greenscapesIn recognition of the fact that summertime water use doubles, just when it is needed most to support fish in streams, and to ensure there is enough water for public safety and a healthy domestic water supply, the NSRWA created a water conservation and protection program. The goal of the Greenscapes program, begun in 2003, is to educate people on ways to care for their yards that require less watering and dependence on commercial pesticides, herbicides and fertilizers.

Top 10 Water Conservation Tips

1.  Know how much water you use and use your water bill to track conservation goals. Click here for our water calculator.
2. Don’t water plants, lawns and gardens in the middle of the day. The water will evaporate quicker and you will need to water more frequently. Click here for lawn watering guidelines.
3. Mow smarter. Click here to see our Best Mowing Practices.
4. Test your toilet for leaks with dye or other leak detection kits.
5. Retrofit faucets with low-flow aerators – 0.5-1.0 gpm for bathrooms and 1.5gpm for kitchen sinks.
6. Upgrade toilet, use a brick or displacement bag to reduce flush rate to 1.2 or 1 gallon per flush.
7. Turn water off while brushing teeth and washing dishes.
8. Collect unused water from pet bowls, dehumidifers, and boiled vegetables to water plants.
9. Capture rain water for outdoor watering.
10. Plant drought tolerant native plants that require minimal (if any) watering.

Downloadable materials

  1. Download our 16-page Greenscapes Guide – Creating a beautiful healthy yard the natural way.
  2. Download instructions on how to make Compost Tea.
  3. Brown is the New Green Yard Sign – Download your free printable file to use as a yard sign, poster or flier. Do your part to save water and let your brown lawn be part of the new “green.” Join the movement and set an example of water conservation for your friends and neighbors.
  4. Be a Greenscaper – Take the Greenscapes pledge to care for your yard using water-conserving techniques that will provide you a beautiful, healthy yard.
  5. Creating a Healthy Yard  – Learn why going organic is the healthy way to go, and how to go about transitioning from chemicals to organic!
  6. Recycling Water – Too precious to waste, we need to put water back in to the soil, rather than letting it run off the more we create impervious surfaces.
  7. Can You Reduce Your Daily Water use by 5 Gallons? – MA Dept. of Environmental Protection has set a generous goal of no more than 65 gallons of water use per person per day. If we can save even more, so much the better.
  8. Stormwater—Why Should You Care? – Stormwater is the biggest threat to clean water today. Stormwater, which used to soak in the ground now is carried directly to reservoirs, rivers. lakes and the ocean. Find out more about this huge issue.
  9. Top 10 Ways to Make Your Irrigation System More Efficient  – You could save potentially hundreds of dollars and thousands of gallons of water by making sure your irrigation system is working efficiently and not running when it’s raining, as so many do!

The WaterSmart Program is a partnership with the NSRWA and 11 towns on the South Shore; Aquarion (Hingham and Hull), Duxbury, Hanover, Hingham, Kingston, Marshfield, Norwell, Pembroke, Rockland, Scituate and Weymouth, which provides education to school children and adults on stormwater and water conservation in their homes, businesses and towns.

For more information about WaterSmart, contact the program manager, Lori Wolfe, at or (781) 659-8168.