Waterwise gardens


How do I create hydrozones in my garden?

Group plants with similar watering needs on the one station. It’s an effective way to conserve water in the garden, and should be considered during the planning and replanting phases of creating your waterwise garden. For example, lawns have different water requirements to garden beds so they should be on separate watering stations.

How long do I need to water for?

Set run times for each station based on the type of sprinkler in each garden area. This table shows the suggested run times needed for each type to give your garden a standard drink equivalent to 10mm of rain. Any more than this is water wasted. By reducing the time slightly your garden can still look great. Switching off your sprinklers will save you lots of water.

Sprinkler type

Approximate watering rate (per hour)

Suggested runtime for 10mm (standard drink)

Recommended run time for reducing water use

Pop-up/fixed spray

35-45 mm

13-16 minutes

10 minutes


10-15 mm

40-60 minutes

30-40 minutes

Gear drive rotor

10-20 mm

30-40 minutes

25-30 minutes


15-20 mm

30-40 minutes

20-30 minutes


How can I test my sprinkler application rates?

Catch cups (graduated measuring containers) are a useful tool to test how efficiently a sprinkler system is operating and the sprinkler application rates. If there is a sizeable variation in the depth of water captured by the various catch cups then your sprinkler system is not applying the water evenly and should be checked for design or maintenance faults. For more information, visit watercorporation.com.au/watering

How do I use seasonal adjustment settings?

As the seasons change, so do the water needs of your lawn and garden. Set the ‘seasonal adjustment’ on your controller according to the table below to avoid over watering.  These adjustments are most suited to Perth and the South West. No matter what the season, your controller should always be turned off when it's raining.

Time of year

Seasonal adjustment








Manual operation of the controller as necessary


System turned off (winter sprinkler ban*)


Manual operation of controller as necessary







*A permanent winter sprinkler ban applies to scheme and bore water users in Perth, Mandurah and parts of the South West and Great Southern regions between 1 June and 31 August each year. For more information, visit the Water Corporation website.


When can I water?

To help reduce our water use, we all need to abide by the watering roster which was introduced statewide in 2007. Only water once on your rostered watering days before 9am or after 6pm, from September to May and switch off from June to August each year. To find your home’s watering days, visit https://www.watercorporation.com.au/save-water/watering-days.

Is it working properly?

It’s easy to ‘set and forget’ your irrigation system, but important to regularly check for leaks and broken sprinklers and make sure the controller is only watering once on your rostered watering day and its battery backup is charged.

What are exemptions?

When turf and garden areas are new, a smaller amount of water with a higher frequency of application is required during the establishment period. If you are establishing a lawn or garden customers may apply for an exemption for up to 42 days in order for it to become fully established.

There are certain requirements that apply in order to be eligible for an exemption. You can now apply online watercorporation.com.au/exemption or call 13 10 39 for more information.

Where can I get assistance? 

Maintain a beautiful garden with less water. Contact your Waterwise Garden Irrigator or Waterwise irrigation design shop for specialist advice on Waterwise products and services.