Xeriscaping is becoming an increasingly popular landscaping method particularly for gardeners living in drought-prone areas. Xeriscaping is a landscaping method that incorporates the use of plants that require minimal water and utilizing other measures to retain moisture and thus minimizing water need. The following guide shows you how to create a xeriscape lawn and an environment that can thrive with very little water.
Using the Right Plants
The primary key to xeriscaping is selecting plants that are able to survive with minimal watering. Most cactus species fall under the category of drought-tolerant plants. Besides cacti, also take the following plants into consideration:
Limit Grassy Areas
Grass requires water and lots of it, so limit grassy areas by replacing them with either artificial turf grass or incorporating a larger hardscaping surface area, such as a wooden deck or pavement walkway with interlocking stones.
One of the biggest benefits of mulch is the ability to help the soil retain water and reduce moisture loss through evaporation. Mulch also shields the soil to prevent the surface from overheating. The optimal material for mulch will differ depending on your region, though pine needles, grass clippings, seaweed and ground leaves make good options.
Use a Drip Irrigation System
Drip irrigation offers an advantage over a typical sprinkler system. Most drip irrigators come in the form of a hose with perforations or holes and are installed just above the soil. An automated system allows you to water each part of the garden at separate intervals.
For this reason, it helps to group the plants according to their specific watering needs. This helps to preserve water by only providing water where it is needed.
Incorporate Gravel (but not too much)
Some landscapers may opt to use gravel in place of mulch. While gravel in moderation holds some of the same benefits as mulch, using it exclusively can be counterproductive. One of the problems with gravel is that it reflects heat and can transfer it to the plants and cause it to dehydrate. If you choose to use gravel, incorporate a mix of 50% gravel and 50% mulch. You may opt for a greater ratio of mulch but not a greater ratio of gravel.
Xeriscaping is a terrific way of creating a beautiful landscape that can thrive with very little water provided that you create the optimal environment.