SAN ANTONIO -

The J-17 well that measures the level of the Edwards Aquifer is closer to going below the 640-foot level, which triggers Stage III water restrictions for San Antonio Water System customers.
"If we have to go into Stage III, that would mean that your sprinkler-system use is restricted to (one day) every other week," said Karen Guz, SAWS Director of Conservation.
Guz said despite the lack of water, lawns can survive Stage III.
"Most of our lawns actually can survive with less than every other week irrigation," Guz said. "It's just when it gets hot, they don't look as green."
On June 1, SAWS will launch a "Water Saver Landscape Program" that offers coupons to help people build more drought-tolerant landscapes in their yards. The coupons will help defray the cost of building a 200-square-foot bed in an area where grass is having a hard time growing.

"That's going to give you a great discount on plants and mulch to put in some drought-hearty, pretty plants that are going to be a lot easier this summer to take care of than that grass has been," Guz said.
Guz added that there will be quite of variety of drought-tolerant plants to choose from.
"A lot of the drought-tolerant plants which are available here are going to be salvias, the rosemaries, the esparanzas, plumbagoes," Guz said.
"All of these a very drought-tolerant and heat-tolerant," said Glenn Gawlick, of Shulz Nurseries, one of many nurseries that will accept the coupons in June and July.
The coupons are available on SAWS website beginning June 1.

To view a list of stories from John Honore, click here.