Did you know that the average price for water in the Portland Metro area has increased from 40-120% in the past 5 years? The reason for the differing rates varies but the point we want to make is to prepare for annual increases greater than the overall inflation, as that has been the pattern for the past 7 years and will likely continue.
As water rates rise, conservation projects make more and more financial sense. Whether you want to "save the world" by conserving water, or not, all will agree that high ROI conservation projects are a "no brainer".
WEATHER BASED IRRIGATION
Technology is rapidly changing and the impact on your and our business is benefiting from each advancement. Irrigation control is one of the many parts of landscape management that is improving with technology advances. Historically, each irrigation system is controlled with a site controller. In the early days, these were simple mechanical time clocks. As electronic advances unfolded, they became more sophisticated, improving irrigation control and water conservation. The challenge has always been to "do what you tell them" and if you guess wrong (because you believed the weather forecast) you over or under irrigated.
For over 20 years, remote irrigation control has been in place but it has been complicated and expensive. For the past 6-7 years, the technology has become increasingly cheaper and more effective. We began offering remote irrigation control in 2008 and that technology has continued to develop and improve. We have also been monitoring other manufacturers products and operate several others that we have inherited when taking over the maintenance of new properties.
Each of these new water management products is based on monitoring and adjusting daily irrigation based on the ever changing weather and associated irrigation needs. The problem has been with getting the connection between the remote on-site irrigation controller to the central control computer in the irrigation managers office and ideally on their phone. New advances have finally been made to make this easy and affordable. It is like going from a pager to a smart phone. We can now control your irrigation from anywhere and adjust as needed regardless of the time and location.
As mentioned last fall, several people from our staff attended the Irrigation Association annual tradeshow and conference where they evaluated the newest water management products. We have continued to research and train our staff on these new products and will begin to propose the appropriate product for each property we maintain starting this spring.