Skip to main content

The words used in this section have the meanings set forth below:

“Antidrain valve” or “check valve” means a valve located under/in a sprinkler head to hold water in the system to eliminate drainage from the lower elevation sprinkler heads.

“Application rate” means the depth of water applied to a given area, usually measured in inches per hour. Also known as precipitation rate (sprinklers) or emission rate (drippers/microsprayers) in gallons per hour.

“Applied water” means the portion of water supplied by the irrigation system to the landscape.

“Automatic controller” means an electronic or solid-state timer capable of operating valve stations to set the days, time and length of time of a water application.

“Backflow prevention device” means a safety device used to prevent pollution or contamination of the water supply due to the reverse flow of water from the irrigation system.

“Beneficial use” means water used for landscape evapotranspiration.

“Billing units” means units of water (100 cubic feet = 1 billing unit = 748 gallons = 1 CCF) for billing purposes. To convert gallons per year to 100 cubic feet per year, divide gallons per year by 748. (748 gallons = 100 cubic feet.)

“Conversion factor (0.62)” means a number that converts the maximum applied water allowance from acre-inches per acre to gallons per square foot. The conversion factor is calculated as follows:

(325,851 gallons/43,560 square feet)/12 inches = (0.62)

325,851 gallons = one acre-foot

43,560 square feet = one acre

12 inches = one foot

“Desert landscape” means a desert landscape using native plants spaced to look like a native habitat.

“Distribution uniformity” means a measure of how evenly sprinklers apply water. The low-quarter measurement method (DULQ) utilized in the irrigation audit procedure is utilized for the purposes of these criteria. These criteria assume an attainable performance level of 75 percent DULQ for spray heads, 80 percent DULQ for rotor heads and 85 percent DULQ for recreational turf grass rotor heads.

“District” means Coachella Valley Water District.

“Drip irrigation” means a method of irrigation where the water is applied slowly at the base of plants without watering the open space between plants.

“Ecological restoration project” means a project where the site is intentionally altered to establish a defined, indigenous, historic ecosystem.

“Effective precipitation” or “usable rainfall” means the portion of total natural precipitation that is used by the plants, usually assumed to be three inches annually. Precipitation or rainfall is not considered a reliable source of water in the desert.

“Electronic controllers” means time clocks that have the capabilities of multiprogramming, water budgeting and multiple start times.

“Emission uniformity” means a measure of how evenly drip and microspray emitters apply water. The low-quarter measurement method (EULQ) utilized in the landscape irrigation evaluation procedure is utilized for the purposes of these criteria. These criteria assume 90 percent EULQ for drippers, microsprays and pressure compensating bubblers.

“Emitter” means drip irrigation fittings that deliver water slowly from the watering system to the soil.

“Established landscape” means the point at which new plants in the landscape have developed roots into the soil adjacent to the root ball.

“Establishment period” means the first year after installing the plant in the landscape.

“Estimated annual total applied water use (total of all hydrozones)” means the annual total amount of water estimated to be needed by all hydrozones to keep the plants and water features in the landscaped area healthy and visually pleasing. It is based upon such factors as the local evapotranspiration rate, the size of the landscaped area, the size and type of water feature, the types of plants, and the efficiency of the irrigation system. The estimated annual total applied water use shall not exceed the maximum applied water allowance (MAWA).

“Estimated total water use (by hydrozone)” means the portion of the estimated annual total applied water use that is derived from applied water to a specified hydrozone.

“ET adjustment factor” means a factor of 0.45 that, when applied to reference evapotranspiration, adjusts for plant factors and irrigation efficiency, two major influences upon the amount of water that needs to be applied to the landscape.

“Evapotranspiration” or “ET” means the quantity of water evaporated from adjacent soil surfaces and transpired by plants expressed in inches during a specific time.

“Finished grade” means grade height after surface mulch covering has been installed.

“Flow rate” means the rate at which water flows through pipes, valves and meters (gallons per minute or cubic feet per second).

