Friday, April 22, 2011

Week of Green - Xeriscape Gardening

It is finally Earth Day!
I hope everyone is doing there part, hopefully everyday, to conserve, recycle and green their lives.
Our final "Week of Green" blog is on Xeriscape Gardening. One of the more intensive ways to conserve, but a great one to end our "week of green" and get everyone excited for the planting and gardening season to come! For those of us in the Sun Valley area, or dealing with high altitude gardening, Xeriscape is a great option for creating a sustainable backyard landscape.

Unfortunately, I do not have any hands on experience with Xeriscape, but those at the Sawtooth Botanical Gardens do! I spoke with Carter Hedburg, the Executive Director, and luck had it, they had just finished their Brochure on Xeriscape Gardening!

All of the information below is courtesy of Sawtooth Botanical Garden.

Now for the questions.

What does Xeriscape mean?
Xerscaping is the use of drought tolerant plant species combined with creative landscaping practices to conserve water. It does not mean zero-scaping or an absence of all vegetation and beauty.

What are the benefits?
Reduction of water usage. Water conservation is extremely important in the arid west. Landscaping needs usually account for 30-50% of domestic water use!

Other benefits:
-Low Maintenance
-Protects Water Quality
-Increases the health and beauty of your surroundings
-Decrease the need for pest control
-Saves the homeowner money

The Seven Principals of Xeriscape:
1. Plan and Design
2. Design Practical Turf Areas
3. Use Appropriate Plants
4. Improve the Soil
5. Use Mulch
6. Irrigate Efficiently
7. Maintain Properly

For more information on the Seven Principals, please visit or call the Sawtooth Botanical Garden at 208.726.9358. They also have workshops and lectures year-round for adults on a variety of horticultural and environmental subjects.

Any other tips and comments on Xeriscape are much appreciated!
Have a wonderful Earth Day!

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