2016 Drought Spotlight - A Year in Review

MARCH - Diane in Southport

While running through the neighborhoods of West Sacramento, Diane loved how much color and variety she saw in other people’s front yards. On a winter day in the second year of the drought, she and her spouse decided to replace their grass and dead tree with a real sitting area, full of colorful plants that would provide variety all year round. Not only is their new front yard beautiful, it requires very little water. In fact, their water usage has been cut by more than half.

APRIL - Lynn and Steve in Bridgeway Islands

In 2012, Lynn and Steve removed part of their backyard. By 2015, they had enough and decided to remove all of their lawn from the front and backyard. With a brand new waterwise landscape, they have found that a variety of beautiful plants throughout the year (and extra room for growing vegetables) is so much better than a traditional lawn.

MAY - Karen in Arlington Oaks

As a professional for a local water agency, Karen is passionate about water conservation. After years of teaching others how to convert their thirsty lawns to a River Friendly Landscape, she decided it was time to take her own advice and remove her lawn too. With help from EcoLandscape California, she ripped out her front lawn and replaced it with low water use plants using River Friendly practices. Karen's water consumption dropped from 1,000 gallons to 40 gallons a week.

JUNE - Erin on Poplar Street

When Erin moved into her house, landscaping was nonexistent. There was nothing but Bermuda grass and a nearly dead tree. Having dreamed of a turf-less, low-water and low-maintenance front yard for years, Erin used her knowledge as a Master Gardener to make the change. She planted several lavender creeping lantanas, a crape myrtle tree, English lavender plants and more.

JULY - Louis in Bridgeway Islands

When Louis moved into his home in 2001, the backyard was just a fenced-in stretch of dirt. He knew right away that he didn’t want grass in the backyard, but he wanted something easy to maintain that could be used year-round. The result was an easy-to-maintain space with a great inside-outside feel and low water use.

AUGUST - Linda in the State Streets

Over the course of several years, Linda made incremental progress in reducing her water use. But in 2014 she decided to finally remove her lawn and replace it with a little world of succulents: prickly pear, barrel cactus, aloe vera and red hat cactus. She has a split rail fence along the driveway, sidewalk and down the property line. To frame the yard, lantana flowers in yellow and purple were planted along the sidewalk. It is filled in with rock and has a drip-system, which runs once or twice a month for 20 minutes.

SEPTEMBER - Steven in Southport

When Steven moved into his home in 2011, he knew he wanted a waterwise landscape. However, like many plans in life, it had to be postponed. By 2015, he had enough. Steven let his grass die and went to the UC Davis Arboretum to gather inspiration on his project. The end result is a beautiful landscape with year-round color and lots of plants, birds, bees, lizards and butterflies.