Water Conservation - Backyard Conservation and BayScapes
One way to conserve water while adding beauty and interest to your landscape is to create a wildlife habitat in your yard. Backyard conservation incorporates bird and wildlife habitats and food sources, erosion control, and water conservation.
The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Department website has all the details you need to create your own backyard habitat. http://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/detail/national/newsroom/features/?&cid=nrcs143_023553
BayScapes are environmentally sound landscapes benefiting people, wildlife, and the Chesapeake Bay. Developed by the Alliance for the Chesapeake Bay and the York Watershed Council, BayScapes are low-input landscapes, requiring less mowing, less fertilizing, and less pesticide use while providing diverse habitats for songbirds, small mammals, butterflies, and other creatures.
We live in a temperate region, with hundreds of native, hardy and drought tolerant trees, flowers, annuals, perennials, shrubs, and vines that will look great in your landscape. Local nurseries carry many of these plants, and can help you select the right ones for your landscape.
BayScaping Fundamentals include:
- Planning and design for water conservation and beauty from the start.
- Creating practical turf areas of manageable sizes, shapes, and appropriate grasses.
- Selecting low-water requirement plants... and grouping plants of similar water needs together.
- Using appropriate soil amendments like compost or manure as needed by the site and the type of plants used.
- Using mulches to reduce evaporation and to keep the soil cool.
- Irrigating efficiently with properly designed systems and by applying the right amount of water at the right time.
- Maintaining the landscape by mowing, weeding, pruning and fertilizing properly.
For more information on BayScaping, click here: https://allianceforthebay.org/library/publications/bayscapes/