What is Xeriscaping and Why is it Green?

What is Xeriscaping and Why is it Green?

Trent Johnson
Mar 12, 2009

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.

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.

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.

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