Water is a precious commodity. In some U.S. states, as well as around the world, it’s even more precious due to prolonged drought conditions. However, the beauty and bounty of flowers and plants are equally precious – in different ways. The good news is that there are many different types of plants that conserve water while still providing beauty, greenery, and shade to the world around them.
Shade trees conserve water in many different ways. If you choose the right tree, it will use little water itself. But a good shade tree, planted in a manner to provide precious shade to the majority of your lawn, can also reduce the need for irrigation on the ground – especially if you choose drought resistant grass or other groundcover that thrives in the shade.
If that’s not enough, a good, fast growing shade tree planted on the south or west side of your home can help to reduce your energy bills on even the hottest days summer has to throw your way.
While these trees are generally drought tolerant, that’s no guarantee that they will thrive without a little assistance. The Arbor Foundation recommends helping drought tolerant shade trees get a good foundation by watering regularly and covering them with wood chip mulch to help retain moisture in the soil – at least until the roots are deep and well established.
Who says you can’t have beautiful flowers without a lot of rain? It’s a vicious rumor that is patently false. You can have your cake (stunningly brilliant flowers) and eat it too, even if you live in an area that’s been plagued by long-term drought.
Shrubs are a great way to add height to your lawn and garden. Choosing drought tolerant shrubs allows you to reserve a special area of your garden for more delicate flowers or plants or to conserve water altogether. These shrubs allow you to lend lush greenery to your outdoor living space, while still providing appropriate pops of colors throughout with their beautiful flowers.
Don’t forget the importance of collecting water whenever possible. Even though these hardy plants can tolerate little water, it doesn’t mean they don’t need some water in order to grow and thrive. Use rain barrels and other methods of collecting water, and prioritize watering pecking order according to the needs and benefits of the plants.
With so many great choices available, you can have a beautiful garden in practically any environment whether you’re conserving water out of necessity or simply doing your part to conserve this precious resources.
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