Sustainable Landscaping to Use Less Water
Did you know that the average lawn requires as much as two inches of water to thrive? In drought conditions that could mean risking huge fines just to maintain a part of your landscaping that is not really vital to the appearance or appeal of your home. In communities around the country, people are skipping the grass and moving on to better, more sustainable landscaping solutions that not only help the environment but can make your outdoor living area easier to maintain and more enjoyable in the long run.
What are Low Water Gardens?
Choosing what to plant is only one of the steps in planning a good garden. You will need to consider everything from how much daily sunlight the area gets to the average conditiions that your new plants will face. Opting for plants that are native to the area helps in a major way not only because they are used to the current conditions but because you are not bringing in something that could change the eco system of your yard and the surrounding area.
Even native plants will need water from time to time which is where the concept of low water gardens comes in to play. The major feature here is hidden from view in the form of pipes, hoses or tubes that are hidden along the root line of your plants to give water directly to the root systems. Because the water does not need to soak through the soil, much less can be used.
Consider Rock Gardens
Gravel comes in a variety of sizes and even in different colors. Some plants will thrive directly on gravel which is perfect for keeping weeds down and allowing the plants to have access to ground moisture. Gravel is also self-draining and easy to move into graceful shapes.
Larger rocks can also be used to form small walls and structures perfect for moss, climbing plants and other shallow rooted specimens.
Add Mulch Where Possible
Mulch also comes in a variety of colors from vibrant red to more neutral shades of brown and black. Mulch is usedd for a variety of reasons including weed control, water retention and protection for new root systems. Remember though, mulch can retain heat so it may be necessary to move it from the base of new plants and young trees.
Know Your Area
To be sustainable, landscaping must be right for the current conditions but adaptable to any changes that happen in the future. Features that hold and save the precious little rainfall that comes your way will be more important than large swathes of green. Plants that can handle dry conditions will help improve and retain the soil, thriving where the old-fashioned lawn cannot.
For Landscaping ideas, contact us today!