The word XERISCAPE comes from combining two words… XERI derived from the Greek word ‘xeros’ for dry and SCAPE that relates to views and scenes. So literally, xeriscape means Dry Scene.
Xeriscaping is not really a garden style but a garden practice. The idea is to conserve water, reduce maintenance practices and work with what is native in your area, either hardscape materials or plants.
So how Dry Scene translate to designing outdoor spaces? The general design concepts in design remain the same but the elements that you bring to the space are carefully selected. Landscapes need to be planned to be compatible with locally available resources, including water, soil types, and sunlight. These are the basic guidelines to follow:
- Choose native plant material. Native plants know how to thrive naturally in their local conditions. It is just ‘logical’. They have been growing there WAY before humans decided to give them an ornamental value for their man-manipulated, designed space. They are well adapted to the local soil conditions, water availability, light and weather patterns. You just need to know where to find them. I’m glad to see great nurseries popping up in the country with the mission and passion to promote the ‘Natives’. If you want to locate these specialized nurseries in your area, go to your state nursery and landscape association website.
- Incorporate local hardscape materials. If you are in wooded area incorporate mulches, if you are in dry, desert area incorporate gravels or incorporate both anywhere you are. The practice of xeriscaping will vary from region to region. Mulches and gravels are generally used to conserve the water and suppress labor.
- Install an efficient irrigation system suitable to the local conditions.
- Our conventional approach to garden design needs to adapt to these concepts. We need to study the essence of our local environment before we start designing.
- By designing a landscape in an appropriate manner, a balance among beauty, water conservation, sustainability and low maintenance can be achieved that fits both, the aesthetic needs of my clients, and sustainability of the new garden.
- Bring not just joy to your garden but a sense of ‘I Do Care’ for our environment as well. I’m always here to help you with your project… Javier Bohorquez – Casa Outdoor