Watering Schedule and Restrictions

Phase 1 Moderate
Current Water Shortage Phase


Potable, Surface, Well & Reclaimed Watering Restrictions

Lawn and Landscape Irrigation - show / hide
  • Watering times are midnight to 10 a.m., or 4 p.m. to midnight.
  • Hand watering or micro-irrigation of landscape other than actual lawn areas are allowed at any time.
  • Locations without a discernible address are areas such as rights-of-way and other common areas inside a subdivision.
  • Download watering schedule and restrictions
Address numbering
watering days
Even Address
Thursday and or Sunday
Odd Addresses
Wednesday and or Saturday
All Others*
Tuesday and or Friday

* All common areas and properties where no address can be determined.

New Lawns and Plants - show / hide
  • New lawns and plants have a 30-30 establishment period, which allows any day watering during the first 30 days.
  • The new plant/lawn users must still abide by the permitted hours except on the day of installation, during which residents may irrigate as needed within the 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. prohibited time frame.
  • During the second 30 days, watering is allowed three days per week.
  • Permitted watering is within the midnight to 10 a.m., or  4 p.m. to midnight time frame.
  • Even-numbered addresses may water on Tuesday, Thursday and Sunday.
  • Odd-numbered addresses may water Monday, Wednesday and Saturday.
  • Common areas and other "no-address" locations may water Tuesday, Friday and Sunday.
Fountains, Car Washing and Pressure Washing - show / hide

There are currently no restrictions on fountains, car washing and pressure washing. However, residents should be as efficient as possible, such as using a shutoff nozzle on their hose so water is not wasted.

Watering Violations - show / hide

The county's water use restrictions apply to all customers, residential and commercial, in unincorporated Polk. The restrictions also apply to all water sources, including wells and surface waters. Violating these restrictions may result in a fine of up to $1,000.

For questions and inquiries, or to report a water use violation, email wre@Polk-County.net. Please provide the following information:

  • Violation address
  • Date and time of the violation
  • The nature of the violation (i.e. watering on a non-watering day, watering during non-watering time, etc.)
  • Your name and contact information (optional)

Please Note: Public Records Awareness ~ Florida has a very broad Public Records Law. Most written communications to or from State and Local Officials regarding State or Local business are public records available to the public and media upon request. Your email communications may therefore be subject to public disclosure. 

Additional Water Restriction Information - show / hide
  • Southwest Florida Water Management District Water Restriction
  • Polk County Ordinance No. 04-07, adopted Feb. 18, 2004 - Year-round water conservation measures and water shortage ordinance.
  • Polk County Ordinance No. 09-050, Amended Ordinance No. 04-07, section 8 and section 9 on Aug. 1, 2009.
    • Section 8 was amended to provide for enforcement through the Polk County code enforcement special magistrate.
    • Section 9 was amended to provide for penalties and a method to address violations that are irreparable or irreversible in nature; providing for severability, providing for an effective date. 

The jurisdiction of Polk County includes lands located in both the Southwest Florida Water Management District ( SWFWMD) and the South Florida Water Management District. The majority of the population in Polk and the majority of public water supplies and domestic wells serving Polk's population are currently located within the SWFWMD water service area. To be consistent to one set of year-round conservation measures and when necessary, one consistent set of temporary water shortage restrictions on a county-wide basis, Polk County has adopted the related rules to follow from those of SWFWMD. It is the duty of county governmental and law enforcement officials for enforcement of these rules.

Please Note:

  • A Phase 1 water shortage for Polk County was declared by SWFWMD Governing Board on April 25, 2017.
  • This is a public alert that watering restrictions could be forthcoming.
  • The Phase 1 water shortage does not change watering schedules, but it does prohibit wasteful and unnecessary water use.
  • Florida's dry season runs October through May, however April is historically one of the driest months of the year.
  • "Wasteful and Unnecessary" water use is prohibited, including: allowing water to be dispersed without any practical purpose, using water in a grossly inefficient manner, using water for a purpose that can be readily accomplished by other means. 

The Polk County Board of County Commissioners is an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer.

Polk County Board of County Commissioners

330 W. Church St.
PO Box 9005
Bartow, FL 33831-9005
(863) 534-6000

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