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A water-efficient landscape reduces outdoor water usage and saves you money on your water bill. Here are some ways to create and nurture a water-conserving landscape.
Don’t Waste Water
Watering your plants and trees in the cooler hours of the morning helps them retain water and lose less of it to evaporation. Avoid watering at the end of the day as wet leaves on plants and trees can lead to mildew and fungus. Soaker hoses use 50% less water than sprinklers. You can lay soaker hoses in your garden bed and leave them there all season.
Use Native Plants
Growing native plants lowers your water usage because they’ve had generations to acclimate to the local soil, climate, and rainfall. Learn which plants and trees are native to your area by visiting a local botanical garden or gardening association. You can also research online and consult local gardening business owners to find the best native plants for your landscaping needs.
Think About Plant Size
Before placing larger plants in your yard, find out how tall and wide the shrubs and trees grow, their water requirements, and sunlight needs. Don’t overcrowd your plantings, as this will require additional water. Instead, remember that sparse initial plantings will fill in as they grow and mature.
Placing mulch around plants and trees helps reduce water loss while combating weeds that can steal water from your greenery. Buy bark mulch from the store or use organic mulches such as pine needles, grass clippings, or ground-up leaves, which help add nutrients to the soil in your garden.
Use Porous Path Material
When you make your garden paths out of porous materials such as pebbles, gravel, spaced bricks, or pavers without mortar, water can reach the ground and nourish plant roots. Using nonporous materials such as concrete creates water runoff that can cause erosion. To prevent weed growth through porous path materials, lay down a layer of landscaping paper before adding the pebbles or gravel.