If the fears about global warming are true and if the drought now settled through California is to be the new normal, then fans of gardening are going to have to re-think everything they ever learned about there hobby.
Constant extreme heat will make the commodity we know as water equal in value to gold or silver. Forget accidentally over watering the lawn or leaving the hose dripping in the center of a garden bed. The government, whether local, county, or state, will extremely reduce its use.
When it comes you won’t have to give up your passion. Instead, you will have to re-imagine what is the new beautiful.
Xeriscaping (often misspelled zero-scaping or xeroscaping) will be the basis of your garden and calls for the limited use or even the elimination of the need for supplemental watering.
The plants featured in your garden will thrive on low-water maintenance and will include such species as:
· Echinocactus Grusoni. A slow growing cactus native to Mexico that is covered with golden spines. It grows to the height of 4-feet and a width of 2-1/2-feet.
· Lewisia Cotyledon. Native to California and Oregon, this is a blooming plant that features evergreen foliage and grows to 1-foot tall and 10-inches wide. It thrives in areas where the drainage is good and looks great in a rock garden.
· Nassella Tenuissima. This is actually grass native to Texas, New Mexico, and Mexico. It features fine green blades that form into clumps and grows to 2-feet tall and wide.
· Sedum Spathulifolium. A California native, it exhibits tiny blue-green leaves that form tight ornament-like designs on trailing stems. It is ideal as a ground cover.
· Lavandula Multifida. This is a Mediterranean shrub with a silver folia cover. It grows to a width of 3-feet and a height of 1-1/2-feet. It features thin stems topped with a violet flower that is revealed during spring and on into fall.
· Libertia Peregrinans. Ideal as a ground cover, this Iris-relation features thin, stiff orangey blades and includes clusters of an inch-wide white flower that comes out in the spring and summer. It grows to a height of 2-feet and a width of 1-foot.
· Sedum Rupestre. Native of Europe, it is succulent and spreads freely forming a fluffy-like ground cover between other plants. It features short chartreuse leaves that grow on stems to a height of 6-inches.
· Sedum Spurium. This low-growing, quick spreading flora includes small, round burgundy leaves that bloom in the summer.
· Salvia Clevelandii. Native to Southern California and northern Baja, it features purple-blue flower spikes that rise from gray-green foliage. It commonly appears in early summer and grows to a height of 3-feet to 5-feet and a width of 5-feet to 8-feet.
· Sempervivum. This plant grows into clumps with gray-green, pink-tipped ornaments that are from 2-inches to 5-inches across. The folia covering 2-feet or more.
· Agastache Rugosa. This features glossy green, licorice-scented leaves growing from stems and reach a height of 5-feet and width of 2-feet. Native a Korea, it displays purple-blue flowers that attract hummingbirds.
· Helictotrichon Sempervirens. Native to the southwest and Rockies, this blue-gray grass-like plant grows in clumps to a height and width of 2-feet to 3-feet. Blond-color flower clusters bloom 2-feet above the foliage in the spring.
These plants consume much lower amounts of water than normal plants and are less costly to maintain.
They may not have the aesthetics of more common plants. Moreover, they take up lawn space and include species that have thorns or jagged edges that can harm pets and children.