Contact: Joe Vargo, Perris Public Information Officer
Phone: 951-956-2120

City Slashes Water Consumption

Toro equipment used In Perris demonstration garden cuts water use
and serves as model for future irrigation design

Mayor Pro-Tem Mark Yarbrough, Councilman Al Landers and Perris Valley Chamber of Commerce CEO Shelly Yarbrough salute during the Pledge of Allegiance at the ground-breaking ceremony for the Perris Gateway Project
A new WaterSmart sprinkler in action at City Hall.

The savings have already begun.

Droplet by precious droplet, Perris has cut the water it uses for its City Hall and become a model for how other cities, school districts, residents and businesses keep their landscape green.

A month after partnering with The Toro Company to install its WaterSmart demonstration garden, the City of Perris has dropped water consumption by more than 52,000 gallons.
That’s a savings of nearly 632,000 gallons a year—enough water to serve four families for a year.

Why is this so important?

With the ongoing drought and reduced water supplies from the Bay Delta, Southern Californians are scrambling to save water or see their water bills skyrocket. The Perris demonstration garden uses Toro’s Precision Spray nozzles and Intelli-Sense controllers that can cut water use by a third  without having to change landscaping.

“With a little ingenuity and Toro’s water-saving nozzles and controllers, we were able to preserve the look of our historic City Hall without the expense of tearing up the garden and changing the plants,” said Mayor Daryl Busch. 

Unveiled July 30, 2009, as part of SMART Irrigation month, Perris’ WaterSmart garden in front of City Hall features state-of-the-art equipment from The Toro Company. Toro’s Intelli-Sense irrigation controller and it’s Precision Series Spray Nozzles that are expected to cut water use in the one-acre garden.

The system’s Intelli-Sense is a weather-based controller that automatically changes its irrigation schedule in response to changes in the weather, ensuring that individual landscape zones receive precisely the correct amount of water. By monitoring each zone, the controller adjusts to allow the soil to partially dry out to encourage deeper healthier root growth.

The Precision Series spray nozzles incorporate H2O Chip Technology which enables a stream of water to oscillate within a specially designed chamber at 200 cycles a second. Detectable only under strobe light, the spray pattern is far more consistent than conventional nozzles, resulting in up to a third less water use than traditional sprinkler nozzles.

And if a nozzle is broken, no geysers!

The sprinkler head will shut off if its nozzle is damaged, saving 30 to 40 gallons a minute that can occur when damaged conventional sprinkler heads go unrepaired.

City Councilman Al Landers said he believes other communities would do well to emulate Perris’ commitment to the environment through the use of creative and innovative programs. Last year the City received the prestigious Helen Putnam Award from the League of California Cities for its Solar Shine project that covered the City Hall’s parking structures with photovoltaic cells. The City also is in the midst of a major upgrade to its historic D Street business district.

“I like to think of Perris as the little city that could,” Landers said. “We will not sacrifice any of our unique history but we will not hesitate to employ innovative approaches to solve our problems while contributing to a more environmentally friendly community. It’s exciting to be part of a City so committed to tackling the big problems. Other cities talk about doing things; we do them.”

Mayor Pro-Tem Mark Yarbrough said he would like to see the Toro project expanded to Perris schools, which could save millions of gallons of water. He hailed the partnership with Toro as a public-private agreement “that is getting the job done.”

“This is another example of how our staff is thinking outside the box to get things done,” Yarbrough said.
Toro Marketing Director Christine Canepa also heaped praise on Perris during a City Council meeting this week.

“We chose Perris (for the demonstration garden) because of your leadership and vision,” she said. “For us you serve as a model.”

Located in the heart of Riverside County, Perris is the award-winning city that is a leader in powering its public buildings with solar energy and fighting the foreclosure crisis by painting lawns to improve curb appeal of foreclosed homes. 

The last 12 months have been busy for the mid-sized city.

In addition to the demonstration garden and Solar Shine project, it restored its historic rail Depot, instituted a business façade program and implemented an internationally recognized home and lawn rejuvenation effort to improve curb appeal of homes affected by the foreclosure crisis.