“Hardscape” means concrete or asphalt areas including streets, parking lots, sidewalks, driveways, patios and decks.

“Head-to-head coverage” means 100 percent sprinkler coverage of the area to be irrigated, with maximum practical uniformity.

“High flow check valve” means a valve located under/in a sprinkler head to stop the flow of water if the spray head is broken or missing.

“Hydrozone” means a portion of the landscaped area having plants with similar water needs that are served by a valve or set of valves with the same schedule. A hydrozone may be irrigated or nonirrigated. For example, a naturalized area planted with native vegetation that will not need supplemental irrigation (once established) is a nonirrigated hydrozone.

“Infiltration rate” means the rate of water entry into the soil expressed as a depth of water per unit of time (inches per hour).

“Irrigation efficiency” means the measurement of the amount of water beneficially used divided by the amount of water applied. Irrigation efficiency is derived from measurements and estimates of irrigation system characteristics and management practices. The minimum irrigation efficiency for purposes of these regulations is 0.75 or 75 percent and 0.90 or 90 percent for drip systems.

“Landscape irrigation audit” means a process to perform site inspections, evaluate irrigation systems and develop efficient irrigation schedules.

“Landscaped area” means the entire parcel less the building footprint, driveways, nonirrigated portions of the parking lots, hardscapes (such as decks and patios), and other nonporous areas. Water features are included in the calculation of a site’s landscaped area.

“Lateral line” means the water delivery pipeline that supplies water to the emitters’ sprinklers from a valve.

“Local agency” means a city, county, or water purveyor responsible for adopting and implementing the ordinance codified in this chapter. The local agency is also responsible for enforcement of this chapter, including, but not limited to, approval of a design review, permit, plan check, or inspection of a project.

“Main line” means the pressurized pipeline that delivers water from the water source to a valve or outlet.

“Maximum applied water allowance (MAWA)” means, for design purposes, the upper limit of annual applied water for the established landscape area as specified in Cal. Code Regs. tit. 23, div. 2, ch. 7, § 492.4. It is based upon the area’s reference evapotranspiration, ET adjustment factor, and the size of the landscaped area. The estimated applied water use shall not exceed the maximum applied water allowance (MAWA).

Microirrigation. See “drip irrigation.”

“Mulch” means any organic materials such as leaves, bark, straw or inorganic material such as pebbles, stones, gravel, decorative sand or decomposed granite left loose and applied to the soil surface to reduce evaporation.

“Native plants” are low water using plants that are: (1) indigenous to the Coachella Valley and lower Colorado Desert region of California and Arizona, (2) native to the southwestern United States and northern Mexico or (3) native to other desert regions of the world, but adapted to the Coachella Valley.

“Natural grade” means grade height of native soil before application of surface mulch.

“Operating pressure” means the pressure at which an irrigation system’s sprinklers, bubblers, drippers or microsprays are designed to operate, usually indicated at the base of an irrigation head.

“Overhead sprinkler irrigation stations” means sprinklers with high flow rates (spray heads, impulse sprinklers, gear rotors, etc.) that are utilized to apply water through the air to large irrigated areas.

“Overspray” means the water which is delivered beyond the landscaped area onto pavements, walks, structures or other nonlandscape areas. Also known as hardscape applications.

“Plant factor” means a factor that, when multiplied by reference evapotranspiration, estimates the amount of water used by plants. For purposes of these criteria, the average plant factor of very low water using plants ranges from 0.01 to 0.10, for low water using plants the range is 0.10 to 0.30, for moderate water using plants the range is 0.40 to 0.60, and for high water using plants, the range is 0.70 to 0.90. Reference: Water Use Classifications of Landscape Species IV (WUCOLS IV).

“Pressure compensating (PC) bubbler” means an emission device that allows the output of water to remain constant regardless of input pressure. Typical flow rates for this type of bubbler range between 0.25 gpm to 2.0 gpm.

“Pressure compensating screens/devices” means small screens/devices inserted in place of standard screens/devices that are used in sprinkler heads for radius and high pressure control.

