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By Bob Dailey, WJPA
We all take the water we drink, bathe in, or prepare food with, for granted. We assume that the water will always be clean and safe to drink. There is, however, a hidden risk that many people don’t give enough attention to – backflow preventers.
Occasionally, situations take place that can impair the quality of drinking water. One common occurrence is the breaking of a private water supply line or a public water main. When something like this happens, water that is polluted or that may contain harmful contaminants can backflow into the potable system, threatening the quality of our drinking water.
Backflow is generally caused by changes in water pressure. For instance, if a water main breaks or a fire hydrant is activated for fire suppression, pressure goes down and this can cause water to flow opposite of the direction it was meant to travel. That means if your irrigation system is connected to your house piping - soil, fecal bacteria and other contaminants that have entered the irrigation heads and piping can “backflow” into your home drinking water, and perhaps into the public water system.
By Bob Dailey
July is one of the best months to find out where grass is doing well and where it isn’t. Areas with deep shade might do better with some type of shade-tolerant ground cover than with turf grass. Conversely, hot spots in the yard where grass seems to die can be a great place for a shrub that loves heat and lots of sunlight.
Mowing can be problematic as well during times of high heat. Set mowers to their highest level. Mulch, don’t bag. The top third of grass blades is rich in nitrogen. Mulching the grass drops the blades back onto the lawn where they compost back into the soil. Contrary to what some believe, mulching does not cause thatch. Overwatering and overfertilizing causes thatch.
It’s important to check sprinkler systems now. Not all yellow patches are caused by fungal infections like take-all patch or large patch, nor are they all caused by chinch bugs or sod-web worms. Some spotting is caused by poor positioning of sprinkler heads.
Control fire ants by using the Texas two-step method recommended by Texas A&M. A treatment with the organic pesticide Spinosad, followed a few days later by drenching the mound with orange oil is particularly effective on fire ants. A third step, sprinkling diatomaceous earth on the mound, will take care of stragglers.
By Bob Dailey
Most of us in The Woodlands have St. Augustine turf grass. It is, by far, the most shade tolerant of all the warm-season grasses. However, many residents notice their St. Augustine thinning under trees. Here’s the probable reason. When the area was sodded, the tree canopy above it was less dense. Therefore, even though it was planted in shade, it received more filtered sunlight. As the tree canopy grew denser, the grass received less filtered light.
The solution: Lightly prune the tree to allow more light to penetrate through the foliage. Keeping foot traffic to a minimum and setting the mower to its highest level will also help. If all these fail, try replacing the sod with a shade-loving groundcover such as Mondo grass, liriope, Asian jasmine, English ivy or ferns.
In southeast Texas, rains in May generally provide enough water for turf grass. St. Augustine needs only ½ -1 inch per week to stay healthy. Don’t overwater. Overwatering can cause fungal infections. Check your irrigation controller and your sprinkler heads to make sure they are operating properly. Make sure you set it accurately to comply with the two-day-per-week Odd/Even Defined Irrigation Schedule.
By Bob Dailey
It’s been a long, wet, relatively cold winter in The Woodlands, with three snowfalls. Now, our yards are greening up, flowers are blooming, insects are buzzing and we are all attacked by the same debilitating disorder – spring fever.
As we walk out shoeless on our lawns, blades of St. Augustine tickling our toes, we might want to consider some chores which can extend the life of our lawn and add to its emerald presence.
By Bob Dailey
Every year about this time, residents began calling to report their grass is dying. Their beautiful, green, lush St. Augustine has turned a sickly brownish yellow. They worry that it’s not getting enough water, so they water profusely. They think that some disease or insects may be attacking their lawn, so they pile on pesticides, fungicides and fertilizers.
The fact is that St. Augustine grass is supposed to look brown and dead in the winter. However, St Augustine is a warm season grass. When the soil temperature drops below 55 degrees, the grass goes dormant.
Homeowners shouldn’t panic, nor should they use the myriad of panaceas offered on the market.
The Woodlands Joint Powers Agency, on behalf of the MUDs it serves, has released time-lapse videos that show how Hurricane Harvey flooding affected homes along Spring Creek and Panther Branch in south Montgomery County.
The two-dimensional video model of flooding along Spring Creek and Panther Branch for The Woodlands in Montgomery County starts at 7 a.m. on August 27, 2017 and ends at 10 a.m. on August 30, 2017. The model is broken into two parts to better demonstrate the areas inundated from Harvey.
The first video is a four-mile stretch of Spring Creek from Kuykendahl to West Rayford Road:
The second video shows a five-mile stretch starting at West Rayford Road to I-45 along with a three-mile section of Panther Branch starting at Sawdust Road to Spring Creek:
THE WOODLANDS, Texas, May 14, 2018 – Montgomery County Municipal Utility District No. 7
(MUD 7) recently paid off all its outstanding water, wastewater and drainage bonds.
A February 2018 early redemption payment saved MUD 7 approximately $25,000 in interest and fully
retired all outstanding debt.
Since its creation in 1971, MUD 7 has issued $26,165,000 in bonds to finance its water, wastewater
and drainage infrastructure. As debt has been paid off, MUD 7 has reduced its tax rate over 80 percent
to its current tax rate of $0.1645 per $100.
For more information on MUD 7, or any other MUD managed by The Woodlands Joint Powers Agency,
please call James M. Stinson, PE, General Manager at 855-h2o-save.
* = Unofficially elected
(i) = incumbent
There is a lot of water to be saved from implementing more efficient landscape irrigation practices. Landscape irrigation is estimated to be the single, largest component of municipal water use, and municipal water use is the second largest use of water in Texas (Cabrera et al., 2013). Studies show that homeowners have a tendency to overwater landscapes by as much as two to three times the amount needed (Haley et al, 2007).
2455 Lake Robbins Dr.
The Woodlands, TX
281-367-1271 ext. 3
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Early voting begins April 23; Election Day is May 5
THE WOODLANDS, Texas, March 28, 2018 – The 2018 election for the Municipal Utility Districts served by The Woodlands Joint Powers Agency includes 19 candidates in five MUDs.
Early voting is available 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday thru Friday, beginning April 23 and ending May 1. Election Day voting is Saturday, May 5, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. The location for early voting and election day voting is 2455 Lake Robbins Drive, The Woodlands, Texas.
In order to vote, you must live in the MUD and be registered to vote in the MUD.
Candidates for the upcoming elections are listed here in order of placement on the ballot:
(i) = incumbent
For more information on the election process, please contact Sherry Pizzitola, the election judge, atFor more information on the election process, please contact Sherry Pizzitola, the election judge, at855-h2o-save, extension 6902.