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Water-Efficient Landscaping in the Intermountain West

A Step by Step Guide for Professionals and Do it Yourselfers

Heidi Kratsch

Publication Year: 2011

This working manual provides complete information on the technical aspects of designing, building, and maintaining waterwise landscapes in the Mountain West. Written particularly for professionals, including landscape designers, architects, contractors, and maintenance and irrigation specialists, it has an attractive, well-illustrated, user-friendly format that will make it useful as well to DIY homeowners and to educators, plant retailers, extension agents, and many others.

The manual is organized according to landscape principles that are adapted to the climate of the intermountain region. Beginning with planning and design, the topical principles proceed through soil preparation, appropriate plant selection, practicalities of turfgrass, use of mulch, and irrigation planning, winding up with landscape maintenance. Designed for onsite, handy use, the book is illustrated with color images of landscapes, plants, and materials. Tables, charts, diagrams, landscape plans, plant lists, checklists, and other graphic resources are scattered throughout the manual, which is written in an accessible but information-rich style. Water-Efficient Landscaping in the Intermountain West answers, more comprehensively than any other single book, the need for professional information that addresses both growing awareness of the necessity for water conservation and the desire for beautiful, healthy yards and properties.

Published by: Utah State University Press

Table of Contents

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pp. vii-viii

Utah is one of the five fastest growing states in the nation, and it shares a border with the four other fastest growing states. From 1990 to 2000, Utah’s population increased...

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pp. ix-x

This manual provides information on the technical aspects of designing, building, and maintaining water-efficient landscapes in the intermountain region of the western United States. It was written specifically for professionals: landscape designers...

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Principle 1: Planning and Design

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pp. 2-29

The design of a landscape is critical to achieving water sustainability. Landscapes must be designed to match the regional climate and soil conditions. These factors determine the amount of supplemental water that will be needed at a site. Ideally, the...

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Principle 2: Soil Preparation

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pp. 30-38

Fundamental to water-efficient management in landscapes and gardens is an understanding of how soils interact with water and how various soil properties affect the infiltration, movement, and retention of water. In this section, we briefly...

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Principle 3: Appropriate Plant Selection

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pp. 39-57

It is a misconception that water-efficient landscapes must be designed using only plants native to the region. Some plants native to the Intermountain West are particularly adapted to the higher-elevation, dry, and often harsh conditions of the region. But many plants native to other parts of the country and the world with...

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Principle 4: Practical Turfgrass Areas

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pp. 58-70

Of the guiding principles of water-efficient landscaping, the most controversial involves the use of turfgrass in the landscape. At times it seems as though water-efficient landscaping may not allow the use of turfgrasses at all. In fact, water-...

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Principle 5: Use of Mulch

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pp. 71-76

Mulching around plants in a water-efficient landscape helps keep valuable water in the soil around plant roots and discourages the germination and growth of weed seeds. This not only minimizes irrigation requirements but results in a landscape...

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Principle 6: Irrigation Planning

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pp. 77-98

Irrigation of a water-efficient landscape starts with designing a system that will most effectively deliver water to plants with the least amount of waste. The following are some key concepts to keep in mind during the design process:...

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Principle 7: Landscape Maintenance

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pp. 99-108

Maintenance techniques for a water-efficient landscape are not different from those for a conventional landscape. But differences do exist regarding the types and frequencies of some tasks. Due to the predominance...

References and Additional Resources

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pp. 109-110


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pp. 111-116

E-ISBN-13: 9780874217902
Print-ISBN-13: 9780874217896

Publication Year: 2011