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xeriscaping: (indigo blue flower in water)

For anyone interested in low-water gardening

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Created on 2011-01-04 23:57:04 (#685335), last updated 2011-04-28 (334 weeks ago)

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Name:A community for anyone interested in low-water gar
Location:United States of America
Website:Xeriscaping at
Posting Access:All Members
Community description:Learning about xeriscaping by sharing members' experience of the process.
The Xeriscape concept is based on these seven principles:

1. Plan and design: Create a diagram, drawn to scale, that shows the major elements of your landscape, including house, driveway, sidewalk, deck or patio, existing trees and other elements. Once you've completed a basic drawing of the site, think about how you plan to use your new xeriscape. Develop a planting map that accommodates these plans.

2. Soil amendment: All plants will benefit from the use of compost, which will help the soil retain water.

3. Efficient irrigation: Xeriscaping is not no-water gardening, but rather low-water and managed-water gardening. Zone turf areas separately from other plants and use the irrigation method that waters the plants in each area most efficiently. Water deeply and infrequently to develop deep roots.

4. Appropriate plant and zone selection: Different areas in your yard receive different amounts of light, wind and moisture. To minimize water waste, group together plants with similar light and water requirements, and place them in an area that matches these requirements. Xeriscaping is not all cactus, succulents and rocks. Research plants appropriate to the conditions of your yard to find those that will use the least water but still carry the best visual impact.

5. Mulch: Mulch keeps plant roots cool, prevents soil from crusting, minimizes evaporation and reduces weed growth.

6. Alternative turf: Native grasses that have been cultivated for turf lawns can survive with a quarter of the water that bluegrass varieties need. Choose your low-water grass according to the use your lawn will get.

7. Maintenance: All landscapes require some degree of care during the year. Plan your xeriscape keeping in mind the amount of work you're willing to do to maintain it.

(Adapted from the Denver Program Seven Principles found in the Wikipedia article on xeriscaping.)
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