Published on: September 10, 2010

Xeriscaping (“z”era-scape-ing) is the practice of landscaping with drought tolerant plants to conserve water.

Given the many drought affected areas in the US as well as the many environmental concerned gardeners, xeriscaping is gaining popularity in today’s world of gardening.

When considering xeriscaping, you do not need to give up a beautiful landscape for a yard full of mulch, cacti and stone.  There are many plants that can be considered that will beautify your property without sucking up all the water a traditional landscape needs.  Consider the following when putting together your xeriscape landscape plan:

  • Choose and group plants according to water needs.  Do not mix water loving plants with drought tolerant plants.  Plant placement should be based on shade and sun exposure.  Do your research before you purchase and plant.  Reach out to your county extension service or consult a landscape expert for advice.
  • Make sure your irrigation system is sufficient.  Even thought you are decreasing the amount of water you will be using, you still need an efficient irrigation system that will supply the right amount of water to the proper places in your landscape.  Your investment in this area will actually save you money in the long run!
  • Test your soil type.  Find out what grass or ground cover works best for your soil and your particular region.
  • Mulch is very important in every landscape to conserve water and reduce weed growth.  Rock beds will absorb the sun’s heat and in turn assist in the evaporation of the much needed water.  Rocks have there place in landscapes and should be used wisely to avoid unnecessary water absorption.
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