Northern Santa Barbara County surpasses water conservation goals - KSBY.com | San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Area News

Northern Santa Barbara County surpasses water conservation goals

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It's been a few months since Governor Jerry Brown called on Californians to cut water use by 25 percent.

According to the latest numbers, residents in Northern Santa Barbara County are doing an especially good job.

Six months ago, Santa Marian Joe Purdy wanted to save water, and do something different with his lawn.

"I started to put in rock," Purdy said. "And I didn't like the rock. And then I thought, 'well, I'll put in some of that pea gravel.' And I got a little sample of that and I didn't like the pea gravel."

Purdy was out shopping, when he stumbled upon the idea of getting synthetic turf.

According to the E.P.A, artificial grass can save up to 55 gallons of water per square foot each year, compared to natural grass.

"What I like about it more than anything, I don't have to water it," Purdy said. "I don't have to fertilize it. I don't have to trim it, edge it. I don't have to do anything."

Fake lawns are one of many ways Northern Santa Barbara County residents are saving water.

The latest stats show Santa Maria, Orcutt, Lompoc and Nipomo, which gets some of its water from Northern Santa Barbara County, all surpassing their state-mandated water reduction goals.

Lompoc saved 21 percent more than its target number.

As for Purdy, he says he saves about $35 a month on water.

There's just one small issue.

"And that's the leaves," Purdy said, "And so you can't really sweep it up like I was going to do with a vacuum, so I'm not sure what to do. I'm just going to let nature and the wind take care of it."

Most manufacturers say synthetic turf lawns will last about 10 to 15 years.

A local synthetic turf business called All-County Landscaping says its sales have jumped 30 percent since April, when Governor Brown called for water conservation.

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