Water is a precious commodity. So is time. Many of today’s home shoppers are looking for homes with landscaping that is attractive, easy to maintain and ecologically friendly. Xeriscaping is a form of landscaping that can help you achieve all of these results with careful planning. Whether you are landscaping a new home, improving a home for sale or protecting your property investment, landscaping is an important element to consider. Xeriscaping is a method of landscaping that: uses less water than traditional turf landscaping is easy to maintain focuses on native plants provides habitat for native wildlife takes advantage of natural landscaping qualities to maximize existing features can significantly improve the value of your home and property You can achieve a beautiful xeriscape in any yard. Create xeriscaping all at once, or slowly incorporate the conservative method of landscaping over time. Carefully study the yard you want to xeriscape. Create a plan. Determine which features of your yard are best suited for drought-resistant plants, shade-loving plants, sun-loving plants, turf, decorative rocks and other non-living yard decorations. Next, set goals. Work on the xeriscape one area at a time. Identify your main goals for each area. Do you want to eliminate high water consumption landscaping features by replacing it with low-maintenance plants? Do you want to attract butterflies or other forms of beautiful wildlife that will add to your yard’s appeal? Do you want to highlight existing features such as rocks, trees, and natural terraces? Create a plan for each area of the yard. Focus on soil development. Good soil will provide more nutrients to your drought resistant plants. Soil that drains quickly, yet stores water is ideal. Strategically add organic material to soil and aerate it often. Many local extension offices and agriculture departments of colleges and universities offer soil testing. Soil testing will help you identify the strengths and weaknesses of your soil and help you determine what to add with the most positive impact. Determine which plants are best suited to your yard’s natural environment. Once you have determined which plants to use in your xeriscaping, group them together based on the amount of water, soil type, and level of maintenance each plant requires. Plants with high water needs should not be mixed with plants that require little water. Plants that like shade should not be mixed with plants that require full sun. A carefully-developed watering system can save water, time and ultimately money. Even if you develop one area at a time, plan your entire watering system so you can build upon the irrigation system as you work on each area. Dress plants with plenty of mulch to help them retain water. Mulch can include leaves, wood chips, tree bark, pine needles and even gravel. A mixture of these can be ideal. In addition to helping the plant retain water, mulch will help regulate temperature, reduce weeds and prevent erosion. In areas where you do use turf, identify drought-resistant species that grow well in your location. Most importantly, maintain your xeriscaping regularly to preserve its aesthetic and environmentally friendly appeal!

Beautiful yard

Water is a precious commodity. So is time. Many of today’s home shoppers are looking for homes with landscaping that is attractive, easy to maintain and ecologically friendly. Xeriscaping is a form of landscaping that can help you achieve all of these results with careful planning.

Whether you are landscaping a new home, improving a home for sale or protecting your property investment, landscaping is an important element to consider.

Xeriscaping is a method of landscaping that:

  • uses less water than traditional turf landscaping
  • is easy to maintain
  • focuses on native plants
  • provides habitat for native wildlife
  • takes advantage of natural landscaping qualities to maximize existing features
  • can significantly improve the value of your home and property

You can achieve a beautiful xeriscape in any yard. Create xeriscaping all at once, or slowly incorporate the conservative method of landscaping over time.

Carefully study the yard you want to xeriscape. Create a plan. Determine which features of your yard are best suited for drought-resistant plants, shade-loving plants, sun-loving plants, turf, decorative rocks and other non-living yard decorations.

Next, set goals. Work on the xeriscape one area at a time. Identify your main goals for each area. Do you want to eliminate high water consumption landscaping features by replacing it with low-maintenance plants? Do you want to attract butterflies or other forms of beautiful wildlife that will add to your yard’s appeal? Do you want to highlight existing features such as rocks, trees, and natural terraces? Create a plan for each area of the yard.

Focus on soil development. Good soil will provide more nutrients to your drought resistant plants. Soil that drains quickly, yet stores water is ideal. Strategically add organic material to soil and aerate it often. Many local extension offices and agriculture departments of colleges and universities offer soil testing. Soil testing will help you identify the strengths and weaknesses of your soil and help you determine what to add with the most positive impact.

Determine which plants are best suited to your yard’s natural environment. Once you have determined which plants to use in your xeriscaping, group them together based on the amount of water, soil type, and level of maintenance each plant requires. Plants with high water needs should not be mixed with plants that require little water. Plants that like shade should not be mixed with plants that require full sun.

A carefully-developed watering system can save water, time and ultimately money. Even if you develop one area at a time, plan your entire watering system so you can build upon the irrigation system as you work on each area.

Dress plants with plenty of mulch to help them retain water. Mulch can include leaves, wood chips, tree bark, pine needles and even gravel. A mixture of these can be ideal. In addition to helping the plant retain water, mulch will help regulate temperature, reduce weeds and prevent erosion.

In areas where you do use turf, identify drought-resistant species that grow well in your location.

Most importantly, maintain your xeriscaping regularly to preserve its aesthetic and environmentally friendly appeal!