Although two non-potable wells in northeast Turlock are back online, the City is continuing to experience difficulties getting much needed water to landscapes and trees.
“Having these critical wells out of services has stressed our trees and permanent landscape in this part of the City,” said Director of Parks, Recreation and Public Facilities Allison Van Guilder. “The City and our taxpayers have made a huge investment in these landscaped areas and, with the non-potable wells down, these trees and plantings have been stressed to the brink. We are doing our best to save them and get these trees and shrubs stable, but with the ongoing difficulties with these wells, we are having to water outside of the prescribed times.”
Long before the drought, the City of Turlock installed several non-potable — or non-drinking — wells throughout the city exclusively to be used to water landscapes. While non-potable water is not considered safe to drink, it can still be used for watering landscapes.
Three weeks ago, two key wells in the northeast area of Turlock failed. In one case, the well casing collapsed and the pump failed in the other.
The failures came on the heels of a week with 100-plus degree weather.
“We have a challenge each summer to keep the landscape areas, parks and other green space maintained,” said Van Guilder. “This summer, the drought has exacerbated the normal issues.”
According to a press release, the City of Turlock has received several phone calls from concerned residents regarding the stressed landscapes and trees in areas, as well as incidents where the City has been running sprinklers outside of the prescribed watering schedule.
“We appreciate when residents notify us of broken or malfunctioning sprinklers, but like your home sprinkler systems, we have to run the hundreds of sprinkler system stations and valves to check for leaks and repair the broken components,” said Van Guilder. “These tests and repairs usually occur during regular business hours and outside the prescribed watering times.”
The City of Turlock Parks, Recreation and Public Facilities staff maintains more than 180 acres of parks and more than 80 acres in the landscape. In total, these areas have tens of thousands of sprinkler heads and drip emitters.
The City’s current watering schedule allows for even numbered residences to water on Tuesdays and Saturdays and odd numbered residences to water on Wednesday and Sunday. Watering is allowed between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m. on weekdays above and between midnight and noon on weekends.
To report water waste, you can contact Municipal Services at 209-668-5590 or fill out the online report form on the City of Turlock’s website.