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What is Xeriscaping, and How to do it Yourself

Updated: Mar 21, 2022

Not all climates are created equal. You have moist tropical climates, cold and frosted climates, hot and arid climates, the list goes on and on. For those who live in hot and arid climates, the management of their environment can be a bit tricky--especially when it comes to landscaping and gardening.

Colorado can be a very unforgiving environment for local flora--despite how beautiful the state is. That is why xeriscaping has become the de facto method for managing the plant life outside of many Colorado homes and businesses. But, what is it?

  • What is Xeriscaping?

Xeriscaping is a new take on the concept of landscaping. It utilizes drought-resistant plants that are called ‘xerophytes.’ The most commonly known xerophyte is, of course, cactus. However, there is a massive list of additional xerophytes that are all incredibly resistant to harsh arid climates and long seasons of drought.

Xeriscaping uses drought-resistant plants to landscape property. Instead of using plants that require additional water to be imported into the area through advanced irrigation networks; xeriscaping uses plants that are generally already local to the desert region and/or are incredibly resistant to drought in general.

Xeriscaping has even been known to replace grass altogether as it can be far too moisture intensive. With xeriscaping you can instead go with mulch, soil, stones, etc,. Xeriscaping is an entirely different way of landscaping your property. It creates an environment that is resistant to drought, while also utilizing more efficient irrigation techniques.

  • Xeriscaping Your Own Property.

If you live in a dry, hot climate such as Colorado, you may be interested in knowing how you can xeriscape your own lawn or commercial property. Well, the good news is, it’s fairly straightforward--however it might be a bit labor intensive at first.

The general concept is to replace your hyper moisture-absorbing plants with those that don’t require a lot of moisture at all. This generally means plants that are desert native and or/are highly drought-resistant by nature. This includes a wide range of plant life such as:

  • Any species of cactus.

  • Agave.

  • Juniper.

  • Herbs such as thyme, sage, and oregano.

  • Sapodilla.

  • Artichoke.

  • Black walnut.

  • Daffodils.

  • Myrtles.

  • And more!

You will also need to install more water-efficient irrigation systems such as drips and soaker hoses that will help to direct water in a more conservative manner. These techniques and more can be learned, or done for you with the help of a professional desert climate landscaper.

  • Why Xeriscape at All?

Xeriscaping is designed for really one major purchase: To conserve water. Xeriscaping is estimated to save anywhere from 50% to 75% of water consumption as opposed to traditional landscaping methods.

Year over year water is becoming more of a commodity in arid climates like Colorado. Being able to conserve this precious resource and save energy in the long process is the greatest benefit of xeriscaping. Beyond that, it can help your property look more naturally at home in its environment!

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