Quick Tips for a California-Friendly Garden


Landscape water use accounts for as much as 70 percent of total residential water use. Close to half of the water used outdoors is wasted through overwatering, runoff, and evaporation. With smart choices about sprinklers, plants, and maintenance, water bills can drop and landscape health increase.

Choose plants that naturally thrive in Southern California’s climate
• Select plants with moderate to low water needs
• Match your plants’ sun and water needs within shrub and flower beds to avoid overwatering plants with low water needs
• Use your favorite high water need plants as accents in areas that are protected from heat and wind
• Encourage healthy roots with soil preparation and deep, less frequent watering

Mow high and mulch deep
• Raise the lawnmower blade to mow higher and help the lawn grow deeper roots
• Keep a 2 to 3 inch layer of mulch in planting beds to limit evaporation and help control weeds
• Direct rainwater from the roof into a rain barrel or shrub bed and away from the home’s foundation

Keep your sprinkler system up to date
• Create a custom watering schedule and regularly adjust your sprinkler timer
• Install a smart sprinkler controller that will automatically adjust to changing conditions
• Use rotating sprinkler nozzles for lawn and groundcovers
• Convert from spray watering to drip, bubblers, and microsprays for shrubs and flower beds
• Install a rain sensor to automatically shut off sprinklers
• Change or cap sprinkler heads in areas converted from lawn to shrub and flower beds
• Repair sprinkler leaks and adjust for blocked spay and runoff to avoid water use