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Xeriscaping is also known as xerogardening. It refers to landscaping and gardening in ways that reduce or eliminate the need for supplemental water from irrigation. It is promoted in regions that do not have sufficiently accessible, plentiful, or reliable supplies of fresh water, and is gaining acceptance in other areas as climate patterns shift. Therefore, xeriscaping refers to a method of landscape design that minimizes water use. Also, xeriscaping means simply landscaping with slow-growing, drought tolerant plants to conserve water and reduce yard trimmings.
Xeriscaping is very important i.e. why is xeriscaping practiced in some places e.g. in California. By asking ourselves this question, we are able to denote that there are benefits that are associated with xeriscaping. Some of these benefits are discussed in the following paragraphs.
The first benefit is that the level of maintenance in xeriscaping is less compared to the other gardening and landscaping techniques. Aside from occasional pruning and weeding, maintenance is minimal. Watering requirements are low, and can be met with simple irrigation systems. From the definition of xeriscape, we note that the types of plants that grow or are being grown in this landscape are the ones that consume less water.
Another benefit of xeriscaping is that the plants are natives. This means that the plants found in xeriscaping landscape can survive in any condition be it hot, wet, cool e.t.c. This point further explains the preceding point hence insisting on the point that they require less maintenance. By being native, it means that one can survive in any condition without much attention. For example, weeding, pruning, cultivating and so on and so on.
Another point is that they require less water for their survival. Plants which grow in this condition are known as xerophytes. Xerophytes are plants which take in water and store it in their trunks for further use. These plants do not require a lot of water to survive as they have specific features that allow them to suitably adapt to the environment they live in.
They also provide a natural habitat to the wildlife. Xeriscaping landscapes provide homes to wildlife, some of which are too small to be noticed easily and some of them are big enough to be seen by our naked eyes. Thus, this helps in conserving wildlife as their habitats are conserved and maintained adequately.
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It is pollution free as fossil fuels from gas mowers is minimized or eliminated with minimal turf areas. Small turf areas can be maintained by a real mower. This sentence explains how the use of gas mowers is discouraged in this kind of landscaping. These landscaping are usually not big enough for one to require a gas mower and it is from these gas mowers that emissions are emitted to the atmosphere hence pollutions takes place. In xeriscaping, the pieces of land dealt with are usually small pieces of land and therefore whenever cultivating season is at hand, there is no need for gas or diesel powered machines that pollute the environment as one individual can manage comfortably working on that lawn.
Last but not least, using plants that are native to your area eliminates the need of chemical supplements. By chemical supplements, I mean the use of fertilizers and pesticides in order to boost growth of the plants and this brings about pollution of the soil. Sufficient nutrients are provided by a healthy organic soil and therefore there is no need for use of fertilizers.
Drought resistant plant, drought tolerant plant, drought adapted plant, low -water- use plant, are all terms garden, landscape and nursery persons use to describe whatever plant they think is the drought tolerant of the month. In California, it doesn’t receive a lot of rain from the end of April to the first of November. But in winter, it does rain a lot and therefore most of the plants are drowned during winter.
Some of the native plants of California that are said to be drought resistant are: California redbud, Cleveland sage, Coast live oak, Deer grass e.t.c. California native plants can be found growing in various types of soil and exposures including wet, dry and very dry conditions. One common misconception is that native plants do not need water. That is not true as all plants even the most drought tolerant need some water.
The Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden is a botanical garden in Claremont, California, in the United States, just south of the San Gabriel foothills. The garden, at 86 acres (34.8 hectares), is a non-profit organization dedicated to California native plants. The garden originated in 1927 when Susanna Bixby Bryant established a native garden on her rancho in Orange County. The garden relocated to Claremont in 1951. The garden now contains some 70,000 native Californian plants, representing 2,000 native species, hybrids and cultivars. The garden has an active research department, specializing in systematic botany and floristic. The combined herbarium of the garden and neighboring Pomona College holds over 1,000,000 specimens. The garden offers graduate degrees in botany through Claremont Graduate University.
In southern California, water is so precious and therefore there is great need to conserve it. However, standing on my front porch viewing green patch after green patch of well-watered lawns you'd think California wasn't experiencing a water shortage. To confirm we truly are going into our fourth year of drought, our local water and Power Company has put a moratorium on limiting the watering of lawns to two days a week. Though there are monetary incentives to switching over to a semi-arid, xeric landscape, only a few homes in my neighborhood have drastically changed out their lawn to a more drought-tolerant and arid-friendly garden.
Why are so few people willing to alter their landscaping? Most likely because tearing out a pre-existing lawn is labor intensive, and some people really love their green, water-hungry lawn despite the water shortage. Yet, there are so many more benefits to what is known as Xeriscaping, or "dry" gardening. Xeric landscaping means planting native flowers and plants to your region that require very little water. These are the plants you see on the hillsides, prairies, or open spaces where no one has tended to them, but they flourish anyway.
Before planting a xeric garden, however, having a plan is essential so that your garden doesn't end up looking like an overgrown, scruffy lot. A couple of great online resources include Sunset.com and Better Homes and Gardens. Both of these online sites have gardening plans that help ease the stress of trying to figure out where to plant what. Better Homes and Gardens even have a custom Plan-a-Garden online application that lets you map out your yard based on its shape and size.
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