GreenSource™ Landscape & Sports Turf Proudly Serving Broward, Miami Dade & Palm Beach Counties in FL
When you think about drought-tolerant landscaping, do you think that it’s only for folks living in Arizona or California? And do you think it means lots of brown space with cacti and bromeliads?
Well, if that’s what you think, you’ll be pleased to know that this isn’t the case. When it comes to drought-tolerant landscaping, also known as xeriscaping, there are plenty of plant combinations and other drought-tolerant landscape practices to ensure a green, gorgeous commercial property.
Why Your Property Isn’t Water Smart
It’s not an option to conserve water. Broward, Miami Dade and Palm Beach Counties all mandate that you irrigate on certain days between certain hours. And to avoid water usage fines, you respect that schedule. Yet, your landscape looks either bone dry and brittle, or your plants and palms are soggy from too much water.
- Turf maintenance: Your lawn has brown patches in it. The soil is compacted and there are more weeds than healthy grass growing in your park or school.
- Water-sucking plants: Let’s face it—there are some plants that need more water than others. Plus, invasive species will suck up more water and room—thus, choking out other plants from getting established and surviving.
- Poor drainage: If areas of your property are not draining well after a heavy rainstorm, your soil may be compacted and need to be aerated to allow water to percolate down deep into the soil. Conversely, your plants may be drying out if your sandy soil can’t retain any water.
Smart Landscape Design
Indeed, you can have a vibrant, gorgeous landscape with deep, green grass and still save on water.
You can incorporate xeriscaping into your commercial property, HOA, apartment complex, or school by first evaluating your landscaping. Drought-tolerant landscaping not only includes plants that can handle dry conditions, but it also means that your landscape design is set up to group plants together into hydrozones. Here’s what you need to know about smart landscape design:
- Know your micro-climates: Realize that your property’s soil moisture is going to vary throughout your property. One area may be drier—especially if it’s in full sun or is if it gets a lot of wind. Another area, such as a shaded bio swale, may be wet most of the time. Additionally, these micro-climates are also affected by soil type and condition.
- Take care of your soil for your lawn’s sake: Your campus’s lawn will have bare patches, too many weeds and will looked run down if your soil isn’t healthy. Consider having a soil test done and a lawn maintenance schedule set up to rehabilitate your lawn so it will be green and weed-free.
- Install your landscape plants, trees, turf and shrubs in the right hydrozone: Consider re-landscaping your property so thirsty plants are in one area, drought-tolerant plants are in another area. Also hire a qualified landscape contractor who’s an expert in microclimates and hydrozone planting.
- Pull out all invasive plants and install natives instead: If there is a plant in your company’s landscape that is taking over your beds and borders, consider having it removed. Air potato, Australian pine, Brazilian pepper, melaleuca and the water hyacinth are five examples of invasive plants in South Florida. Instead, plant drought-tolerant natives, such as American wisteria, beautyberry, black mangrove, brittle thatch palm, buccaneer palm, buttonbush and Florida flame azalea, to name a few.
- Add bio-swales and rain gardens: If there is a spot on your campus’s property where water doesn’t drain well, consider adding a bio swale or a rain garden. For a rain garden, your landscape professional would install water-loving grasses and other wetland plants that will filter out pollutants from stormwater before it absorbs into the ground.
- Have your irrigation system mapped out: If you haven’t had a recent water audit on your irrigation system, now’s the time to complete it. You need to know what zones are covered as well as readjust irrigation heads so each zone gets the right amount of water for each micro-climate. Remember, your irrigation system is supposed to only supplement your property when there hasn’t been sufficient rainfall.
- Keep your irrigation system on a monthly maintenance schedule: Your irrigation system also needs monthly maintenance to make sure everything is working property and to repair any broken heads and nozzles.
- Add mulch: A thick layer of mulch—2”–4” maximum—will help your soil retain moisture. Plus, it’ll keep out weeds that would take moisture away from your landscape plants. Mulch also protects plants from extreme heat and cold temperatures.
- Install driplines: If possible, consider retrofitting your irrigation system to include driplines to your landscape beds, trees, shrubs and containers. Driplines will help you save water by delivering it right to the roots at the amount that your plants need.
- Add permeable hardscapes: If you can, consider renovating your parking areas, walking paths and entryways to permeable pavers. While this is an effective solution for managing stormwater runoff, it’s also expensive and time-consuming—especially if you’re a busy retail space or corporate center.
How GreenSource™ Can Help You
Since we partner with Florida-Friendly Landscaping™, we’re trained in drought-tolerant landscaping. Here’s how we can help you incorporate xeriscaping into your HOA, apartment complex, office campus or school:
- Perform water audits on your irrigation system
- Maintain your irrigation system on a monthly basis called wet checks
- Install driplines in your containers, landscaped beds, under shrubs and trees
- Evaluate your landscape for micro-climates
- Remove all invasive plants
- Renovate your landscape to include bio swales, berms, rain gardens, and permeable pavers
- Install mulch in your landscape beds, trees and shrubs
- Install native plants including flowers, shrubs, and trees
- Test your soil
- Renovate your lawn by aerating, overseeding and other soil improvement practices
- Make sure all of your plants are in their right hydrozones
- And many more lawn and landscape services.
If you’re a commercial property in South Florida and you need a one-stop shop for all of your lawn and landscape needs, call us at 954-385-0040 or fill out our request a quote form.