California Guide to Water Wise Gardening - California American Water’s
California American Water’s Reduce Water Use with Water Wise GardeningGUIDE TO WATER WISE GARDENING Brought to you by: California gardeners know that our state’s dry, hot summers and limited water resources can create special gardening challenges. Selecting the right plants, especially those that are drought-resistant, or have low water needs, has become increasingly important. 640 Larkfield Center Drought-tolerant or “xeriscape” landscaping is a Santa Rosa, CA 95403 practical and easy way to enjoy plants that will (707) 542-8329 thrive in your garden with less maintenance, chemical use and watering. A naturally-maintained To request more information garden using native and drought-tolerant plants about our conservation and rebate programs, please with low water needs is healthier for people, pets email us at: and the environment. email@example.com California American Water’s recently complete or visit us online at: Larkfield garden at 4790 Londonberry Drive,Larkfield Water Wise Community Demonstration Garden, 4790 Londonberry Drive www.californiaamwater.com. includes a number of low water-use plants, shrubs and trees. In addition to being an inviting benefit to the neighborhood, the new garden requires less irrigation and showcases the wide variety of plant colors and textures available for low water-use gardening. TIP: Drought-tolerant and/or native plants, often used in xeriscape gardening, remain attractive throughout the year and require less fertilizer and no pesticides, thereby improving water quality. SPECIAL ACKNOWLEDGEMENT TO: • Gwen Kilchherr, Landscape Consultant & Arborist, (707) 527-6177 Water wise gardens can be beautiful and low maintenance. • Sonoma County Water Agency, www.scwa.ca.gov or (707) 526-5370 Visit California American Water’s newly planted demonstration • Bryan Healey, Landscape Contractor, Healey Inc., (707) 541-0777 garden shown here at 4790 Londonberry Drive.
How to Create Your Water Wise Garden matter prior to planting. This improves root Water Smart the soil is nearly dry. Adjust them seasonally and development and improves water penetration Even low-water and as plants become more established. Consider and retention. Now is also the time to create drought-tolerant plants installing a weather-based timer that automatically raised beds, remove invasive weeds and add need irrigation their adjusts to the changing rock or water features. first two or three climate and conditions seasons. Group plants to save you time while Pick the by water requirements giving your plants just Right Plants so each area receives the right amount of Whenever possible, just the right amount. watering. choose native plants, Drip irrigation and Helianthemum nummularium Proper pruning, weeding, plants that thrive soaker hoses decrease ‘Wisely Pink’ (Sunrose) and annual additions of without irrigation, or waste and save you mulch will help control Teucrium fruticans plants with needs that money by applying water directly to the soil. ‘Azureum’ (Germander) weeds save water, match the climate Identify the natural soil type in your garden enhance the beauty of your landscape and give Verbena bonariensis and conditions in your (clay, loam, sandy, etc.) and be sure to set your your new garden a chance to grow. garden. Most are easy to grow and have adapted to the local irrigation system to match. For example, tight climate and pests. Selecting a wide variety of clay soil absorbs water slowly. Reduce irrigation disease-resistant plants will attract wildlife and or water in shorterPlan and Design intervals to prevent insects that eat pests and enhance the beauty ofPlan before you plant. Assess site conditions, standing water and your landscape as well.including light, soil, drainage and moisture to run-off.determine what plants will survive. Determine Plant Properlyhow you want to use your garden and how much Hard-to-reach areas Help your plants get off to a good start. Fall or wintertime you want to spend maintaining it. Plan such as slopes can is the best time to plant, or early in the springto situate higher water-use plants nearest the be planted with after the last frost. Dighouse and/or where natural water drainage ground covers that a hole large enoughflows, while adding a wildlife garden in a less- Grevillea crowd out weeds, to accommodate the (Coastal Gem)traveled area. Consider plant variety, size, require little watering plant’s roots. Preparetexture, color, and bloom time to ensure year- and are easy to maintain. Keep watering the soil by looseninground interest. intervals on sloped terrain short (2 to 3 minutes) and amending with to prevent water waste from runoff. compost and use mulchPrepare the Site to keep roots moist for Maintain the MomentumGood soil is the most important ingredient for a a more “finished” look. Euphorbia characias A well-maintained garden conserves water, timehealthy garden. Test your soil and work with yourlocal nursery or County Extension Office to add (Wulfenii) and resources. Check irrigation systems regularlythe proper amount of amendments and organic to ensure they are providing deep soakings when Drought-tolerant plant photos by Martin Fletcher www.californiagardens.com