Landscaping During a Time of Drought

Even though it may seem like a futile effort to landscape during drought, there are good reasons to do so. During a drought, or if you live in perpetual drought in a semi-arid region, you have an opportunity to carefully consider your landscaping choices. And, plants, trees and shrubs have other benefits. They can prevent soil erosion, make your home more energy efficient, and provide a soothing landscape that can help relieve mental fatigue. Here are four things to keep in mind as you plan your landscape during a time of drought.

1.Moisture. This is one of the biggest considerations you have to make. Avoid using trees and plants that require a great deal of moisture. While there are varieties of rose that do not need so much water, most of them require a great deal of it. Find trees, shrubs, and plants (like many varieties of ornamental grasses) that do not need a lot of water. For those plants that do need more moisture, place them on lower sections of your property. This way they can receive the benefit of run-off.

2.Placement. Pay attention to where you want to put your landscape elements on your property. As mentioned above, try to place plants that need more water (like trees) on lower ground. Other placement concerns include light needed by the plants. Property sections to the west and the south often receive more light. They are also usually drier. Make sure that your placement of plants in your landscape reflects their needs.

3.Available space. In any landscape, this is major consideration. However, during times of drought this is especially important. Make sure that you have adequate space for the plants you choose. Rooting space and air space should be taken into consideration. Keep larger growing plants away from driveways, buildings, gardens, or property lines. Find out which plants need what kind of space. The smaller the space a plant takes up, the fewer nutrients it needs.

4.Plant selection. Your best option in drought-stricken areas is to make sure that you choose plants that will not grow very large. Many evergreens do not grow terribly large; you can find them that reach less than six feet in height. If you are choosing deciduous trees, choose those that have less than two inches caliper. Their water requirements will be much lower. Also, select plants that are indigenous to the area, or plants that thrive in semi-arid climates. This way you will be able to avoid the plants more likely to wither during a drought.

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