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Water conservation

Water Conservation Program

May 1 – September 30

Beachville, Bright, Brownsville, Dereham Centre, Drumbo, Princeton, Embro, Hickson, Ingersoll, Innerkip, Lakeside, Mount Elgin, Norwich, Otterville, Springford, Sweaburg, Plattsville, Tavistock, Thamesford, Tillsonburg, and Woodstock.

Oxford County relies entirely on groundwater for its drinking water supply. Compared to other communities near rivers or lakes, groundwater supplies take much longer to replenish and are more vulnerable to overuse. Oxford County takes water conservation seriously.

Oxford County By-law No. 4193-2002 permits outdoor water use (by hose or attachment) every other day to ensure an adequate water supply for all residents. 

  • Even-numbered addresses water on even-numbered days
  • Odd-numbered addresses water on odd-numbered days
  • Residential: 6-9 a.m. and 6-9 p.m.
  • Commercial: 8-10 a.m. - 3-5 p.m.

Further restrictions may occur with excessive water use or when dry conditions cause water shortages.

Check the water usage in your community

Exemption Permits

You can apply for an outdoor water use exemption permit if you
need to use water outside the designated hours for:

  • Automatic sprinkler systems*

  • New sod, seed, trees or outside projects

  • Non-profit fundraising

  • Filling a swimming pool*

  • Special considerations

*A fee for non-metered customers may apply


To obtain a permit, contact:

Oxford County at 519-539-9800, toll-free at 1-866-537-7778 or by email at
Town of Tillsonburg at 519-842-9200
City of Woodstock at 519-539-2382

Lawn and garden tips

Strong roots grow strong shoots!

The best way to grow a luscious lawn is to encourage deep root growth. A single soaking once per week is enough. Overwatering your grass can cause it to be more susceptible to dry conditions and create the perfect environment for pests and diseases.

Not sure if you are over or under watering? Try leaving a small container on your lawn when watering to see how fast it fills—you only need 1 inch (2.5 cm).

Timing is everything

Watering early in the morning or in the evening is best. This ensures the water meant for your plants makes it to their roots instead of evaporating in the mid-day sun.

Rain is free

Natural rainwater is a wonderful source of water for your plants. Use a rain barrel to collect water for your grass and gardens. You can purchase a rain barrel from Oxford County by calling 519-539-9800 or toll-free at 1-866-537-7778.

Dormant does not mean dead

Is your lawn looking a little down? In hot dry weather, grass may go dormant (brown). Dormant lawns can survive up to six weeks without water. Dormant grass is still alive and will bounce back once it rains!