Understanding the water restrictions in Tampa Bay is crucial for maintaining a healthy lawn and landscape.

Lawn Watering Restrictions in Tampa Bay, Florida

Understanding the water restrictions in Tampa Bay is crucial for maintaining a healthy lawn and landscape. As of July 1, 2024, the Southwest Florida Water Management District has implemented Phase I water shortage orders, impacting local governments and residents across the region.

These restrictions apply to all water supplied by water utilities, surface water, and reclaimed water.

Key Restrictions:

  • Irrigation Systems: Lawn and landscape irrigation are limited to once per day per week.
  • Hand Watering: Hand watering is allowed but should be done efficiently to conserve water.
  • Reclaimed Water: Even reclaimed water use is subject to specific regulations.
  • 30 Days: New lawns and plants can be watered daily for the first 30 days.

Issues Caused by Water Restrictions for Lawns

Water restrictions can lead to several challenges for homeowners, including:

  • Stress on Lawns: Limited watering can cause lawns to become brown and stressed, reducing their aesthetic appeal.
  • Increased Weeds: Drier conditions can lead to an increase in weeds, which compete with grass for nutrients.
  • Pest Infestations: Weaker lawns are more susceptible to pests, necessitating more intensive pest control measures.

Tips for Managing Lawns During Times of Drought

Maintaining a healthy lawn during water restrictions requires careful management. When the heat becomes too intense for your lawn, it will enter a dormancy phase, awaiting the return of cooler weather and moisture.
Typically, we can mitigate dry heat by watering, but recent water restrictions in Pinellas County and surrounding areas have made this challenging.
Here are some tips to help your lawn thrive during times of drought:


  • Height: During temperatures of 85 degrees and higher, mow at a higher height to encourage deeper root growth, which improves drought resistance.
  • Frequency: Mow less frequently to reduce stress on your lawn. Sharp blades make cleaner cuts, helping the grass heal faster and lose less water.


  • Efficient Irrigation Systems: Most areas permit watering one day a week. Ensure your irrigation system is functioning correctly, with all zones working and adequate pressure maintained. Ensure your irrigation system is efficient and targets the roots directly.
  • Timing: Water early in the morning or late in the evening to minimize evaporation. Increase your watering time to at least one hour per zone to ensure deep soil penetration.


  • Regular Weeding: Remove weeds promptly to prevent them from taking over your lawn.
  • Mulching: Use mulch to retain moisture and suppress weeds.


  • Shade Trees: Consider planting trees to provide shade, which acts as an insulator and helps retain soil moisture. Shaded areas tend to stay moist longer, giving grass more time to absorb water. Planting trees can reduce evaporation and keep the soil cooler.

Water Restrictions by Area


In Largo, water restrictions are strictly enforced to preserve the city’s water resources. Residents must adhere to the once-per-week irrigation schedule and are encouraged to use reclaimed water for non-potable purposes.

Year-Round Watering Restrictions for Largo

Reclaimed Water Restrictions in Largo

Pinellas Park

Pinellas Park follows the guidelines of the guidelines of the Florida Water Management District, emphasizing the use of efficient irrigation systems and hand watering techniques. Local governments also promote the use of surface water for landscape irrigation.

Year-Round Watering Restrictions for Pinellas Park


Dunedin residents must comply with water restrictions, focusing on sustainable practices such as using drought-resistant plants and efficient watering systems. Hand watering is recommended for maintaining gardens and flower beds.

Year-Round Watering Restrictions for Dunedin

Reclaimed Water Restrictions in Dunedin


Clearwater’s water utilities enforce restrictions to ensure sustainable water use. Residents are advised to use reclaimed water and observe the designated watering days to help manage the city’s water supply.

Safety Harbor

In Safety Harbor, restrictions apply to all forms of irrigation. The city promotes the use of reclaimed water and encourages residents to adopt water-efficient landscaping practices.

Year-Round Watering Restrictions for Safety Harbor

St. Petersburg

St. Petersburg has implemented strict water restrictions, with an emphasis on using efficient irrigation systems and reclaimed water. Residents are encouraged to follow the once-per-week watering schedule to help conserve water.

Sustainable Water Practices for St. Petersburg

Water Restrictions for St. Petersburg

Tarpon Springs

Tarpon Springs residents must adhere to water restrictions, focusing on sustainable landscaping practices and efficient water use. The city provides resources to help homeowners manage their lawns during drought conditions.

Year-Round Watering Restrictions for Tarpon Springs

Water Management for Tarpon Springs

By following these guidelines and understanding the specific restrictions in your area, you can help conserve water while maintaining a healthy lawn and landscape. For more information on water restrictions and lawn care tips, visit the Southwest Florida Water Management District website or contact your local water utility provider.

For the highest quality lawn care in Tampa Bay, contact McDonald Pest Control today to schedule your free consultation!