Colorado Springs is in a dry region that receives below-average amount of precipitation compared in other cities in the United States. In fact, Colorado Springs is considered high desert. Plant growth is a problem here because of our cycles of water scarcity. If you love plants but don’t know how to grow them in a dry area, read on. Sundown Landscaping outlines how a Xeriscape yard design can add an aesthetic look to your area without using a lot of water. Xeriscaping could be the solution you have been looking for!
What is Xeriscaping?
In Latin, xero means dry, and scape means land or view. Xeriscape design is all about choosing plants that can grow well in the landscape with as little water as possible, meaning your yard needs little or no supplementary water beyond what the natural environment provides. Xeriscaping is an efficient and effective way to save both time and resources in the landscape as it leads to favorable outcomes such as decreased weed production, creation of dense natural plantings, reduced use of fertilizers and pesticides, and less yard upkeep. Xeriscaping design includes xeric plants, limitation of turf, soil amendment, effective irrigation and mulch considerations.
What is a Xeric Plant?
Xeric plants are those that need little water to grow and therefore perform well in drought conditions. Generally, it is best to choose native plants for xeriscaping as they are more suited to geographical changes in climate than non-native plants and eliminate the need for unnecessary irrigation, fertilizers or pesticides. Colorado’s xeric plants include Agastache, Fernbush, Panchito Manzanita and Yarrow.
Limit Grass in Xeriscape Design
Limitation of turf does not mean no grass. You can still enjoy a small lawn area that involves little or no irrigation if it is built with good soil, suitable grass variety, and careful maintenance. Grass is naturally resilient. It requires water to grow and preserves itself by going dormant in arid conditions and only reviving once regular rainfall returns.
Add an Amendment to the Soil
The plant layout plan of xeriscape requires careful consideration as you will achieve the best results with the least amount of time if you adapt plants to the right growing conditions. Adding an amendment to the soil gives plants the best possible foundation. You can take a soil test to determine the best soil amendment for your landscape.
A good xeriscape needs extensive, continuous watering over the first two summers to train plant roots to expand deep into the cool soil. Inadequate irrigation will stall growth and can make the plants unnecessarily dependent on you for many years. Effective irrigation options include hand watering, a sprinkler system, drip irrigation on a grid or soil grading for your land.
Use of Organic Mulch in Xeriscaping
Mulch can be likened to sun protection for plant roots. Just two to four inches of mulch will significantly delay evaporation, preserve soil moisture and shield roots from overheating. This is particularly beneficial to ornamental plants and vegetables. In addition, mulch can help minimize weeds that compete with your desired landscape plants for water, nutrients and light. While mulch can be constructed of inorganic mulches, Sundown Landscaping recommends organic mulches such as pine straw, pine bark, and shredded hardwood as they preserve moisture and add nutrients to the soil as they decay.
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If you want to a xeriscape design for your yard, you can call Sundown Landscaping to help you create a one-of-a-kind xeriscape landscape design that highlights our region’s native plant species and utilizes rock and other ground covers, to create a visually appealing landscape that conserves valuable resources for the next generation.