|Native Gaillardia and Rosemary -|
Two extremely drought tolerant plants
Even though our sub-tropical climate receives more rainfall than California, there most likely will come a day when we are no longer able to water our yards either. With continuing population growth, poor water management by authorities and less rainfall than in the past, we are already restricted to a maximum of 2 days a week or less in most parts of Florida. Many counties also have restrictions against fertilizing turf grass in the summer months.
When that day comes will your yard be self-sustaining? Or will we, like Californians today, be tearing out our lawns and replacing it with drought resistant plants and groundcover? That's a good question and one that we all should start to ponder. Even if that day never comes - - who wants to spend their hard -earned money on a large water bill every month?
Instead of having to make a big conversion someday, we can begin to make small changes today by enlarging flower beds to reduce turf area and replacing plants that die with native or drought tolerant plants. Another, easy move to make now is to plant a tree or two to provide a bit more shade. A partly shaded garden or lawn will require less water than one in full sunlight all day, especially in summer,
Don't know where to start? Check out the following resources by the University of Florida extension and others for plenty of ideas for drought tolerant plants best suited for our central Florida area:
Ten Plants that Beat the Heat
Top 5 Drought Resistant Trees
Top 5 Drought Resistant Perennials
Native Plants for your Area
10 Drought Tolerant Native Plants for the South
Plant Real Florida
So, next time you go to the nursery - think ahead - and begin the transition of your yard to one that can sustain itself on the normal rainfall we receive. Your wallet will thank you, and you'll be amazed at how easy your garden will be to take care of.
Leave a comment and share the solutions you have incorporated into your yard to reduce water usage.