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Summer Water Conservation Tip #7, Use Smart Landscaping

Consider using xeriscape landscaping.Prepare the soil. Have the soil analyzed to find out what supplements should be added. Shrubs and flower beds should have 4 to 6 inches of organic matter, such as peat moss or shredded tree bark, added to the soil. Once plants are established add more mulch to conserve soil moisture.  

Selecting native plants that are naturally adapted to local conditions and use less water is best. Also use nonnative plants that have been adapted to local conditions.  Grass lawns are the thirstiest part of your landscape, so grassy areas should be kept small and planted with grass types that need the least water. 

Xericaping may reduce water needs but may still need more water than natural rainfall can supply. You can use sprinklers that spray water over plants or a drip system to slowly feed the plants. Water infrequently but thoroughly.  

Maintenance on a xeriscaped area is cut in half through reduced mowing, more efficient watering and annual mulching. Weeding and fertilizing is usually not required more than twice a year. 

Each week during the summer, the City of Shreveport Department of Water & Sewerage will be issuing another water conservation tip. For more information on this and other water conservation tips, log onto http://www.shreveportla.gov.   

Xeriscape icon, wikimedia

This is landscaping that conserves the maximum possible amount of water through planning and design, soil preparation, appropriate plant and turf selection, mulching, efficient irrigation, and appropriate maintenance. Start with a plan. Consider the lay of the land, the eye appeal, slopes and valleys, placement of walkways, irrigation methods, ease of maintenance and water requirements. 

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