Low Water Landscaping Ideas
The New California Landscape promotes a balance between urban landscapes and
the environment, includes diverse and beautiful aesthetic qualities, and facil-
itates the efficient use and management of resources, especially water.
These landscapes are suited to the Sacramento Region’s Mediterranean-
typeclimate and support a rich diversity of plants and wildlife. The carefully
selected plants in these designs make caring for the landscape easier, even for the
beginning gardener. These plants also provide food and shelter for many types of
birds, butterflies, and beneficial insects.
Because these plants are climate appropriate, and many are California native and drought tolerant, they will thrive and more
easily resist pest infestations and plant diseases, minimizing the need to use pesticides and reducing pollution, while saving
time and money. Additionally, the use of organic gardening practices and Integrated Pest Management (IPM) help to create and
sustain healthy soils. Healthy soils support healthy plants.
The design of these landscapes uses water-efficient, low-volume drip irrigation systems that provide each plant with just the
right amount of water, when and where it is needed. Functional-sized lawns are effectively irrigated by sprinklers fitted with
high-efficiency nozzles that apply water at a slower rate so the water can soak into the soil, reducing runoff.
Keeping water from irrigation and storm events on site prevents it from flowing into gutters, storm drain inlets, creeks, and
rivers. Some design elements that help facilitate on-site water management include rain gardens, dry creek beds, and
permeable materials. These elements help to slow the flow of water, enabling the soil to “filter” it, which reduces toxicants such
as oil from driveways and other waterborne pollutants from contaminating our waterways.
These landscapes use less water, require fewer hours of labor, and produce less green waste. Reducing landscape
maintenance means fewer mowers, fewer blowers, less noise, cleaner air.
Whether utilized by homeowners or landscape professionals, these landscape design plans, information, and resources are
provided to help us enhance our lives in terms of increased beauty, cost-effectiveness, value of property, and the health of our