Homeowners Bryan and Denee Felber have earned the title “Best in District” in the Otay Water District’s 2022 WaterSmart Landscape Contest. Courtesy photo.

A Chula Vista couple has been doing its parts to help save water and have been recognized b their efforts.

Homeowners Bryan and Denee Felber have earned the title “Best in District” in the Otay Water District’s 2022 WaterSmart Landscape Contest.

Annually, San Diego County water agencies host the contest to award residents for showcasing well-thought-out designs, plant selection and maintenance, and methods for efficient irrigation.

The 2,143 square feet of turf the Felbers converted to a drought-tolerant garden in 2015, continues to beautify the neighborhood and save water for the Chula Vista residents.

They reside in the District’s division four, represented by Board Director and Treasurer Jose Lopez.

“Otay is proud to see that our contest winners have taken the necessary steps to limit their outdoor water use and make their home drought resilient,” Lopez said. “Now that our region is facing dry conditions, we encourage customers to do the same by taking full advantage of the programs and rebates available, which will make a significant difference in preserving our local water supply.”

In 2015, the Felbers participated in the San Diego County Water Authority’s WaterSmart Landscape Makeover Program to learn how to create and maintain a low-water-use yard. That same year, they were approved for the Turf Replacement Program presented by the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California and San Diego County Water Authority. They received a rebate to replace 5,007 square feet of their front and back yards. Eventually, the couple replaced an additional 202 square feet of their side yard.

Spray nozzles are no longer a feature in their front yard. Instead, a drip system irrigates the plants on a programmed schedule of about three days a week. When rain is expected, the system is turned off or delayed for a few days. A dry riverbed that runs across the landscape captures and directs rainfall, minimizing water runoff. Their completed landscape has allowed the Felbers to reduce their overall water use by approximately 33% compared to the years before upgrading.

When asked if they recommend others to consider upgrading their yards, Bryan responded “Absolutely!”

“It’s easier and requires much less time to maintain and it saves money,” Bryan said. “Designed well, it can be beautiful with far less water, reducing water demand, and preserving its supply.”

The District will recognize the Felbers at its August Board meeting with a certificate of recognition, a gift certificate to a local nursery of their choice, a yard sign, and other promotional items.

For more information about the winners, visit otaywater.gov/landscape-contest-winners-2022<https://otaywater.gov/landscape-contest-winners-2022/>. To learn about water conservation resources, including turf replacement, visit otaywater.gov/conservation<https://otaywater.gov/conservation/>.

The Otay Water District is a public agency providing water, recycled water, and sewer service to more than 226,000 customers within approximately 125 square miles of southeastern San Diego County, including the communities of eastern Chula Vista, Bonita, Jamul, Spring Valley, Rancho San Diego, unincorporated areas of El Cajon and La Mesa, and eastern Otay Mesa along the international border with Mexico. For more information on the Otay Water District, visit otaywater.gov<https://www.otaywater.gov>



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Ellen Bullock