounding us so we see many of these bird species around our yard, including the hummingbirds as we have a few feeders:

Birds of Desert Washes and Foothills in the in the Sonoran Desert

Every year we have Gambel's Quail in our backyard that nest. They build their nest on the ground and lay their eggs directly on the crushed rock....go figure! When they hatch, the babies hang around our yard with the parents for a few weeks and feed in our backyard.

Interesting on the FL water rates vs AZ. I'm surprised how much higher they are. Your url on Tucson show water rates as much higher than Phoenix metro rates. I have a feeling those rates are a big reason for the more native/low water vegetation that exists there.

But yes, FL and AZ are indeed different in many ways. On the same side, I love gardening/plants and I think both FL and AZ are a gardeners paradise.
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Old 01-09-2016, 02:59 PM
 
Location: Wasilla, AK
7,259 posts, read 4,143,320 times
Reputation: 15697
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robyn55 View Post
Our local water rates are a fair amount higher than yours. Not cheap.

Single Family:
Current Rates

WATER
Monthly Rate
$12.08 Base

Block 1 (0 - 5,000 gallons)
$3.07 per 1,000

Block 2 (5,001 - 10,000 gallons)
$3.83 per 1,000

Block 3 (10,001 - 20,000 gallons)
$6.46 per 1,000

Block 4 (20,001 gallons and over)
$9.37 per 1,000

Overall - I think Florida and Arizona are pretty different in a lot of ways. Including water and the best ways to deal with/use/conserve it. Robyn

That's pretty cheap water. I pay $46 in Alaska and about half that amount in Arizona. And Alaska is flush with water.
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Old 01-09-2016, 03:44 PM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra Beach FL
14,628 posts, read 17,932,507 times
Reputation: 6716
Quote:
Originally Posted by AlaskaErik View Post
That's pretty cheap water. I pay $46 in Alaska and about half that amount in Arizona. And Alaska is flush with water.
$46 for how much? I use a touch over 20,000 gallons a month (in the summer - mostly for irrigation - I use less in the winter). Which runs about $175-200/month. Robyn
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