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What is Xeriscape?
Xeriscaping is the process of creating a landscape or garden that is designed to use the least amount of water possible and save on maintenance labor. This landscaping method is on the forefront of environmentally sustainable landscape design. It is a great landscaping option that can help reduce the amount of water wasted, aid in energy conservation and reduce the amount of fertilizers and pesticides used.
7 Fundamental Principles of Xeriscape
- Water Conservation-Reduce amount of applied water and amount that evaporates
- Soil Improvement- Helps drain landscape quickly and stores water at the same time
- Create Limited Turf Areas- Reduces size of turf, less turf equals less water
- Use Appropriate Plants- Select plants that are drought tolerant for your region
- Mulch- Use locally derived mulch to help retain moisture in landscape
- Irrigate- Use proper drip systems along with irrigation clocks to avoid over-watering
- Maintain Your Landscape- Low maintenance makes homeowners happy
Benefits of Xeriscape
Xeriscaping involves less time spent watering. mowing and weeding your lawn thanks to some of it's core concepts, including design, mulching, and efficient irrigation. This efficient irrigation also means you'll use less water, which can save you not just valuable time, but money on your water bill as well. Some supporters of Xeriscaping say it can reduce your water use by 50%-75%. This type of landscaping makes the most of the rainfall in your region, meaning you shouldn't have to turn on the hose or sprinkler as often.
While certain plants need substantial water to survive, the ones used for Xeriscaping will be more likely to survive periods of drought or when water is in short supply.
Disadvantages to Xeriscape
One of the biggest disadvantages to Xeriscaping is the initial installation and design. It is a little bit more to get it installed but you will save so much more in the long run since you won't need to replace your plants every season.
- Choose drought tolerant plants and shrubs
- Determine annual precipitation range for area
- Water during the coolest time of the day
- Minimize the number of young plants that require more water
- Use windbreaks to avoid the wind drying plants out
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