“Qualified professional” means a person who has been certified by their professional organization or a person who has demonstrated knowledge and is locally recognized as qualified among landscape architects due to longtime experience.

“Rain-sensing device” means a system which automatically shuts off the irrigation system when it rains.

“Record drawing” or “as-builts” means a set of reproducible drawings which show significant changes in the work made during construction and which are usually based on drawings marked up in the field and other data furnished by the contractor.

“Recreational area” means areas of active play or recreation such as golf courses, sports fields, school yards, picnic grounds, or other areas with intense foot or vehicular traffic.

“Recreational turf grass” means high traffic turf grass that serves as a playing surface for sports and recreational activities. Athletic fields, golf courses, parks and school playgrounds are all examples of areas having recreational turf grass.

“Recreational turf grass ET adjustment factor” means a factor of 0.82 that, when applied to reference evapotranspiration, adjusts for the additional stress of high traffic on recreational turf grass and the higher irrigation efficiencies of long-range rotary sprinklers. These are the two major influences upon the amount of water that needs to be applied to a recreational landscape. A mixed cool/warm season turf grass with a seasonal average of 0.7 is the basis of the plant factor portion of this calculation. The irrigation efficiency of long-range sprinklers for purposes of the ET adjustment factor is 0.85. Therefore, the ET adjustment factor is 0.82 = 0.7/0.85.

“Recycled water/reclaimed water” means treated or recycled wastewater of a quality suitable for nonpotable uses such as landscape irrigation. Recycled water is not for human consumption.

“Reference evapotranspiration” or “ETo” means a standard measurement of the environmental parameters which affect the water use of plants, using cool season grass as a reference. ETo is expressed in inches per day, month or year and is an estimate of the evapotranspiration of a large field of cool season grass that is well-watered. Reference evapotranspiration is used as a basis of determining the maximum applied water allowances so that regional differences in climate can be accommodated. For purposes of these criteria, CVWD Drawing No. 29523 will be used for ETo zones.

Drawing 29523

“Rehabilitated landscape” means any relandscaping project in which the choice of new plant material and/or new irrigation system components is such that the calculation of the site’s estimated water use will be significantly changed. The new estimated water use calculation must not exceed the maximum applied water allowance (MAWA) calculated for the site using a 0.45 ET adjustment factor.

“Riparian plants” are high water using and water-loving plants that are found growing naturally along flowing rivers and lake shores. They may also be native to wet swampy areas with high water tables or poor drainage.

“Runoff” means irrigation water which is not absorbed by the soil or landscape to which it is applied and which flows from the planted area.

“Service line” means the pressurized pipeline that delivers water from the water source to the water meter.

“Smart controller” means weather-based or soil moisture-based irrigation controls that monitor and use information about environmental conditions for a specific location and landscape (such as soil moisture, rain, wind, the plants’ evaporation and transpiration rates and, in some cases, plant type and more) to automatically control when to water and when not to, providing exactly the right amount of water to maintain lush, healthy growing conditions.

“Soil moisture-sensing device” means a device that measures the amount of water in the soil.

“Soil texture” means the classification of soil based on the percentage of sand, silt and clay in the soil.

“Sprinkler head” means a device which sprays water through a nozzle.

“Static water pressure” means the pipeline or municipal water supply pressure when water is not flowing.

“Station” means an area served by one valve or by a set of valves that operate simultaneously.

“Turf” means a surface of earth containing mowed grass with roots.

“Valve” means a device used to control the flow of water in the irrigation system.

“Water feature” means any water applied to the landscape for nonirrigation, decorative purposes. Fountains, streams, ponds and lakes are considered water features. Water features use more water than efficiently irrigated turf grass and are assigned a plant factor of 1.1 for a stationary body of water and 1.2 for a moving body of water.

“Water system” means the network of piping, valves and irrigation heads.

“WUCOLS IV” means Water Use Classifications of Landscape Species IV. (Ord. 1302.3 Att. A, 2017; Ord. 1302, 2003)

Loading…