If you live in an arid climate, your landscaping options are likely limited. However, just because you have to conserve water doesn’t mean you’re completely out of options. Xeriscaping and drought-resistant landscaping design can make landscaping fun and beautiful even in arid climates without much water access.
This article describes the various landscaping options available to you if you live in a dry climate. You should use them to create an effective xeriscaping landscape that is both environmentally conscious and beautiful. Continue reading to learn more about drought-resistant landscape plans.
What Is Xeriscaping?
Xeriscaping describes landscapes that use a minimalistic approach. Materials such as gravel eliminate the need for extensive irrigation solutions. Xeriscape landscape designs require little to no water beyond what the climate provides.
Denver, Colorado, was one of the first municipalities to use xeriscaping in the 70s, describing a new Colorado landscape technique. The city’s water department encouraged residents to use less water for lawns and gardens, so residents turned to alternative design elements such as rock displays, gravel, and perennials.
What Are Drought-Resistant Plants?
Cacti are the most common forms of xeriscape-friendly plants. It has hundreds of species across North and South America, and they have evolved many physical adaptations to conserve water. Their prickly spines protect them from water-seeking animals and their thick stems can store large amounts of water. Their waxy skin also reduces the water they lose to evaporation.
Though cacti are the most common forms of xeriscaping plants, there are many others. Other drought-resistant plants include the following:
You can also use spices and herbs in xeriscaping, such as thyme, sage, and oregano.
How to Prep Your Landscape for Xeriscaping
Prep Your Soil
In most dry climates, the soil isn’t the most conducive for deep root growth. You can prep your plot of land by using a rototiller to work compost such as aged manure into the ground. The rototiller increases the soil’s water-holding capacity and promotes deep root growth.
Choose the Right Plants
Flowers and shrubs have different needs. If one plant has different needs than the other, you should consider separating them. Separating the plants this way makes your job easier, and it is more time and resource-intensive.
Succulents save both water and space, making them an ideal landscape idea for drought-resistant landscape design. They are also considered the highest growth category in the nursery business, surpassing the vegetable category for the top spot.
Succulents have a wide variety of sculptural shapes and colors, and they only require one monthly watering once established, making them an ideal choice for drought-resistant landscapes.
However, succulents pose some challenges in environments that are too cold, too sunny, or too moisturized, so you need to consider these factors before implementing them into your landscape.
Create Borders With Drought Resistant Landscape
Creating border with drought-resistant perennials is one of the best ways to enjoy your landscaping project., Some examples of colorful perennials that can add to your landscape include:
- Gailardia- Comes in red, yellow, and orange daisy-like flowers.
- Perovskia atriplicifolia (Russian Sage)- scented, delicate silver leaves with purple buds.
Native plants not only contribute to a beautiful garden. You can also use them for lack of water, making them an excellent choice for drought-resistant landscape ideas. The following tips provide guidance for implementing borders in your landscape design with drought-resistant plants:
- Find native plants that fit your climate and land plot.
- Spread roughly three inches of mulch between widely-spaced plants.
- Install a drip-irrigation system that wastes less water and delivers hydration to plants.
- A basin or a picket fence can provide great focal points to drought-resistant plants.
Lavender and sage are excellent choices for perennials, and you can easily add them by planting a strip of them next to hardscapes. Reducing the amount of grass during the summer months can also reserve valuable water for your perennials and placing your perennials in elevated containers can add volume and texture to your landscape design.
Drought Tolerant Shrubs and Mosses
Hardscape portions can pose a challenge for a drought-resistant garden. Some of the following tips can help you implement shrubs and mosses into your landscape:
- Choose shrubs and evergreens that don’t require extensive watering
- Mulch is an essential component of keeping the soil moisturized, improving its health
- Mosses live in shady areas, and they aid in soil erosion. They absorb water and provide it to other species.
- If you have pavers, place thyme around them to prevent them from absorbing too much heat.
Heat and Drought Tolerant Plants
Using xeriscape elements such as pea gravel in your backyard is an effective way to reduce your dependence on water, chemical fertilizers, and mowing, keeping it nice and tidy.
Unusual Drought-Tolerant Landscape Design Ideas
Xeriscaping is one of the easiest ways to keep your landscape design drought-resistant. Some of the following perennials are ideal for drought-resistant landscape designs:
- Snow in Summer
Native Plants Drought-Resistant Garden Ideas
Landscape design ideas depend on your climate and you shouldn’t try to implement plants that can’t survive easily in your temperature. Even with drought-resistant plants, you should install an irrigation drip system to conserve water. You can also use a porous material between pavement and stones to provide easier access for rain seepage.
Ornamental Grasses for a Drought-Resistant Yard
You can create a lush aesthetic to your drought-resistant landscape by implementing a few species of drought-resistant ornamental grasses. When you place these grasses strategically throughout your landscape, they supply texture and color.
Conclusion- Drought Tolerant Landscape Plants
Landscaping isn’t the easiest process in dry climates. However, with solutions such as xeriscaping and drought-resistant plants, you can effectively turn your landscape plot into a beautiful area that you enjoy.
There are many ways to implement drought-resistant plants into your landscape. You can use succulents, native plants, ornamental grasses, and perennials in combination with xeriscaping elements to ensure your landscape design conserves water while remaining aesthetically pleasing.