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Drought-tolerant Grasses & Plants
Why Drought Tolerant Plants?
As California’s climate is consistently becoming warmer and drier, it is important to consider switching to more drought tolerant, less water dependent, plants. Choosing California native plants, which are already acclimated to California’s dry climate, provides multiple benefits for homeowners. From rebates to assist with the transition, to the money saved on watering, switching to a drought tolerant landscape is a growing trend for Californians. A great resource is the website, Water-Wise Gardening in Ventura County, which is co-sponsored by many cities and water agencies including Thousand Oaks.
Native plants and some street trees flourish with one day per week irrigation or less, but some of them require additional irrigation when planted. If you are planting now, please ensure that you choose species that need minimal irrigation when newly planted
If you want to keep the look of a real grass lawn, and would like some alternatives that use much less water than traditional grass, check out the following two articles that feature varieties of low-water grasses that stay green.
- 5 Low-Water Lawns That Stay Green Under Pressure
- Hey, California! You Can Still Have a Lawn! Here are 5 Water-wise Alternatives
Benefits of Native, Drought Tolerant Landscaping
- Save water. Drought tolerant plants require significantly less water than other plant types.
- Save money. Besides the water bill being smaller, you can also save on the costs of gardeners and replacing any non-drought tolerant landscaping that can’t survive under drought conditions.
- Low Maintenance. These plants save you time by requiring little to no maintenance throughout the year.
- Rebates may be available for converting yards to drought tolerant landscaping.
- Ecological benefits. Native, drought tolerant plant species helps local species and ecosystems to thrive by providing habitat.
- Use less pesticides. Native plants usually have natural defenses against many pests and diseases. Using less pesticide saves beneficial insects that are also killed by the pesticide and keeps toxins out of the soil and water.
- Be prepared for the next drought and the rest of this one.
Click here to watch a video about choosing drought tolerant plants.
- Master Gardeners of Ventura County: A comprehensive resource for free classes and gardening questions
- Ventura County Gardening: A comprehensive resource for California native drought tolerant plants.
- Las Pilitas Nursery: Lists native drought tolerant plants specifically for a Thousand Oaks garden.
- Calflora: Provides a thorough database on California native plants
- Calscape: A searchable database of California native plants by region.
- Be Waterwise: List of 50 favorite California native drought tolerant plants
- Kids Gardening: Interactive children’s activity on California’s native plants.
- L.A. Times article: Drought expert explains how to best water trees.
- UC Master Gardener Program Article: Tips on keeping trees alive during a drought