What is Xeriscaping and Why is it Green?

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You may have heard the term xeriscaping or xerogardening and knew it was a green concept in landscaping but do you actually know what it means? I didn't before recently. Here are some of the basics, after the jump.

Xeriscaping and xerogardening is a term for landscaping or gardening in a way that reduces the need for irrigation. This goes beyond just planting native species but takes into account your particular area's supply of fresh water. It is similar to drought-tolerant landscaping and often called zeroscaping or smart scaping.

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Xeriscsaping not only lowers water consumption but can also lead to a lower maintenance yard as plants that require less water often grow much more slowly.

From Wikipedia, some common benefits to xeriscaping include:

  • Lower water bills
  • More water available for other uses and other people (such as showers, sinks, hoses etc.)
  • Less time and work needed for maintenance, making gardening more simple and stress-free
  • Little or no lawnmowing (saves energy)
  • Xeriscape plants along with proper bed design tends to take full advantage of rainfall
  • When water restrictions are implemented, xeriscape plants will tend to survive, while more traditional plants may be unable to adapt.
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Common plants that require little to no water including cactus and succulents, thyme, lavender and juniper. Below you will find a larger list of drought resistant flowers, trees and shrubs.

Drought resistant flowers for Xeriscaping:

  • Perennials
  • Asters
  • Baby's Breath
  • Columbine
  • Coreopsis
  • Echinacea
  • Iris
  • Lamb's Ears
  • Lavender
  • Pansy
  • Sages
  • Tulips and crocuses
  • Yucca
  • Marigold
  • Zinnias

Drought resistant shrubs and trees:

  • Japanese black pine
  • Mountain currant
  • Sassafras
  • Honeysuckle
  • Spirea
  • California lilac
  • Heather
  • Acacia
  • Gray Birch
  • Common Pater Mulberry
  • European Hackberry
  • Monterey Cypress
  • Eucalyptus
  • Fig
  • Juniper
  • Common Olive
  • White Poplar
  • Black Locust
  • Siberian Elm
  • Gray Dogwood
  • Amur Maple

Inspiration and photos from EcoSalon's Plants You Can't Kill and information from Wikipedia.