Water is a resource that’s often taken for granted until it is becomes scarce. Last month, the White House held a World Water Day Summit to discuss water sustainability. Corporations like Kellogg Company, Anheuser-Bush & Levi-Strauss & Co. were recognized for their efforts to reduce the amount water they utilize in their manufacturing processes. This achievement becomes even more significant as states like California continue to battle droughts and impose water usage restrictions on their citizens. One water conservation trend that is allowing homeowners to follow in the footsteps of these companies is xeriscaping. Here’s what you need to know about this up and coming trend!
What it is: The United States Environmental Protection Agency states that 1/3 of all residential water usage is dedicated to landscape irrigation. In a time where water supply is of a concern, xeriscaping is becoming a popular option because its focus is on landscaping that limits or completely stops the need for additional watering. It’s also winning favor with homeowners because of reduced maintenance costs that come with it.
Rainwater Barrels: When integrated into a gutter system, a rainwater barrel can collect significant amounts of rain for keeping plants hydrated. This technique saves money and is better for your plants since it does not expose them to the chemicals and additives found in city water.
Picking Your Plants: Successful xeriscaping requires strategy. The primary rule of thumb is selecting plants that are not water guzzlers. Clustering plants that need similar amounts of water can also save on the amount of water being used. When selecting plants, you should seek out those native to the portion of the country you live in, as they are predisposed to thrive in your yard. Prairie flowers and grasses are native to the Midwest and can handle the rapid variances in temperature and rainfall.
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Decks & Patios: An optional xeriscaping element is the inclusion of a deck or patio. Both options yield a high return on investment because they add more livable space to a home and are sought after options for potential homeowners. A perk of these features is that they reduce the amount of landscaping that must be tended to. Mulch: A key component of xeriscaping is mulch which can lessen water evaporation while staving off weeds, which can rob your plants of essential soil nutrients and water. If organic mulch is utilized, it will slowly decay and upgrade the soil’s quality.