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Water Management:How Much Water Landscapes Really Need, 1 CEU APLD, 1 CEU LA CES, 1 CEU LEED

Presented by: Dennis Pittenger, University of California Cooperative Extension
Friday, March 30th - 9:00 - 10:00 AM

Course Description:

Landscape architects, irrigation specifiers, and landscape management professionals are faced with calculating water budgets and irrigation schedules for landscape projects using climate-based reference evapotranspiration (ETo) data. Many smart irrigation controllers also incorporate algorithms based on this model to derive their irrigation schedules. The calculations that produce these budgets and schedules require multiplying ETo estimates by an adjustment factor, known as a crop coefficient (Kc) or a plant factor (PF), that accounts for plants' particular water needs. Few information sources offer quantitative estimates of landscape plants' water requirements. Most of those that do, including the widely-referenced publication, "Water Use Classification of Landscape Species" (WUCOLS), are not based on scientific data. Using the values available from these sources gives users a false sense of precision in the water budgets and schedules they calculate or that their smart controller develops. Fortunately, there have been some scientific field studies completed over the past several years that have been used to provide new accurate, dependable water need estimates of groups of landscape plants and effective means for reconciling the reliability of WUCOLS and other information sources. This seminar will present the newer field research data on landscape plant water needs and show how it can be readily used to calculate accurate and meaningful irrigation budgets or schedules.


Dennis is a sought-after speaker and an experienced expert in helping the green industry solve problems in landscape water management, palm management, and urban woody plant care. He has conducted many field research studies related to these issues, and his achievements are recognized nationally. Dennis has authored numerous technical research articles and educational publications. He is the technical editor and co-author of the award-winning California Master Gardener Handbook and leads U.C. Cooperative Extension's Web-based Center for Landscape and Urban Horticulture. He works closely with industry groups and his U.C. colleagues in Southern California to carry out research studies and educational events for landscape-related professionals.

Dennis Pittenger, Professor, University of California Cooperative Extension

Schedule subject to change

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