Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Xeriscaping, the way to go in New Mexico
When we began to plan our move to New Mexico, a new word entered my vocabulary: Xeriscaping.
Xeriscaping is gardening and landscaping in ways that do not require supplemental irrigation. The word is a combination of the Greek “xeros” (for dry) and landscaping. It is the most ecologically sensible way to garden in a desert climate such as New Mexico has.
Xeriscaping is a way to garden naturally, with emphasis on desert plants that do not require a lot of water. Evaporation and runoff are avoided in providing as little water as possible to plants. In using local native plants, such as cactus, lavendar, chamisa, and sedum, etc. and other drought-tolerant plants, precious water is conserved.
I have much to learn. A couple of years ago my husband gave me two wonderful books written by Judith Phillips: Natural by Design, and New Mexico Gardener’s Guide. (Judith Phillips is a leading New Mexico landscaper; her wisdom is greatly respected in NM.) While I am still here in the Midwest, and months away from our move, I am taking the opportunity to study these books and learn all I can about xeriscaping and New Mexico gardening.
The great day will come when I can apply what I have learned and try my hand at xeriscape gardening in my own home in New Mexico.