CHARLOTTE – A waterwise landscape requires minimal supplemental water after it’s established. It is landscaping with water conservation as a priority. North Carolina is not an overall dry environment, but we do experience our fair share of dry spells and drought conditions. It is these stressful times that test the drought hardiness of a plant. Fortunately, North Carolina is home to more native plant species than possibly any other state. In fact, many of these species are very tolerant of seasonal dry conditions and will usually do better during dry periods than exotic or hybrid species.
The simplest, most efficient rule you can apply when gardening is to pick the right plant for the right spot. This will not only save you money on your water bill but will also allow the plant to thrive. Your local nursery can be very helpful when seeking guidance for what plants, especially native, do well in our particular area of the state.
6 Ways to Conserve Water
- Planning and Design. Take the time to plan out your design. Create different water use zones and allocate the water where it will be utilized most effectively and efficiently.
- Design Practical Turf Areas. Limit the size of lawn areas and use native grasses as much as possible that have a tendency to be drought-resistance.
- Use Appropriate Plants. Choose plants for hot, dry south and west-facing areas. Use plants that like more moisture along north and east-facing areas. Don’t mix plants with high and low watering needs in the same planting area.
- Improve the Soil. Add compost whenever you plant. This helps the soil hold extra moisture.
- Apply Mulch. Mulch helps retain soil moisture. Mulching also helps capture rainwater by allowing hard rains to soak into the soil instead of running off.
- Irrigate Efficiently. Use soaker hoses and drip irrigation to water deeply encouraging deep root growth. Keep irrigation systems running properly.