Santa Barbara Coastal News


Drought-tolerant landscaping is gaining in popularity

5 Aug 2014 3:28 PM
Drought-tolerant landscaping is gaining in popularity

One of the new innovations taking the landscaping scene by storm - particularly on the west coast - is the implementation of drought-tolerant gardens. With water crisis occurring in California and no end to the shortage in sight, it's becoming more apparent than ever why developing gardens that can withstand the problems brought on by a drought is such a necessity. Luckily for those who love taking care of their plants, many industry experts are currently working to create and cultivate garden designs that can withstand a lack of water for a significant period of time.

For one example, recently reported that "a drought-tolerant garden is always good insurance" in Santa Barbara, and that many of the individuals living in that area's luxury real estate are currently working to put such a garden on their property. The news outlet also spoke to renown gardener and landscape designer Pat Brodie about his current drive to use more "unthirsty plants" in his work. He explained to the news outlet that he's looking to choose "plants with fine, downy-textured leaves and airy, cool-colored flower clusters" - he's not looking to put too many cactuses on anyone's property, so don't get the wrong idea. 

"Except for the red flax, which lends contrast, everything has a soft and delicate appearance," he explained to Sunset. "But they're actually all very tough."

The news outlet goes on to note that Fall is the perfect time to plant a drought-tolerant border to your garden, as a number of plants conducive to such a task - such as Mexican bush sage, or catmint - are still in bloom during that point in time. 

Sotheby's International Realty is already leading the charge in developing these gardens
Sotheby's International Realty is also working to provide Santa Barbarians and other west coast residents with obtainable luxury real estate with conveniently implemented drought-tolerant gardens. We recently listed a house designed by the renowned architect Frederick Fisher, in the heart of Santa Barbara Wine Country, that also features a "drought tolerant paradise" of oaks, olives and grasses designed by equally-renowned architect George Girvin. It sends a message that many are clearly learning: if you're going to live in this area of the country, you're going to have to make concessions and changes to your style of living to accommodate the ongoing shortage of H20. 

Others are also advocating on behalf of this style of garden. The San Jose Mercury News, for example, recently published an article entitled "replace lawn with drought-tolerant options" that recommended readers conserve water by replacing their lawn with drought-tolerant alternatives, for instance. The article even managed to quote Contra Costa Master Gardener Patril Southworth, who went on record noting that this is a great - and still aesthetically pleasing - way to replace water usage in the face of the California drought. The news source also offers five tips for staying drought-tolerant, so any homeowner interested in the practice should be sure to check out what they have to say on the topic. 

It's important for home designs to keep up with the environments that they occupy. On the west coast, water usage is being limited and many plants are having to go without their normal supply. That calls for a change in behaviors - and the institution of drought-tolerant plants is exactly the change that's needed. For the progressively minded - and for all those who want to be able to maintain their garden even in the face of water shortages - this new form of gardening is a golden solution.