Water Conservation Facts

The Truth about Wise Water Use

Here are some little known water conservation facts:

If the lower mainland near Vancouver and many other municipalities don’t stop wasting water, by the year 2016 there will have to be a halt to any more residential building in certain areas.

Even new mega projects to link up more reservoirs won’t be enough for the demand.

Pacific Tree Frogs need water to breed in, but spend much of their adult lives in trees...

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Sadly, in a condominium project in Penticton recently, the developer had been proactive and installed some lovely xeriscaping around the buildings, only to have city council very shortsightedly reject it and demand that they install some grass areas, with in ground sprinklers.

The new owners of the apartments, the developer and xeriscapers alike were all disappointed by this complete lack of concern for the future.

Most of the houses in North America built since the early 1980’s have a wasted area in the front of the house, consisting of a driveway (of some type of impermeable material like tarmac or concrete) flanked by a useless patch of lawn.

For the easiest fix, get rid of the driveway and use some type of fitted blocks like earthquake bricks, and use xeriscaping instead of water guzzling lawn. A thyme lawn, made of closely spaced varieties of thyme like Thymus ‘Elfin’ will need some water while it gets established, but after that, it’s happy with the odd rainfall event for its irrigation.

Water Conservation Fact:

The usual types of grass used for ornamental lawns in residential areas wastes the most water of any landscaping feature.

Run off carries with it the noxious chemicals that most people rely on for a ‘beautiful’ lawn.

There are several seed mixes that contain grasses specifically chosen for their slow rate of growth, meaning less mowing, and their ability to withstand drought.

If you absolutely must have a lawn, look for these when re-seeding your old lawn, or planting a new one.

A ‘green sward’ with low growing clover and other plants previously considered weeds can be just as beautiful if kept mown, and these deep rooted plants stay green under considerable stress, and recover when conditions improve.

Water Conservation Fact:

Dry Gardens can save up to 75% of residential water use.

Hard to believe, isn’t it?

Dry gardens are planned and designed to be low maintenance, but dry gardens can also be beautiful. Dry doesn’t mean dead.

Simply choosing the right xeric plants and hardy succulents like Sedum and Sempervivum will give a lush and full look, even with little to no water.

Mulching with pebbles or lava rock can keep soil erosion to a minimum, while retaining a small amount of moisture in the soil below for the plants to survive on.

Water Conservation Fact:

Water Wise Landscaping in public spaces such as schools, public buildings and parks can save a significant amount of wasted irrigation water.

A timer will take advantage of lower demand times of day such as at night or a rainfall sensing device can eliminate watering at times when nature is taking care of it.

Water conservation facts are not just a fairy tale; they are the facts, the actual truth, and if we choose to ignore them, it won’t make the facts go away.

Be proactive, and be more responsible in planning our environs and gardens.

Xeriscape Gardening

Xeric Garden Styles

Xeriscape Design

UnH2O Garden

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