Residents get educated at Sandy’s water conservation fairOct 01, 2022 08:25PM ● By Peri Kinder
By Peri Kinder | [email protected]
Experts agree that water conversation will be an ongoing discussion as the state continues to struggle with drought. Sandy City officials shared conservation ideas and tools at the Sego Lily Garden Fall Fair in September.
In conjunction with the Trans-Jordan Landfill, Sandy City Fire, Utah State University, Tracy Aviary, and Sprinkler World, the fall fair at Sego Lily Gardens (1472 Sego Lily Drive) provided education about how to keep the city’s water system clean and plentiful.
“This fair is a way to educate the public,” said Nikki Wyman with Sandy City Public Utilities. “We’re angling more toward water conservation because we’re in a drought. We suggest people water less often and change to a drip irrigation system.”
Dawn Barbee, Sandy City’s storm water quality coordinator, is asking pet owners to pick up dog waste in yards, parks and watershed areas, where dogs aren’t allowed. Watershed areas in Sandy include Bell Canyon and Little Cottonwood Canyon and residents can be fined for bringing dogs to these protected areas, since it directly impacts drinking water.
Barbee also reminded fair visitors that stormwater pollution can be avoided by using garden chemicals sparingly, never washing cement waste into storm drains, keeping gutters clean and not washing waste into the street.
“Keeping water clean is so necessary,” Barbee said. “Stormwater isn’t treated. Everything just washes into the Jordan River, and you wouldn’t want to drink that water.”
Jill Fletcher, Trans-Jordan Landfill’s public and community education coordinator, hosted a presentation that listed items that don’t go into recycle bins including glass, styrofoam, food waste and wrappers, and napkins.
“The biggest mistake people make is putting all their recycling into a plastic bag and tying it shut,” she said. “Those items won’t be recycled. It’s better to drop them into the bin loosely.”
Sego Lily Gardens promotes waterwise plants and residents can visit the gardens from April through September to get ideas about how to reduce their water footprint. This year, the fair offered a plant swap to encourage residents to use drought-tolerant foliage.
Danielle DesRosier, a gardener at Sego Lily Gardens, said it’s easy to get discouraged when saving water can feel overwhelming, but even a little bit of conservation can make a difference.
“I’ve seen a lot of people with dirt yards where they’ve dug up their lawn,” DesRosier said. “If just 5% of the people just conserved 5% of water they normally used, we’d save a gazillion gallons.”
Visitors at the fair were encouraged to participate in the Utah Pollinator Pursuit, an initiative to protect bees and monarch butterflies. Residents are asked to record encounters with pollinators by uploading photos and location information on the site. For more information, visit utah.gov/monarchconservationinutah/get-involved.