Ga. loosens watering restrictions

ATLANTA - Georgia is relaxing its tough watering restrictions.

The state's top environmental official said Tuesday that homeowners can now use drip irrigation and soaker hoses to help maintain their lawns and yards during the drought. Other restrictions - including a ban on most other types of outdoor watering - are still in place.

The change allows residents in the 55-county region to soak shrubs, trees and flower beds up to three days a week. Odd-numbered addresses may water on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays while even-numbered addresses may water on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays.

The restrictions were put in place in late 2007 when Georgia was locked in an epic drought.

Carol Couch, Georgia's top environmental official, warned she could repeal the changes if water use rises significantly or the drought worsens.

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