Xeriscaping - Drought Tolerant Landscapes
Xeriscaping is simply "sustainable landscaping practices" through the use of drought tolerant and native plantings, composting, mulching, Xerigation or "low volume drip" irrigation, which greatly reduces water consumption in your landscape, vegetable or herb garden.
Regional Xeriscaping in the West
Central Oregon soils have the unique distinction of being heavily volcanic and rich in pumice, sand and ash making for superior drainage but lousy water retention at the root zone of your plant life. Consider the difference between the rainy wooded areas of Washington a little further north. Washington is rich in moisture and deciduous plant life, which leaves behind leaves in the form of organic compost matter, which in turn gives plants the necessary nutrients for life such as Nitrogen and many other micronutrients. In Central Oregon however our challenge to sustain plant life is one that takes some research and experience.
Xeriscaping in the High Desert of Central Oregon
Benefits of Xeriscaping practices are obvious especially in sandy well-drained soils like sand and pumice. As landscapers we must remember though, that not all plants like amended soils, some desert plants such as Cactus might drown with too much water retention and organic soil content but will thrive in sandier more porous soils. Intelligent landscape design coupled with smart plant choices then followed by low volume irrigation applications bring it all together for the bigger picture.
Xeriscape Advantages (from Wikipedia)
Lowers consumption of imported or ground water.
- More water available for other domestic and community uses and the environment.
Less time and work needed for maintenance effort, with gardening simpler and less stressful.
- Little or no lawn mowing
Xeriscape plants in appropriate planting design, and soil grading and mulching, takes full advantage of rainfall retention
When water restrictions are implemented, by municipality or water costs, xeriscape plants will tend to survive and thrive, while more ornamental plants may be unable to adapt
The Effects of Xeriscape Landscape Design on Water Conservation
Consider that eventually all districts across the country will tighten restrictions on watering. What happens to the ornamental species in your landscape once water has been cut back? Native species will thrive with little to no supplemental landscape watering while your ornamentals may wither and die, or be very unhealthy. If we think ahead and plan we can help to ensure that your beautiful ornamentals live through some of these hard times.
Here at Nature's Plan we know that each year it gets harder and harder to manage a high water usage landscape which is why we focus on "WaterSmart" and Xeriscaping landscape services here in Central Oregon.
For the person who installs their new yard with Xeriscape and water conservation in mind there will be little to no adjustments to be made in the future. For the guy with a large turf area and no amended soils plus a poorly designed sprinkler system he might be told to shut it down until upgrades are installed.
Pitfalls of Commerical Soil and Fertilizers
There are also a lot of international and national chemical and fertilizer companies, I wont mention any names who don’t care about our particular soil and plant feeding needs, it might hurt sales to mention that we need locally blended plant foods because of our volcanic high desert location. We buy and use locally formulated plant fertilizers to meet our specific Central Oregon plant and soil needs and to stay environmentally responsible.
Xeriscaping in Central Oregon
We can retrofit, restore, or install irrigation and backflow management systems to prepare you for the eventuality of new, stricter water use standards throughout the West!
We can also design and install beautiful hanging baskets, raised planters of wood or recycled products and custom wood built vertical gardens and put ultra smart irrigation control at your fingertips.
Contact Nature's Plan today and start improving your environment!
Saving our water, saving you money, saving the health of your plant life and surroundings, and ensuring safe drinking water for all... Its a no brainer!