By: Mary H. Dyer, Credentialed Garden Writer
Oregon State University Extension reports that across the nation irrigation of landscapes accounts for one-third of water used, meaning less water for drinking, agriculture, or wildlife. Recent drought conditions across most of the country present major challenges, which requires us, as gardeners, to step up our water conservation efforts. Armed with an understanding of basic xeriscape principles, we can enjoy beautiful gardens without wasting valuable resources. Read on for water-wise gardening tips.
Here are seven basic tips for water-wise xeriscaping:
Don’t fertilize lawns or plants excessively, as fertilizer encourages rapid growth that demands more water.
Consider alternative, more advanced ways of conserving water. For example, many gardeners in rainy climates are finding ways to incorporate rain barrels or rain gardens. It’s also possible to recycle gray water (household water from washing machines or showers).
Take advantage of shady areas. Even areas with dappled light or partial shade require far less water than plants in hot, blazing sun. Similarly, plant wisely in windy areas where soil dries quickly.
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