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Old 12-04-2018, 09:30 PM
 
15 posts, read 13,816 times
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Dear all,
We plan to settle down soon in SF.
My wife would like to garden extensively.
I learnt that SF frequently suffers from severe droughts. Does that mean that the water comes at high price ?
Moreover, I saw that some properties include a well or access to a common well. What are the rules related to the use of the (possibly shared) well ?
thanks in advance
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Old 12-05-2018, 05:33 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
102,293 posts, read 108,372,129 times
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I don't know how well use is regulated in time of drought.

Even with water restrictions in SF summers, according to a water utility spokeswoman, the price doesn't go up significantly, unless you're more of an industrial user, or water your years several times/week extensively.

Gardening in the Southwest is very tricky, though. I was never able to do it successfully, because the days are so hot and the sun is so intense (due to the high altitude), that plants would wither even if I watered them every other day, sometimes even daily.

I learned from a local, who had grown up here, and whose family went back generations in NM, that what you need to do, is plant where there is partial shade, so that the plants are only exposed to direct sun a very few hours/day.

I've had Native American friends here, who always talk about gardening, but I never understood how they do it. The above explanation must explain some of it: strategic planting locations. I had a Hopi friend, who always had a corn patch growing in his backyard, no matter where he rented in SF. I guess corn can handle the intense sun??? I guess locally-evolved corn can handle the conditions. Corn was developed in Mexico originally, so I guess it can handle the conditions.

OP, I don't know where you're moving to NM from, but your wife should do some research on local growing conditions and gardening strategies. There are gardening supply stores, that offer classes, too.
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Old 12-05-2018, 05:44 PM
 
Location: Sacramento Mtns of NM
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It goes without saying that the key to successful gardening anywhere is use of plants native to the area. Nothing is more important than drought-resistant plants in the southwest. It's interesting how desert plants that grow slowly normally will become enormous with regular irrigation.


Another important element of successful desert gardening is a drip irrigation system. Installing a timer will insure that plantings are watered on a regular schedule, regardless of weather changes. It's pretty amazing to see a yard that has drip irrigation/timer vs a yard that relies on the owner's memory.



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Old 12-09-2018, 01:12 PM
 
Location: Santa Fe, NM
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I'll also mention that depending on where you live you may have water rights. If there is a private well, then that well will come with a "license" from the state engineer for a specific volume of water to be used (expressed in acre feet per year) per year and for the purpose (household/agriculture/livestock). In a shared well situation, the well will come with an acre feet per year volume limit which is to be shared among the well users. In this situation there will be a formal well share agreement recorded with the state engineer's office that will define the amount each user/household can use per year. All wells are supposed to be metered, and usage reported to the state engineer's office.
If you are not on a well or in a well share, then your water will cost you based on usage, and rates are tiered so as you use more and move up to a higher tier, you pay more per gallon. I'm not aware that there is any limitation on how much you can use - you will just have to pay for your usage.
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Old 12-10-2018, 12:34 PM
 
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Doeas that mean that you don't pay at all for the water if you run on a well until you reach the mentioned limit ?
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Old 12-12-2018, 04:33 PM
 
Location: Santa Fe, NM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdouble View Post
Doeas that mean that you don't pay at all for the water if you run on a well until you reach the mentioned limit ?
Correct - you do not pay for your water if you have a well. I’ve never seen homeowners exceed the amount granted for a well so I do not know what the State Engineer does if someone were to report an annual usage above the allowance.
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Old 12-13-2018, 09:17 AM
 
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That's a great info, thanks.
We are actually not from the US. This is something new to us.
I'm more a city man but my wife is more country-oriented.
For some reason, she has in mind to buy a large house with 2+ acres and grow vegetable in Santa Fe to sell them at the farmers market.. I try to fight but... as usual.. you see. I'll surrender.
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Old 12-13-2018, 11:20 AM
 
Location: Santa Fe, NM
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I have a friend who lives in Eldorado on a shared well. I am not sure, but I think one of the owners four homes on the shared well is designated as the well 'administrator' or something like that, and I think she pays a minimal fee monthly or quarterly to him (like maybe $10 a month).

FYi - info about becoming a vendor at the Santa Fe farmers market....
https://santafefarmersmarket.com/for...dor-info-page/
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Old 12-13-2018, 01:33 PM
 
Location: New Mexico U.S.A.
26,527 posts, read 51,889,546 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sdouble View Post
For some reason, she has in mind to buy a large house with 2+ acres and grow vegetable in Santa Fe to sell them at the farmers market..
Empty 2.0 acre lots appear to be selling for about $105,000 to $325,000 in Santa Fe...
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Old 12-13-2018, 04:48 PM
 
Location: Santa Fe, NM
974 posts, read 2,348,806 times
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Cost of lots depend on several factors: location, views and whether the lot is "developed" - meaning are the utilities there.
From what the OP is looking for, you'd want a lot with either a well, a shared well, or one that the State Engineer will grant a permit for drilling a well. On a shared well you'd want to find out how much water you can use per annum. In those shared well situations, the only cost would be your share of utilities (i.e. electricity for the pump) and maintenance (if, for instance a pump needed replacement). If it was a private well, then those costs would be yours alone.

Some areas around the city (not in the city) are more conducive to raising crops than others. And as you probably know, Santa Fe has a robust Farmers Market and support for farmers. Living in the country and having chickens, I have to say I'm on your wife's side of the argument! Just surrender to it and be happy.
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